109. “I am writing a treatise just now” said the badger, coughing diffidently to show that he was absolutely set on explaining it, “which is to point out why Man has become the master of the animals. Perhaps you would like to hear it? It’s for my doctor’s degree you know,” he added hastily, before Wart could protest. He got few chances of reading his treatise to anybody, so he could not bear to let the opportunity slip by.”
112. “Perhaps war was due to fear: to fear of reliability. Unless there was truth, and unless people told the truth, there was always danger in everything outside the individual. You told the truth to yourself, but you had no surety for your neighbour. This uncertainty must end by making the neighbour a menace.”
116. “Neither force, nor argument, nor opinion,” said Merlyn with the deepest sincerity, “are thinking. Argument is only a display of mental force, a sort of fencing with points in order to gain a victory, not for truth. Opinions are the blind alleys of lazy or of stupid men, who are unable to think.”
117. “Grey damp would be around them, and the sun, a copper penny, would fade away. The wings next to their own wings would shade into vacancy, until each bird was a lonely sound in cold annihilation, a presence after uncreation. And there they would hang in chartless nothing, seemingly without speed or left or right or top or bottom, until as suddenly as ever the copper penny glowed and the serpents writhed.”
119. “He was feeling a new heresy coming over him, possibly as a result of the spirits, and it had something to do about the celibacy of the clergy. He had one already about the shape of his tonsure and the usual one about the date of Easter, as well as his of Pelagian business-but the latest was beginning to make him feel as if the presence of children was unnecessary.”
128. “I am a failure in the world. I do not rule people, nor deceive them for the sake of power, nor try to swindle their livelihood into my own possession. I say to them: Please go freely on your way, and I will do my best to follow mine. Well then, Maria, although this is not a fashionable way of going on, nor even a successful one, it is a thing which I believe in – that people must not tyrannize, nor try to be great because they are little.”
129. “They believed that the most important thing in the world was to find out what one liked doing, and then to do it. Thus the people who liked being hunters, were hunters; those who liked fishing, fished; and anybody who did not like doing anything at all was supported by the others with the greatest care and commiseration, for they considered him to be the most unfortunate of mortals.”
133. “We are so numerous that we are starving. Therefore we must encourage still larger families so as to become yet more numerous and starving. When we are so numerous and starving as all that, obviously we shall have a right to take other people’s stores of seed. Besides, we shall by then have a numerous and starving army.”
136. “A fortnight after the Winchester tournament, while Elaine nursed her hero back to life, Guenever was having a scene with Sir Bors at court. Being a woman-hater, Bors always had instructive scenes with women. He said what he thought, and they said what they thought, and neither of them understood the other a bit.”
137. “What a bursting heart of gratitude and triumph as the ravening monster slowly paced down the arm with gripping steps and pounced upon his breakfast! The rest of the day was a glow of pleasure, a kind of still life in which the sun shone on the flowers with more than natural brilliance, giving them the high lights of porcelain.”
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