Literary Quotations
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D.H. LAWRENCE QUOTES


Lady Chatterley's Lover (1928)

There is no smooth road into the future: but we go round, or scramble over the obstacles.

--Chapter One

We've got to live, no matter how many skies have fallen.

--Chapter One

A man was like a child with his appetites. A woman had to yield him what he wanted, or like a child he would probably turn nasty and flounce away and spoil what was a very pleasant connection.

--Chapter One

The bitch-goddess, as she is called, of Success, roamed, snarling and protective, round the half-humble, half-defiant Michaelis' heels, and intimidated Clifford completely: for he wanted to prostitute himself to the bitch-goddess Success also, if only she would have him.

--Chapter Three

Money is a sort of instinct. It's a sort of property of nature in a man to make money. It's nothing you do. It's no trick you play. It's a sort of permanent accident of your own nature; once you start, you make money, and you go on ... But you've got to begin ... You've got to get in. You can do nothing if you are kept outside. You've got to beat your way in. Once you've done that, you can't help it!

--Chapter Three

The bitch-goddess, Success, was trailed by thousands of gasping dogs with lolling tongues.

--Chapter Three

The world is supposed to be full of possibilities, but they narrow down to pretty few in most personal experience. There's lots of good fish in the sea ... maybe ... but the vast masses seem to be mackerel or herring, and if you're not mackerel or herring yourself, you are likely to find very few good fish in the sea.

--Chapter Four

Sex is just another form of talk, where you act the words instead of saying them.

--Chapter Four

When the emotional soul receives a wounding shock, which does not kill the body, the soul seems to recover as the body recovers. But this is only appearance. It is really only the mechanism of the reassumed habit. Slowly, slowly the wound to the soul begins to make itself felt, like a bruise, which only slowly deepens its terrible ache, till it fills all the psyche.

--Chapter Five

The only reality was nothingness, and over it a hypocrisy of words.

--Chapter Five

Money is the seal and stamp of success.

--Chapter Five

Nothingness! To accept the great nothingness of life seemed to be the one end of living. All the many busy and important little things that make up the grand sum-total of nothingness!

--Chapter Five

Happiness was a term of hypocrisy used to bluff other people.

--Chapter Six

Sex and a cocktail: they both lasted about as long, had the same effect, and amounted to about the same thing.

--Chapter Six

What a frail, easily hurt, rather pathetic thing a human body is, naked; somehow a little unfinished, incomplete!

--Chapter Seven

A woman needn't be dragged down by her functions.

--Chapter Seven

Conscience was chiefly fear of society, or fear of oneself.

--Chapter Ten

When passion is dead, or absent, then the magnificent throb of beauty is incomprehensible and even a little despicable.

--Chapter Ten

God alone knows where the future lies.

--Chapter Eleven

To my experience the mass of women are like this: most of them want a man, but don't want the sex, but they put up with it, as part of the bargain.

--Chapter Fourteen

What's that as flies without wings, your ladyship? Time! Time!

--Chapter Fifteen

Whatever God there is is slowly eliminating the guts and alimentary system from the human being, to evolve a higher, more spiritual being.

--Chapter Sixteen

Paris was sad. One of the saddest towns: weary of its now-mechanical sensuality, weary of the tension of money, money, money, weary even of resentment and conceit, just weary to death, and still not sufficiently Americanized or Londonized to hide the weariness under a mechanical jig-jig-jig!

--Chapter Seventeen

Only youth has a taste of immortality.

--Chapter Seventeen

It seems to me absolutely true, that our world, which appears to us the surface of all things, is really the bottom of a deep ocean: all our trees are submarine growths, and we are weird, scaly-clad submarine fauna, feeding ourselves on offal like shrimps. Only occasionally the soul rises gasping through the fathomless fathoms under which we live, far up to the surface of the ether, where there is true air.

--Chapter Seventeen

Sex is really only touch, the closest of all touch. And it's touch we're afraid of.

--Chapter Eighteen

Patience! Patience! The world is a vast and ghastly intricacy of mechanism, and one has to be very wary, not to get mangled by it.

