Search for books, people and lists
Read This Twice
HomePeopleBooksLibrariesSign In
Great Expectations book cover

Great Expectations Quotes

I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be.
Suffering has been stronger than all other teaching, and has taught me to understand what your heart used to be. I have been bent and broken, but - I hope - into a better shape.
We need never be ashamed of our tears.
In a word, I was too cowardly to do what I knew to be right, as I had been too cowardly to avoid doing what I knew to be wrong.
It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.
There was a long hard time when I kept far from me the remembrance of what I had thrown away when I was quite ignorant of its worth.
Ask no questions, and you'll be told no lies.
You are in every line I have ever read.
I have been bent and broken, but - I hope - into a better shape.
Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.
The unqualified truth is, that when I loved Estella with the love of a man, I loved her simply because I found her irresistible. Once for all; I knew to my sorrow, often and often, if not always, that I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be. Once for all; I love her none the less because I knew it, and it had no more influence in restraining me, than if I had devoutly believed her to be human perfection.
So, throughout life, our worst weaknesses and meannesses are usually committed for the sake of the people whom we most despise.
I must be taken as I have been made. The success is not mine, the failure is not mine, but the two together make me.
Take nothing on its looks; take everything on evidence. There's no better rule.
I am what you designed me to be.I am your blade. You cannot now complain if you also feel the hurt.
That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.
The unqualified truth is, that when I loved Estella with the love of a man, I loved her simply because I found her irresistible. Once for all; I knew to my sorrow, often and often, if not always, that I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be. Once for all; I love her none the less because I knew it, and it had no more influence in restraining me, than if I had devoutly believed her to be human perfection.
I'll tell you," said she, in the same hurried passionate whisper, "what real love it. It is blind devotion, unquestioning self-humiliation, utter submission, trust and belief against yourself and against the whole world, giving up your whole heart and soul to the smiter - as I did!.
Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts.
In the little world in which children have their existence, whosoever brings them up, there is nothing so finely perceived and so finely felt as injustice.
Moths, and all sorts of ugly creatures, hover about a lighted candle. Can the candle help it?.
We changed again, and yet again, and it was now too late and too far to go back, and I went on. And the mists had all solemnly risen now, and the world lay spread before me.
You are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read, since I first came here, the rough common boy whose poor heart you wounded even then. You have been in every prospect I have ever seen since-on the river, on the sails of the ships, on the marshes, in the clouds, in the light, in the darkness, in the wind, in the woods, in the sea, in the streets. You have been the embodiment of every graceful fancy that my mind has ever become acquainted with.
Life is made of so many partings welded together.
No varnish can hide the grain of the wood; and that the more varnish you put on, the more the grain will express itself.
I took her hand in mine, and we went out of the ruined place; and, as the morning mists had risen long ago when I first left the forge, so, the evening mists were rising now, and in all the broad expanse of tranquil light they showed to me, I saw no shadow of another parting from her.
So, I must be taken as I have been made. The success is not mine, the failure is not mine, but the two together make me.
Once for all; I knew to my sorrow, often and often, if not always, that I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be.
There was something very comfortable in having plenty of stationery.
It is not possible to know how far the influence of any amiable, honest-hearted duty-doing man flies out into the world, but it is very possible to know how it has touched one's self in going by.
One should never be ashamed to cry. Tears are rain on the dust of earth.
And still I stood looking at the house, thinking how happy I should be if I lived there with her, and knowing that I never was happy with her, but always miserable.
Suffering has been stronger than all other teaching, and has taught me to understand what your heart used to be.
She had curiously thoughtful and attentive eyes; eyes that were very pretty and very good.
So new to him," she muttered, "so old to me; so strange to him, so familiar to me; so melancholy to both of us!...
I never had one hour's happiness in her society, and yet my mind all round the four-and-twenty hours was harping on the happiness of having her with me unto death.
All other swindlers upon earth are nothing to the self-swindlers, and with such pretences did I cheat myself.
I had seen the damp lying on the outside of my little window, as if some goblin had been crying there all night, and using the window for a pocket-handkerchief.
. . . in seclusion, she had secluded herself from a thousand natural and healing influences; that, her mind, brooding solitary, had grown diseased, as all minds do and must and will that reverse the appointed order of their Maker . ..
