The Monk Quotes

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The Monk The Monk by Matthew Lewis
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“Man was born for society. However little He may be attached to the World, He never can wholly forget it, or bear to be wholly forgotten by it. Disgusted at the guilt or absurdity of Mankind, the Misanthrope flies from it: He resolves to become an Hermit, and buries himself in the Cavern of some gloomy Rock. While Hate inflames his bosom, possibly He may feel contented with his situation: But when his passions begin to cool; when Time has mellowed his sorrows, and healed those wounds which He bore with him to his solitude, think you that Content becomes his Companion? Ah! no, Rosario. No longer sustained by the violence of his passions, He feels all the monotony of his way of living, and his heart becomes the prey of Ennui and weariness. He looks round, and finds himself alone in the Universe: The love of society revives in his bosom, and He pants to return to that world which He has abandoned. Nature loses all her charms in his eyes: No one is near him to point out her beauties, or share in his admiration of her excellence and variety. Propped upon the fragment of some Rock, He gazes upon the tumbling waterfall with a vacant eye, He views without emotion the glory of the setting Sun. Slowly He returns to his Cell at Evening, for no one there is anxious for his arrival; He has no comfort in his solitary unsavoury meal: He throws himself upon his couch of Moss despondent and dissatisfied, and wakes only to pass a day as joyless, as monotonous as the former.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“An author, whether good or bad, or between both, is an animal whom every body is privileged to attack: for though all are not able to write books, all conceive themselves able to judge them.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Man of an hard heart! Hear me, Proud, Stern, and Cruel! You could have saved me; you could have restored me to happiness and virtue, but would not! You are the destroyer of my Soul; You are my Murderer, and on you fall the curse of my death and my unborn Infant’s! Insolent in your yet-unshaken virtue, you disdained the prayers of a Penitent; But God will show mercy, though you show none. And where is the merit of your boasted virtue? What temptations have you vanquished? Coward! you have fled from it, not opposed seduction. But the day of Trial will arrive! Oh! then when you yield to impetuous passions! when you feel that Man is weak, and born to err; When shuddering you look back upon your crimes, and solicit with terror the mercy of your God, Oh! in that fearful moment think upon me! Think upon your Cruelty! Think upon Agnes, and despair of pardon!”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“She sealed his lips with a wanton kiss; 'Though I forgive your breaking your vows to heaven, I expect you to keep your vows to me.”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“I must have your soul ; must have it mine, and mine for ever.”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
tags: satan
“No one is adequate to comprehending the misery of my lot! Fate obliges me to be constantly in movement: I am not permitted to pass more than a fortnight in the same place. I have no Friend in the world, and from the restlessness of my destiny I never can acquire one. Fain would I lay down my miserable life, for I envy those who enjoy the quiet of the Grave: But Death eludes me, and flies from my embrace. In vain do I throw myself in the way of danger. I plunge into the Ocean; The Waves throw me back with abhorrence upon the shore: I rush into fire; The flames recoil at my approach: I oppose myself to the fury of Banditti; Their swords become blunted, and break against my breast: The hungry Tiger shudders at my approach, and the Alligator flies from a Monster more horrible than itself. God has set his seal upon me, and all his Creatures respect this fatal mark!”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“You are mine, and Heaven itself cannot rescue you from my power.”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“Ambrosio was yet to learn, that to an heart unacquainted with her, Vice is ever most dangerous when lurking behind the Mask of Virtue.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Open your eyes, Ambrosio, and be prudent. Hell is your lot; You are doomed to eternal perdition; Nought lies beyond your grave but a gulph of devouring flames.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Authorship is a mania to conquer which no reasons are sufficiently strong.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“But who for a moment can deceive the eyes of love?”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“A bad composition carries its own punishment—contempt and ridicule; a good one excites envy and entails upon its author a thousand mortifications; he finds himself assailed by partial and ill-humored criticism; one man finds fault with the plan, another with the style, a third with the precept which strives to inculcate; and they who cannot succeed in finding fault with the book, employ themselves in stigmatizing its author: they maliciously rake out from obscurity every little circumstance which may throw ridicule upon his private character or conduct and aim at wounding the man since they cannot hurt the writer.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Now shame on the coward soul, which wants the courage either to be a firm friend, or an open enemy.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“He had long observed with disapprobation and contempt the superstition which governed Madrid's inhabitants. His good sense had pointed out to him the artifices of the monks, and the gross absurdity of their miracles, wonders, and suppositious relics. He blushed to see his countrymen, the dupes of deceptions, so ridiculous, and only wished for an opportunity to free them from their monkish fetters. That opportunity, so long desired in vain, was at length presented to him. He resolved not to let it slip, but to set before the people, in glaring colours, how enormous were the abuses but too frequently practised in monasteries, and how unjustly public esteem was bestowed indiscriminately upon all who wore a religious habit. He longed for the moment destined to unmask the hypocrites, and convince his countrymen, that a sanctified exterior does not always hide a virtuous heart.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“He, who thought it necessary to maintain himself in her good graces, strove to console her under her disappointment by committing a little violence upon truth.”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“By this time he had discovered that his neighbour was not very conversible; But whether her silence proceeded from pride, discretion, timidity, or idiotism, he was still unable to decide.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“I will go," said Lorenzo. And Lorenzo stayed, where he was.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
tags: go, stay
“Poor Matilda! She sleeps in the Grave, and her broken heart throbs no more with passion.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“In short, to enter the lists of literature is wilfully to expose yourself to the arrows of neglect, ridicule, envy, and disappointment. Whether you write well or ill, be assured that you will not escape from blame...”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Methinks, Oh! vain ill-judging Book,
I see thee cast a wishful look,
Where reputations won and lost are
In famous row called Paternoster.
Incensed to find your precious olio
Buried in unexplored port-folio,
You scorn the prudent lock and key,
And pant well bound and gilt to see
Your Volume in the window set
Of Stockdale, Hookham, or Debrett.

