Things Wavian

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Waugh

Art is the symbol of the two noblest human efforts: to construct and to refrain from destruction.

Don’t hold your parents up to contempt. After all, you are their son, and it is just possible that you may take after them.

I put the words down and push them a bit.

I think to be oversensitive about cliches is like being oversensitive about table manners.

In the dying world I come from, quotation is a national vice.

It is a curious thing… that every creed promises a paradise which will be absolutely uninhabitable for anyone of civilized taste.

Money is only useful when you get rid of it. It is like the odd card in “Old Maid”; the player who is finally left with it has lost.

My unhealthy affection for my second daughter has waned. Now I despise all my seven children equally.

Not everyone grows to be old, but everyone has been younger than he is now.

Of children as of procreation – the pleasure momentary, the posture ridiculous, the expense damnable.

One forgets words as one forgets names. One’s vocabulary needs constant fertilizing or it will die.

Other nations use ‘force’; we Britons alone use ‘Might’.

Perhaps host and guest is really the happiest relation for father and son.

Pray always for all the learned, the oblique, the delicate. Let them not be quite forgotten at the throne of God when the simple come into their kingdom.

Professional reviewers read so many bad books in the course of duty that they get an unhealthy craving for arresting phrases.

Punctuality is the virtue of the bored.

The truth is that Oxford is simply a very beautiful city in which it is convenient to segregate a certain number of the young of the nation while they are growing up.

There is a species of person called a ‘Modern Churchman’ who draws the full salary of a beneficed clergyman and need not commit himself to any religious belief.

We cherish our friends not for their ability to amuse us, but for ours to amuse them.

We class schools into four grades: leading school, first-rate school, good school and school.

What is youth except a man or woman before it is ready or fit to be seen?

When we argue for our limitations, we get to keep them.

Your actions, and your action alone, determines your worth.

Basil Seal

“…Basil lay back on the divan and watched her with fascination. This was how
he liked to see women behave in moments of alarm. He rejoiced, always, in the
spectacle of women at a disadvantage: thus he would watch, in the asparagus
season, a dribble of melted butter on a woman’s chin, marring her beauty and
making her ridiculous, while she would talk and smile and turn her head, not
knowing how she appeared to him…”

Evelyn WaughPut Out More Flags (1942)