Epigrams


Proust is also master of the short sentence, the piercing observation that needs no embellishment.

 Faced with the thoughts, the actions of a woman whom we love, we are as completely at a loss as the world’s first natural philosophers must have been, face to face with the phenomena of nature, before their science had been elaborated and had cast a ray of light over the unknown. (II,220)

The culminating point of her [the courtesan’s] day is not the moment in which she dresses herself for society, but that in which she undresses herself for a man. (II,230)

It is always thus, impelled by a state of mind which is destined not to last, that we make our irrevocable decisions. (II,209)

I was in no way disturbed at finding my doctor a bore; what I expected of him was that, thanks to an art whose laws escaped me, he should pronounce on the subject  my health an infallible oracle after consultation with my entrails. (II,198)

Perhaps it is only in really vicious lives that the problem of morality can arise in all it disquieting strength. (II,180)

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