Hard Times Quotes

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Hard Times Hard Times by Charles Dickens
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Hard Times Quotes (showing 1-30 of 33)
“There is a wisdom of the head, and... there is a wisdom of the heart.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“She was the most wonderful woman for prowling about the house. How she got from one story to another was a mystery beyond solution. A lady so decorous in herself, and so highly connected, was not to be suspected of dropping over the banisters or sliding down them, yet her extraordinary facility of locomotion suggested the wild idea.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“How could you give me life, and take from me all the inappreciable things that raise it from the state of conscious death? Where are the graces of my soul? Where are the sentiments of my heart? What have you done, oh, Father, What have you done with the garden that should have bloomed once, in this great wilderness here? Said louisa as she touched her heart.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“He thought of the number of girls and women she had seen marry, how many homes with children in them she had seen grow up around her, how she had contentedly pursued her own lone quite path-for him.

~ Stephen speaking of Rachael”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Do the wise thing and the kind thing too, and make the best of us and not the worst.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Now, what I want is Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else. You can only form the minds of reasoning animals upon Facts; nothing else will ever be of any service to them.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“From the beginning, she had sat looking at him fixedly. As he now leaned back in his chair, and bent his deep-set eyes upon her in his turn, perhaps he might have seen one wavering moment in her, when she was impelled to throw herself upon his breast, and give him the pent-up confidences of her heart. But, to see it, he must have overleaped at a bound the artificial barriers he had for many years been erecting, between himself and all those subtle essences of humanity which will elude the utmost cunning of algebra until the last trumpet ever to be sounded shall blow even algebra to wreck. The barriers were too many and too high for such a leap. With his unbending, utilitarian, matter-of-fact face, he hardened her again; and the moment shot away into the plumbless depths of the past, to mingle with all the lost opportunities that are drowned there.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“There was a piece of ornamental water immediately below the parapet, on the other side, into which Mr. James Harthouse had a very strong inclination to pitch Mr. Thomas Gradgrind Junior.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“It is said that every life has its roses and thorns; there seemed, however, to have been a misadventure or mistake in Stephen’s case, whereby somebody else had become possessed of his roses, and he had become possessed of somebody else’s thorns in addition to his own.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“It is known, to the force of a single pound weight, what the engine will do; but, not all the calculators of the National Debt can tell me the capacity for good or evil, for love or hatred, for patriotism or discontent, for the decomposition of virtue into vice, or the reverse.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Depth answers only to depth .”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Sir," returned Mrs. Sparsit, " I cannot say that i have heard him precisely snore, and therefore must not make that statement. But on winter evenings, when he has fallen asleep at his table, I have heard him, what I should prefer to describe as partially choke. I have heard him on such occasions produce sounds of a nature similar to what may be heard in dutch clocks. Not," said Mrs. Sparsit, with a lofty sense of giving strict evidence, " That I would convey any imputation on his moral character. Far from it.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“You have been so careful of me that I never had a child's heart.
You have trained me so well that I never dreamed a child's dream. You have dealt so wisely with me, Father ,from my cradle to this hour, that I never had a child's belief or a child's fear.
Mr. Gradgrind was quite moved by his success, and by this testimony to it. " My dear Louisa," said he, you abundantly repay my care. Kiss me, my dear girl.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“He had been for many years, a quiet silent man, associating but little with other men, and used to companionship with his own thoughts. He had never known before the strength of the want in his heart for the frequent recognition of a nod, a look, a word; or the immense amount of relief that had been poured into it by drops through such small means.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“The last trumpet ever to be sounded shall blow even algebra to wreck.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“But the sun itself, however beneficent, generally, was less kind to Coketown than hard frost, and rarely looked intently into any of its closer regions without engendering more death than life. So does the eye of Heaven itself become an evil eye, when incapable or sordid hands are interposed between it and the thing it looks upon to bless.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“The only difference between us and the professors of virtue or benevolence, or philanthropy - never mind the name - is that we know it is all meaningless, and say so, while they know it equally and will never say so.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“A year or two younger than his eminently practical friend, Mr. Bounderby looked older; his seven or eight and forty might have had the seven or eight added to it again, without surprising anybody. He had not much hair. One might have fancied he had talked it off; and that what was left, all standing up in disorder, was in that condition from being constantly blown about by his windy boastfulness.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Any capitalist . . . who had made sixty thousand pounds out of sixpence, always professed to wonder why the sixty thousand nearest Hands didn't each make sixty thousand pounds out of sixpence, and more or less reproached them every one for not accomplishing the little feat. What I did you can do. Why don't you go and do it?”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Weel, ma´am' said Stephen, making the best of it, with a smile; 'when I ha´finished off, I mun quit this part, and try another. Fortnet or misfortnet, a man can but try; there´s now to be done wi´out tryin -cept laying down and dying.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Stephen Blackpool fall into the loneliest of lives, the life of solitude among a familiar crowd. The stranger in the land who looks into ten thousand faces for some answering look and never finds it, is in cheering society as compared with him who passes ten averted faces daily, that were once the countenances of friends”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“The speaker, and the schoolmaster, and the third grown person present, all backed a little, and swept with their eyes the inclined plane of little vessels then and there arranged in order, ready to have imperial gallons of facts poured into them until they were full to the brim.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“When the Devil goeth about like a roaring lion, he goeth about in a shape by which few but savages and hunters are attracted. But, when he is trimmed, smoothed, and varnished, according to the mode: when he is aweary of vice, and aweary of virtue, used up as to brimstone, and used up as to bliss; then, whether he take to the serving out of red tape, or to the kindling of red fire, he is the very Devil.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Now, what I want is Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Indeed, as he eagerly sparkled at them from the cellarage before mentioned, he seemed a kind of cannon loaded to the muzzle with facts, and prepared to blow them clean out of the regions of childhood at one discharge. He seemed a galvanizing apparatus, too, charged with a grim mechanical substitute for the tender young imaginations that were to be stormed away.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Make the betht of uth; not the wurtht!”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“Now you see, Tom," said Mr. Harthouse (...); "every man is selfish in everything he does, and I am exactly like the rest of my fellow-creatures.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“The emphasis was helped by the speaker's hair, which bristled on the skirts of his bald head, a plantation of firs to keep the wind from its shining surface, all covered with knobs, like the crust of a plum pie, as if the head had scarcely warehouse-room for the hard facts stored inside.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“was a fundamental principle of the Gradgrind philosophy that everything was to be paid for. Nobody was ever on any account to give anybody anything, or render anybody help without purchase. Gratitude was to be abolished, and the virtues springing from it were not to be. Every inch of the existence of mankind, from birth to death, was to be a bargain across a counter. And if we didn’t get to Heaven that way, it was not a politico-economical place, and we had no business there.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times
“In such terms Mr. Gradgrind always mentally introduced himself, whether to his private circle of acquaintance, or to the public in general. In such terms, no doubt, substituting the words ‘boys and girls,’ for ‘sir,’ Thomas Gradgrind now presented Thomas Gradgrind to the little pitchers before him, who were to be filled so full of facts.”
Charles Dickens, Hard Times

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