Extracts and Quotations

i find that, sometimes, quotations are taken out of context.

For example, we read “The pen is mightier than the sword.” This conveys a particular meaning. The preceding two lines (in the 1839 play by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, “Richelieu; Or the Conspiracy“) are:

“True, This! —
Beneath the rule of men entirely great”

This puts things in a completely different light 🙂

The whole set of lines:

“True, This! —
Beneath the rule of men entirely great
The pen is mightier than the sword….”

i also find, sometimes, quotations without citations of sources. This is worrying because, far too frequently, we find mis-attributions. An innocent mis-attribution is understandable but when it causes people (and, perhaps, history) to assume that an individual held a particular view (based on the mis-attribution), it causes damage.

For example, a cursory search online will show that many many attribute the following lines to Nelson Mandela: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.” The lines are from a book “A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles” by Marianne Williamson.

The extracts and quotes published here are from the Bibliophile’s reading notes. Each has source(s), and (where appropriate) notes on the context. In case, you spot any error, request you to let me know and i will correct it.

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