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Margaret George quotes (showing 1-30 of 49)

“So I learned two things that night, and the next day, from him: the perfection of a moment, and the fleeting nature of it.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“It is almost impossible to describe happiness, because at the time it feels entirely natural, as if all the rest of your life has been the aberration; only in retrospect does it swim into focus as the rare and precious thing it is. When it is present, it seems to be eternal, abiding forever, and there is no need to examine it or clutch it. Later, when it has evaporated, you stare in dismay at your empty palm, where only a little of the perfume lingers to prove that once it was there, and now is flown.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“When he comes into a room, you give a little gasp, deep inside, far inside,' someone once said when trying to describe what it meant to love.”
Margaret George, Helen of Troy
tags: love
“The cure for a broken heart is simple, my lady. A hot bath and a good night's sleep.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“I loved him so, even his past was precious to me. I found myself kissing each mark, thinking, I would have had it never happen, I would wish it away, taking him further and further back to a time when he had known no disappointments, no battles, no wounds, as I erased each one. To make him again like Caesarion. Yet if we take the past away from those we love - even to protect them - do we not steal their very selves?”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“Things do not happen, we must make them happen”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“In my experience, there are two things that no one will admit to: having no sense of humor and being susceptible to flattery.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“I had a desire to see something besides my own shores, if only to be content to return to them someday. If I wish to live in my native land and love her, it should not be out of ignorance.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“Thus we use our supposed "knowledge" of others to speak on their behalf, and condemn them for their words we ourselves put in their silent mouths.”
Margaret George, The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
“Defeat I can endure with cheerfulness, my lady. But betrayal is like taking the wind from my sails, or the earth from beneath my feet. It chills my spirits like a rainy day, and all I can do is draw the curtains and cry into my pillow.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“The strong look for more strength, the weak for excuses.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“What is one person's diversion may be another's supreme test.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“To love someone is to catch your breath whenever he walks in the room.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“Perhaps life is like an hour glass, with dear ones the sand that slips from the upper glass--the earth--into the second--eternity.”
Margaret George, Elizabeth I
“Now I felt the long-forgotten urgency of lovemaking, when it seems one's human selves leave, to be replaced by hungry beasts bolting their food. Gone are the civilized beings who talk of manners and journeys and letters; in their places are two bodies straining to give birth to a burst of inhuman pleasure followed by a great, floating nothingness. An explosion of life followed by death - in this we live, and in this we foreshadow our own sweet deaths.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“Oh, he was just angry, we tell ourselves when someone blurts out something he later apologizes for. But a word, once spoken, lingers forever; to keep peace we pretend to forget, but we never do. Strange that a spoken word can have such lasting power when words carved on stone monuments vanish in spite of all our efforts to preserve them. What we would lose persists, lodged in our minds, and what we would keep is lost to water, moths, moss.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“Boredom is that awful state of inaction when the very medicine ― that is, activity ― which could solve it, is seen as odious.
Archery? It is too cold, and besides, the butts need re-covering; the rats have been at the straw.
Music? To hear it is tedious; to compose it, too taxing. And so on.
Of all the afflictions, boredom is ultimately the most unmanning.
Eventually, it transforms you into a great nothing who does nothing ― a cousin to sloth and a brother to melancholy.”
Margaret George, The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
“Lying in bed, half-covered by the blankets, I would drowsily ask why he had come to my door that night long ago. It had become a ritual for us, as it does for all lovers: where, when, why? remember...I understand even old people rehearse their private religion of how they first loved, most guarded of secrets. And he would answer, sleep blurring his words, "Because I had to." The question and the answer were always the same. Why? Because I had to.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“Yet we always envy others, comparing our shadows to their sunlit sides.”
Margaret George, The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by His Fool, Will Somers
“Mary awoke from her nightmare with a pounding heart, convinced that she had only imagined Elizabeth's cruel plot. A full moon was shining into her chamber, illuminating everything around her in silvery light. That was when she noticed for the first time that there were bars on her window.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“But marrying within one's own family can get monotonous. One has heard all the same family stories, knows all the jokes and all the same recipes. No novelty.”
Margaret George, Memoirs of Cleopatra
“The most wicked criminals have God on their lips at all times, for God is the only one who can stomach them.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“I was ever the realist, sometimes to my sorrow. But seldom to my regret.”
Margaret George, Elizabeth I
“Hope is a straw hat hanging beside a window covered with frost.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
tags: hope
“Heart of my heart, bone of my bone, spirit of my spirt, we cannot be held.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“Kindness is stronger than iron bars.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“My firm resolve was to escape my wicked cousin and my English captors. But the wind was howling, and rain was coming down in sheets. And even as I relaxed in a hot bath in my snug apartments, the clamor of the storm outside was counseling me to be patient and wait.

A wise woman never does anything in a hurry.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
“...Jesus saw the eternal in the everyday. Your last day on earth should be spent as you spent all your others-- doing your daily tasks with love and honesty... An ordinary day is, perhaps, the most holy of all.”
Margaret George, Mary, Called Magdalene
“One always imagines that the days that change one’s life must be marked with something extraordinary in nature—storms and lightning, darkness at noon, and so on. In truth they are indistinguishable from any other, which is one reason we feel mocked, as if the world is telling us we are inconsequential.”
Margaret George, Elizabeth I
“Mary was like a caged tiger in the first days of her captivity. Keen, alert, and watchful, she listened tensely each dawn for the key that unlocked her door. After breakfast she watched the road for messengers, pacing back and forth like a confined feline.

But no messengers ever came.

Elizabeth had abandoned her. Or forgotten her.

And the days passed.

Little by little, the Queen of Scots grew accustomed to her captivity. She no longer heard the key in the lock, or the footsteps outside her door. More often than not it was the maid's cheerful voice that woke her, along with the hand on Mary's shoulder and the delicious smells wafting from the breakfast tray.”
Margaret George, Mary Queen of Scotland & The Isles
tags: luxury

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