Monday, July 14, 2008

Roderick Hudson. Henry James (3)

New York: The Library of America
1876 (1983)

Note: I could choose many more quotes from the pages of Roderick Hudson, but today's and the preceding day's quotes should give you a flavor of the one-sentence quips and ideas that James makes use of in the pages of his novels.

205 Mr. Striker: “After he has been looking three or four years [at antiques]….” Rowland: “He studies the living model.”

207 “…a lawyer whose conversational tone betrayed the habit of cross-questioning.”

215 “But I have the misfortune to be a rather idle man, and in Europe the burden of idleness is less heavy than here [in America].”

216 “Don’t you know how to do anything? Have you no profession?...What do you do all day?” Rowland: “Nothing worth relating. That’s why I am going to Europe. There, at least if I do nothing, I shall see a great deal; and if I’m not a producer, I shall at any rate be an observer.”

216 Miss Garland: “Do you mean to do a great deal for him?” Rowland: “What I can. But my power of helping him is very small beside his power of helping himself.”

220 Roderick on leaving Miss Garland at home in Northampton to go to Europe: “We shall be condemned for some time to come, to do a terrible deal of abstract thinking about each other.”

222 “Rowland went off envying the intellectual comfort of genius, which can arrive at serene conclusions without disagreeable processes.”

223 “Success is only passionate effort.”

224 “You’re a better Catholic than the Pope.”

224 “The curious thing is that the more the mind takes in, the more it has space for.”

225 “…there was an indefinable expression of experience rapidly and easily assimilated.”

226 “Rowland told him that when he turned sculptor a capital novelist was spoiled.”

226 “And surely youth and genius, hand in hand, were the most beautiful sight in the world.”

227 “He declared that Rome made him feel and understand more things than he could express….”

234 “…one more example of Yankee crudity, a capital recruit to the great army of those who wish to dance before they can walk.”

238 “…and looking up at him as if Roderick were himself a statue on a pedestal.”

239 “She talked in a sweet, soft voice…and made literary allusions.”

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