Desolation Island Quotes

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Desolation Island (Aubrey/Maturin, #5) Desolation Island by Patrick O'Brian
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Desolation Island Quotes (showing 1-15 of 15)
“To tell the truth, sir, I believe I had rather sit in the shelter for a while. The cabbage seems to have turned my inward parts to water.’
Nonsense,’ said Stephen, ‘it is the most wholesome cabbage I have ever come across in the whole of my career. I hope, Mr. Herapath, that you are not going to join in the silly weak womanish unphilosophical mewling and puling about the cabbage. So it is a little yellow in certain lights, so it is a little sharp, so it smells a little strange: so much the better, say I. At least that will stop the insensate Phaeacian hogs from abusing it, as they abuse the brute creation, stuffing themselves with flesh until what little brain they have is drowned in fat. A virtuous esculent! Even its boldest detractors, ready to make the most hellish declarations and to swear through a nine-inch plank that the cabbage makes them fart and rumble, cannot deny that it cured their purpurae. Let them rumble till the heavens shake and resound again; let them fart fire and brimstone, the Gomorrhans, I will not have a single case of scurvy on my hands, the sea-surgeon’s shame, while there is a cabbage to be culled.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“The event caused a certain amount of ribaldry and a fair number of sentences depriving men of their grog for playing the God-damned fool, an offense that came under Article Thirty-six 'All other crimes not capital, committed by any person or persons in the fleet, which are not mentioned in this act, or for which no punishment is hereby directed to be inflicted, shall be punished according to the laws and customs in such cases used at sea,' also known as the captain's cloak or cover-all.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“They made him [Stephen] a little canvas boat, and it was thought that if he were obliged to wear two sea-elephant's bladders, blown up and attached to his person, he could not come to harm in such a placid sea; but after an unfortunate experience in which he became involved in his umbrella and it was found that the bladders buoyed up his meagre hams alone, so that only the presence of Babbington's Newfoundland preserved him, he was forbidden to go unaccompanied.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“You do not mean there is danger of peace?", cried Jack.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“Jack was already mother-naked when he heard the cry and saw the splash. He slipped from the gunwale into the clear water, made out the vague form at a surprising depth, dived, fished it up, swam to the ship, now a hundred yards away, roared for a line, passed the inanimate Herapath up the side, and followed himself. 'Mr Pullings,'he cried, very angry. 'Put an end to this infernal hallooing instantly. Always the same God-damned foolery, every time a man goes overboard. Damn you all for a mob of mad lunatics. Get along forward. Silence fore and aft.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“They played, not beautifully but deep, ignoring their often discordant strings and striking right into the heart of the music they knew best, the true notes acting as their milestones. On the poop above their heads, where the weary helmsmen tended the new steering-oar and Babbington stood at the con, the men listened intently; it was the first sound of human life that they had heard, apart from the brief Christmas merriment, for a time they could scarcely measure.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“Sure, it is weak and illiberal to speak slightingly of any considerable body of men; yet it so happens that the only judges I have known have been froward companions, and it occurs to me that not only are they subjected to the evil influence of authority but also to that of righteous indignation, which is even more deleterious. Those who judge and sentence criminals address them with an unbridled, vindictive righteousness that would be excessive in an archangel and that is indecent to the highest degree in one sinner speaking to another, and he defenceless. Righteous indignation every day, and publicly applauded!”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“Oh, the odious wench.How I wish I were rid of her. I have always loathed women, from clew to earring; hook, line and sinker; root and branch.I always said this would happen, you remember; I was against it from the start. Damn it for a flibbertigibbet, the hussy.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“Of course she will put on a cap,’ said Sophie, with a pitying look. ‘How could she possibly receive strange gentlemen without a cap? But her hair must be dressed under it.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“Nonsense,’ said Stephen, ‘it is the most wholesome cabbage I have ever come across in the whole of my career. I hope, Mr Herapath, that you are not going to join in the silly weak womanish unphilosophical mewling and puling about the cabbage. So it is a little yellow in certain lights, so it is a little sharp, so it smells a little strange: so much the better, say I. At least that will stop the insensate Phaeacian hogs from abusing it, as they abuse the brute creation, stuffing themselves with flesh until what little brain they have is drowned in fat. A virtuous esculent! Even its boldest detractors, ready to make the most hellish declarations and to swear through a nine-inch plank that the cabbage makes them fart and rumble, cannot deny that it cured their purpurae. Let them rumble till the heavens shake and resound again; let them fart fire and brimstone, the Gomorrhans, I will not have a single case of scurvy on my hands, the sea-surgeon’s shame, while there is a cabbage to be culled.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“There is a proverb in Ireland,’ said Stephen, ‘to the effect that there is good to be found even in an Englishman – is minic Gall maith. It is not often used, however.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“He cannot hold his wine; he has no head for it. Why, on no more than three glasses, for I absolutely poured him out no more, he was on the point of singing Yankee Doodle. Yankee Doodle, in a King’s ship, upon my sacred honour!”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island
“borborygmus,”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island: Aubrey/Maturin series, book 5
“Well, Killick, I trust you are not rushing into matrimony without due consideration? Matrimony is a very serious thing.’ ‘Oh no, sir. I considered of it: I considered of it, why, the best part of twenty minutes. There was three to choose on, and this here –’ looking fondly at his purchase – ‘was the pick of the bunch.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island: Aubrey/Maturin series, book 5
“Good day to you, ma’am,’ said Stephen, opening Mrs Wogan’s door. ‘I believe you may take some air at last. The sky is clear, the sun shines bright with a surprising warmth, and although our poop is now the scene of strange activity, the gangway remains, the windward, or weather gangway, ma’am. And we had best profit by the morning while it lasts.”
Patrick O'Brian, Desolation Island

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