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Les Diaboliques

Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly

Top 10 Best Quotes

“For in Paris, whenever God puts a pretty woman there (the streets), the Devil, in reply, immediately puts a fool to keep her.”

“Extreme civilization robs crime of its frightful poetry, and prevents the writer from restoring it. That would be too dreadful, say those good souls who want everything to be prettified, even the horrible. In the name of philanthropy, imbecile criminologists reduce the punishment, and inept moralists the crime, and what is more they reduce the crime only in order to reduce the punishment. Yet the crimes of extreme civilization are undoubtedly more atrocious than those of extreme barbarism, by virtue of their refinement, of the corruption they imply and of their superior degree of intellectualism. ("A Woman's Vengeance")”

“They had...finished their lives before their death – which is not always the end of life and often comes long before the end.”

“Yet, whether to the glory or to the shame of human nature, in what we call pleasure (with an excess of scorn, perhaps) there are abysses as deep as those of love.”

“Beauty is single. Only ugliness is multiple, and even then its multiplicity is soon exhausted.”

“He was terrified by the sublime horror of it, for intensity of feeling, carried to this degree, is sublime. ("A Woman's Vengeance")”

“Fools – in other words most people – imagine that it would be a wonderful achievement to be able to recover our youth; but those who know life are aware how little it would profit us. ("A Woman's Vengeance")”

“My good fellow,” said Mesnil, stopping, “ever since the creation of the world there have been men like me specially intended to astonish like you.”

“He had a reputation in society as a man with a lively wit, whose gaiety was pleasant and formidable – which all gaiety must be in a society which would despise you if, while amusing it, you did not make it tremble a little. ("A Woman's Vengeance")”

“And, in fact, if these crimes appeal less to the senses, they appeal more to the mind; and the mind, in the last analysis, is the profoundest part of us. For the novelist, therefore, there is a new type of tragedy to be derived from these crimes, more intellectual than physical in character, which do not really seem to be crimes to the superficial judgement of old materialistic societies because they do not involve bloodshed, and murder is committed only in the sphere of feelings and manners.”

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Book Keywords:

sublime, decadence, lust, death, astonishment, punishment, horror, beauty, pleasure, devil, paris, fools, dissolution, society, god, youth, crime, life, wit, civilization, atheism, love, ugliness

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