Go then, and pass that dangerous bourn
Whence never Book can back return:
And when you find, condemned, despised,
Neglected, blamed, and criticised,
Abuse from All who read you fall,
(If haply you be read at all
Sorely will you your folly sigh at,
And wish for me, and home, and quiet.

Assuming now a conjuror’s office, I
Thus on your future Fortune prophesy: —
Soon as your novelty is o’er,
And you are young and new no more,
In some dark dirty corner thrown,
Mouldy with damps, with cobwebs strown,
Your leaves shall be the Book-worm’s prey;

Or sent to Chandler–Shop away,
And doomed to suffer public scandal,
Shall line the trunk, or wrap the candle!

But should you meet with approbation,
And some one find an inclination
To ask, by natural transition
Respecting me and my condition;
That I am one, the enquirer teach,
Nor very poor, nor very rich;
Of passions strong, of hasty nature,
Of graceless form and dwarfish stature;
By few approved, and few approving;
Extreme in hating and in loving;

Abhorring all whom I dislike,
Adoring who my fancy strike;
In forming judgements never long,
And for the most part judging wrong;
In friendship firm, but still believing
Others are treacherous and deceiving,
And thinking in the present aera
That Friendship is a pure chimaera:
More passionate no creature living,
Proud, obstinate, and unforgiving,
But yet for those who kindness show,
Ready through fire and smoke to go.

Again, should it be asked your page,
‘Pray, what may be the author’s age?’
Your faults, no doubt, will make it clear,
I scarce have seen my twentieth year,
Which passed, kind Reader, on my word,
While England’s Throne held George the Third.

Now then your venturous course pursue:
Go, my delight! Dear Book, adieu!”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“To one laden with crime, death came armed with double terror.”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“I have abandoned the world and its delights for ever: Nothing now remains, Nothing now has charms for me, but your friendship, but your affection. If I lose that, Father! Oh! if I lose that, tremble at the effects of my despair!”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“Be cautious not to utter a syllable! Step not out of the circle, and as you love yourself, dare not to look upon my face!”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Your heart new to the world, and full of warmth and sensibility, receives its first impressions with eagerness. Artless yourself, you suspect not others of deceit; and viewing the world through the medium of your own truth and innocence, you fancy all who surround you to deserve your confidence and esteem. What pity, that these gay visions must soon be dissipated! What pity, that you must soon discover the baseness of mankind, and guard against your fellow-creatures, as against your foes!”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“Sometimes I felt the bloated Toad, hideous and pampered with the poisonous vapours of the dungeon, dragging his loathsome length along my bosom: Sometimes the quick cold Lizard rouzed me leaving his slimy track upon my face, and entangling itself in the tresses of my wild and matted hair: Often have I at waking found my fingers ringed with the long worms which bred in the corrupted flesh of my Infant.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Lost is the time which is not past in love.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“I beheld before me an animated Corse. Her countenance was long and haggard; Her cheeks and lips were bloodless; The paleness of death was spread over her features, and her eye-balls fixed stedfastly upon me were lustreless and hollow.
I gazed upon the Spectre with horror too great to be described. My blood was frozen in my veins. I would have called for aid, but the sound expired, ere it could pass my lips. My nerves were bound up in impotence, and I remained in the same attitude inanimate as a Statue.
The visionary Nun looked upon me for some minutes in silence: There was something petrifying in her regard. At length in a low sepulchral voice She pronounced the following words.

"Raymond! Raymond! Thou art mine!
Raymond! Raymond! I am thine!
In thy veins while blood shall roll,
I am thine!
Thou art mine!
Mine thy body! Mine thy soul!---”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“did she know the inexpressible charm of modesty, how irresistibly it enthralls the heart of man, how firmly it charms him to the throne of beauty”
Matthew Lewis, The Monk
“She was about forty: In her youth She had been a Beauty; But her charms had been upon that large scale which can but ill sustain the shock of years: However She still possessed some remains of them.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk
“Ambrosio, learn to know me better. I love you for your virtues: Lose them, and with them you lose my affections. I look upon you as a Saint; Prove to me that you are no more than Man, and I quit you with disgust.”
Matthew Gregory Lewis, The Monk

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