E.M. Forster’s A Room with a View

rvcoverThe book tells the story of how a young upper middle class English girl goes about realizing her first love & overcoming social/self deception; a delighful, short read with settings in Florence, Italy. I read a red hardcover copy from the Penn State University Library, probably the Abinger Edition re-printed in 1977. The following are some striking quotes from the book noticed in my first reading of this Victorian-era fiction (emphases are mine):

– pg.58: “It was Phaethon who drove them to Fiesole that memorable day, a youth all irresponsibility and fire…”

– pg.73: “The luxury of self-exposure kept her almost happy through the long evening.”

– p.75: “She could not modulate out of the key of self-abasement in which she had started.”

– p.87: “They wished that they also knew Italian, for our phrases of approval & of amazement are so connected with little occasions that we fear to use them on great ones.”

– p.94: “Youth seldom criticizes the accomplished fact.”

– p.94: “An engagement is so potent a thing that sooner or later it reduces all who speak of it to this state of cheerful awe… It has a strange power, for it compels not only the lips, but the very heart.”

– p.108: “Passion should believe itself irresistible. It should forget civility and consideration and all the other curses of refined nature.”

– p.120: “Secrecy has this disadvantage: we lose the sense of proportion; we cannot tell whether our secret is important or not.”

– p.126: “How d’ye do? Come and have a bathe.”

– p.143: “He will work off his crudities in time. I rather mistrust young men who slip into life gracefully.”

– p.158: “[My father]… says that there is only one perfect view – the view of the sky straight over our heads.”

– p.161: “The armour of falsehood is subtly wrought out of darkness & hides a man not only from others, but from his own soul.”

– p.171: “He looked at her, instead of through her, for the first time since they were engaged. From a Leonardo she had become a living woman, with mysteries and forces of her own, with qualities that even eluded art.”

– p.202: “It isn’t possible to love & to part.”


~ by filmic on January 21.

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