Do you want to be a gentleman, to spite her or to gain her over? Because, if it is to spite her, I should think - but you know best - that might be better and more independently done by caring nothing for her words. And if it is to gain her over, I should think - but you know best - she was not worth gaining over.
We were equals afterwards, as we had been before; but, afterwards at quiet times when I sat looking at Joe and thinking about him, I had a new sensation of feeling conscious that I was looking up to Joe in my heart.
But, in this separation I associate you only with the good and I will faithfully hold you to that always, for you have done far more good than harm, let me feel now what sharp distress I may.
There have been occasions in my later life (I suppose as in most lives) when I have felt for a time as if a thick curtain had fallen on all its interest and romance, to shut me out from anything save dull endurance any more. Never has that curtain dropped so heavy and blank, as when my way in life lay stretched out straight before me through the newly-entered road of apprenticeship to Joe.
There was a gay fiction among us that we were constantly enjoying ourselves, and a skeleton truth that we never did. To the best of my belief, our case was in the last respect a rather common one.
If you can't get to be uncommon through going straight, you'll never get to do it through going crooked. [...] live well and die happy.
I verily believe that her not remembering and not minding in the least, made me cry again, inwardly - and that is the sharpest crying of all.
Mrs Joe was a very clean housekeeper, but had an exquisite art of making her clenliness more umcomfortable and unacceptable than dirt itself. Cleanliness is next to godliness, and some people do the same by their religion.
You have been in every line I have ever read.
and it was not until I began to think, that I began fully to know how wrecked I was, and how the ship in which I had sailed was gone to pieces.
We spent as much money as we could and got as little for it as people could make up their minds to give us. We were always more or less miserable, and most of our acquaintance were in the same condition. There was a gay fiction among us that we were constantly enjoying ourselves, and a skeleton truth that we never did. To the best of my belief, our case was in the last aspect a rather common one.
In a word, it was impossible for me to separate her, in the past or in the present, from the innermost life of my life.
-Why don't you cry again, you little wretch? -Because I'll never cry for you again.
I have a heart to be stabbed in or shot in, I have no doubt, and, of course, if it ceased to beat, I would cease to be. But you know what I mean. I have no softness there, no—sympathy—sentiment—nonsense.
a most excellent man, though I could have wished his trousers not quite so tight in some places and not quite so loose in others.
Estella, to the last hour of my life, you cannot choose but remain part of my character, part of the little good in me, part of the evil. But, in this separation I associate you only with the good, and I will faithfully hold you to that always, for you must have done me far more good than harm, let me feel now what sharp distress I may. O God bless you, God forgive you!.
I was so humiliated, hurt, spurned, offended, angry, sorry--I cannot hit upon the right name for the smart--God knows what its name was--that tears started to my eyes.
It is the most miserable thing to feel ashamed of home.
It can't be supposed," said Joe. "Tho' I'm oncommon fond of reading, too." Are you, Joe?" Oncommon. Give me," said Joe, "a good book, or a good newspaper, and sit me down afore a good fire, and I ask no better. Lord!" he continued, after rubbing his knees a little, "when you do come to a J and a O, and says you, 'Here, at last, is a J-O, Joe,' how interesting reading is!.
My father’s family name being Pirrip, and my Christian name Philip, my infant tongue could make of both names nothing longer or more explicit than Pip. So, I called myself Pip, and came to be called Pip.
All other swindlers upon earth are nothing to the self-swindlers, and with such pretences did I cheat myself. Surely a curious thing. That I should innocently take a bad half-crown of somebody else's manufacture, is reasonable enough; but that I should knowingly reckon the spurious coin of my own make, as good money!.
Then I'm sorry to say, I've eat your pie.
It would have been cruel in Miss Havisham, horribly cruel, to practise on the susceptibility of a poor boy, and to torture me through all these years with a vain hope and an idle pursuit, if she had reflected on the gravity of what she did. But I think she did not. I think that in the endurance of her own trial, she forgot mine, Estella.
I kissed her cheek as she turned it to me. I think I would have gone through a great deal to kiss her cheek. But I felt the kiss was given to the coarse common boy as a piece of money might have been, and that it was worth nothing.
Out of my thoughts! You are part of my existence, part of myself. You have been in every line I have ever read, since I first came here, the rough common boy whose poor heart you wounded even then.
...and to-morrow looked in my face more steadily than I could look at it.