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 :: 1903-1974, British Critic

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No city should be too large for a man to walk out of in a morning.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Cities and City Life]

 

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No one over thirty-five is worth meeting who has not something to teach us, --something more than we could learn for ourselves, from a book.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Wisdom]

 

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No taste is so acquired as that for someone else's quality of mind.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Taste]

 

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Our memories are card indexes consulted and then returned in disorder by authorities whom we do not control.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Memory]

 

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Slums may well be breeding-grounds of crime, but middle-class suburbs are incubators of apathy and delirium.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Crime and Criminals]

 

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The artist is a member of the leisured classes who cannot pay for his leisure.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Arts and Artists]

 

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The civilized are those who get more out of life than the uncivilized, and for this we are not likely to be forgiven.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Civilization]

 

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The dread of loneliness is greater than the fear of bondage, so we get married.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Marriage]

 

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The English masses are lovable: they are kind, decent, tolerant, practical and not stupid. The tragedy is that they are too many of them, and that they are aimless, having outgrown the servile functions for which they were encouraged to multiply. One day these huge crowds will have to seize power because there will be nothing else for them to do, and yet they neither demand power nor are ready to make use of it; they will learn only to be bored in a new way.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Masses]

 

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The goal of every culture is to decay through over-civilization; the factors of decadence, -- luxury, skepticism, weariness and superstition, -- are constant. The civilization of one epoch becomes the manure of the next.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Decadence]

 

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The more books we read, the clearer it becomes that the true function of a writer is to produce a masterpiece and that no other task is of any consequence.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Writers and Writing]

 

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The one way to get thin is to re-establish a purpose in life.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Food and Eating]

 

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The only happy talkers are dandies who extract pleasure from the very perishability of their material and who would not be able to tolerate the isolation of all other forms of composition; for most good talkers, when they have run down, are miserable; they know that they have betrayed themselves, that they have taken material which should have a life of its own, to dispense it in noises upon the air.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Speech]

 

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The person who is master of their passions is reason's slave.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Reason]

 

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The reward of art is not fame or success but intoxication: that is why so many bad artists are unable to give it up.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Arts and Artists]

 

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The true index of a man's character is the health of his wife.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Wives]

 

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The worst vice of the solitary is the worship of his food.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Solitude]

 

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There are many who dare not kill themselves for fear of what the neighbors will say.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Suicide]

 

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There cannot be a personal God without a pessimistic religion. As soon as there is a personal God he is a disappointing God.
~ Cyril Connolly - [God]

 

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There is immunity in reading, immunity in formal society, in office routine, in the company of old friends and in the giving of officious help to strangers, but there is no sanctuary in one bed from the memory of another. The past with its anguish will break through every defense-line of custom and habit; we must sleep and therefore we must dream.
~ Cyril Connolly - [Grief]

 

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