--Chapter Eighteen

Money poisons you when you've got it, and starves you when you haven't.

--Chapter Nineteen

Sons and Lovers (1913)

When love enters, the whole spiritual constitution of a man changes, is filled with the Holy Ghost, and almost his form is altered.

--Part I, Chapter 2

There were many, many stages in the ebbing of her love for him, but it was always ebbing.

--Part I, Chapter 3

He was an outsider. He had denied the God in him.

--Part I, Chapter 4

But still, in her heart of hearts, where the love should have burned, there was a blank. Now, when all her woman's pity was roused to its full extent, when she would have slaved herself to death to nurse him and to save hum, when she would have taken the pain herself, if she could, somewhere far away inside her, she felt indifferent to him and to his suffering. It hurt her most of all, this failure to love him, even when he roused her strong emotions.

--Part I, Chapter 5

The man was the work and the work was the man, one thing, for the time being. It was different with the girls. The real woman never seemed to be there at the task, but as if left out, waiting.

--Part I, Chapter 5

The trains roared by like projectiles level on the darkness, fuming and burning, making the valley clang with their passage. They were gone, and the lights of the towns and villages glittered in silence.

--Part I, Chapter 5

There's a feel of men about trucks, because they've been handled with men's hands, all of them.

--Part I, Chapter 6

Her great companion was her mother. They were both brown-eyed, and inclined to be mystical, such women as treasure religion inside them, breathe it in their nostrils, and see the whole of life in a mist thereof.

--Part II, Chapter 7

All the life of Miriam's body was in her eyes, which were usually dark as a dark church, but could flame with light like a conflagration. Her face scarcely ever altered from its look of brooding. She might have been one of the women who went with Mary when Jesus was dead. Her body was not flexible and living.

--Part II, Chapter 7

She seemed to need things kindling in her imagination or in her soul before she felt she had them. And she was cut off from ordinary life by her religious intensity which made the world for her either a nunnery garden or a paradise, where sin and knowledge were not, or else an ugly, cruel thing.

--Part II, Chapter 7

On the whole, she scorned the male sex. But here was a new specimen, quick, light, graceful, who could be gentle and who could be sad, and who was clever, and who knew a lot, and who had a death in the family.

--Part II, Chapter 7

They were going to have a communion together - something that thrilled her, something holy.

--Part II, Chapter 7

One should be religious in everything, have God, whatever God might be, present in everything.

--Part II, Chapter 9

You're always begging things to love you as if you were a beggar for love. Even the flowers, you have to fawn on them -- You don't want to love -- your eternal and abnormal craving is to be loved. You aren't positive, you're negative. You absorb, absorb, as if you must fill yourself up with love, because you've got a shortage somewhere.

--Part II, Chapter 9

One should feel inside oneself for right and wrong, and should have the patience to gradually realise one's God.

--Part II, Chapter 10

A house o' women is as dead as a house wi' no fire, to my thinkin'. I'm not a spider as likes to corner myself. I like a man about, if he's only something to snap at.

--Part II, Chapter 10

He was like so many young men of his own age. Sex had become so complicated in him that he would have denied that he ever could want Clara or Miriam or any woman whom he _knew_. Sex desire was a sort of detached thing, that did not belong to a woman.

--Part II, Chapter 10

He grew warm at the thought of Clara, he battled with her, he knew the curves of her breast and shoulders as if they had been moulded inside him.

--Part II, Chapter 10

She would submit, religiously, to the sacrifice. He should have her. And at the thought her whole body clenched itself involuntarily, hard, as if against something; but Life forced her through this gate of suffering, too, and she would submit. At any rate, it would give him what he wanted, which was her deepest wish.

--Part II, Chapter 11

She turned to him with a splendid movement. Her mouth was offered him, and her throat; her eyes were half-shut; her breast was tilted as if it asked for him. He flashed with a small laugh, shut his eyes, and met her in a long, whole kiss. Her mouth fused with his; their bodies were sealed and annealed.

--Part II, Chapter 12

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