Wednesday, January 19, 2005
The Middle Ages
Charles Dickens, Dombey and Son
(1848), chapter XXVII:
'Oh!' cried Mrs Skewton, with a faded little scream of rapture, 'the Castle is charming! - associations of the Middle Ages - and all that - which is so truly exquisite. Don't you dote upon the Middle Ages, Mr Carker?'
'Very much, indeed,' said Mr Carker.
'Such charming times!' cried Cleopatra. 'So full of faith! So vigorous and forcible! So picturesque! So perfectly removed from commonplace! Oh dear! If they would only leave us a little more of the poetry of existence in these terrible days!'
'Those darling byegone times, Mr Carker,' said Cleopatra, 'with their delicious fortresses, and their dear old dungeons, and their delightful places of torture, and their romantic vengeances, and their picturesque assaults and sieges, and everything that makes life truly charming! How dreadfully we have degenerated!'
'Yes, we have fallen off deplorably,' said Mr Carker.