Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Worst

Subject:  Believing the Worst 
Quote:  “You’ve always been a sweet innocent looking creature, Jane, and all the time underneath nothing has ever surprised you, you always believe the worst.”
            “The worst is so often true,” murmured Miss Marple.
Character:  Mrs. Ruth Van Rydock and Miss Jane Marple
Chapter/Story:  1
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder With Mirrors (They Do It With Mirrors), 1952

Subject:  Thinking the Worst
Quote:  “Always think the worst, eh?” he asked.
            It seemed a curious doctrine to be proceeding from this charming and fragile-looking old lady.
            Oh, yes,” said Miss Marple fervently.  “I always believe the worst.  What is so sad is that one is usually justified in doing so.”
Character:  Inspector Neele and Miss Jane Marple
Chapter/Story:  24--i
Book Title/Copyright:  A Pocket Full of Rye, 1954

World Order

Subject:  World Order
Quote:  “Why do you decry the world we live in?  There are good people in it.  Isn’t muddle a better breeding ground for kindliness and individuality than a world order that’s imposed, a world order that may be right today and wrong tomorrow?  I would rather have a world of kindly, faulty, human beings, than a world of superior robots who’ve said goodbye to pity and understanding and sympathy.”
Character:  Hilary Craven
Chapter/Story:  9
Book Title/Copyright:  So Many Steps to Death, 1954

Work Ethic

Subject:  Work vs. Leisure  
Quote:  “Eh bien, I have got on very well without them [the classics].”
            “Got on!  Got on?  It’s not a question of getting on.  That’s the wrong view altogether.  The classics aren’t a ladder leading to quick success, like a modern correspondence course!  It’s not a man’s working hours that are important—it’s his leisure hours.  That’s the mistake we all make.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot and Dr. Burton
Chapter/Story:  “How It All Came About”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Labors of Hercules, 1947

Subject:  Work Ethic
Quote:  “I sent the boys out.  They do what they can—good lads—good lads all of them, but not what they used to be in the old days.  They don’t come that way nowadays.  Not willing to learn, that’s what it is.  Think they know everything after they’ve only been a couple of years on the job.  And they work to time.  Shocking the way they work to time…. And all this education racket.  It gives them ideas.  They come back and tell us what they think.  They can’t think, most of them, anyway.  All they know is things out of books.  That’s no good in our business.  Bring in the answers—that’s all that’s needed—no thinking.”
Character:  Mr. Goby
Chapter/Story:  12
Book Title/Copyright:  Funerals Are Fatal, 1953


Subject:  Women's Intuition
Quote:  “Les femmes,” he murmured, “they like to think that it is a special weapon that the good God has given them, and for every once that it shows them the truth, at least nine times it leads them astray.”
Character:  M.  Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  “The Under Dog”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Underdog and Other Stories, 1923

Subject:  Positive Ladies
Quote:  “I have made it a rule never to argue with very positive ladies…. It is a waste of time.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  “The Under Dog”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Underdog and Other Stories, 1923

Subject:  Respectable Women
Quote:  “If you read the papers carefully, you will find that often a nice respectable woman of that age leaves a husband she has lived with for twenty years, and sometimes a whole family of children as well, in order to link her life with that of a young man considerably her junior…. In the autumn of a woman’s life, there comes always one mad moment when she longs for romance, for adventure—before it is too late.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  “The Cornish Mystery”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Underdog and Other Stories, 1923

Subject:  Women
Quote:  And all women, without in the least meaning it, consider every man they meet as a possible husband for themselves for their best friend.   
Character:  Anne Beddingfeld
Chapter/Story:  10
Book Title/Copyright:  The Man in the Brown Suit, 1924

Subject:  Women
Quote:  That’s how they do it, these girls!  Othello charmed Desdemona by telling her stories, but, oh, didn’t Desdemona charm Othello by the way she listened?
Character:  Sir Eustace Pedler’s narrative
Chapter/Story:  11  
Book Title/Copyright:  The Man in the Brown Suit, 1924 

Subject:  Women 
Quote:  “And of course there is really nothing a woman enjoys so much as doing all the things she doesn’t like for the sake of someone she does like.  And the more self-willed she is, the more she likes it.”
Character:  Anne Beddingfeld
Chapter/Story:  19
Book Title/Copyright:  The Man in the Brown Suit, 1924 

Subject:  Flattery
Quote:  He [Mr. Mayherne] knew something of the mentality of elderly ladies.  He saw Miss French, infatuated with the good-looking young man, hunting about for pretexts that would bring him to the house.  What more likely than that she should plead ignorance of business, and beg him to help her with her money affairs?  She was enough of a woman of the world to realize that any man is slightly flattered by such an admission of his superiority.
Character:  Omniscient Narrator
Chapter/Story:  “The Witness for the Prosecution”
Book Title/Copyright:  Witness for the Prosecution, 1924

Subject:  Women’s Intuition          
Quote:  “Les femmes…they are marvelous!  They invent haphazard—and by miracle they are right.  Not that it is that, really.  Women observe subconsciously a thousand little details, without knowing that they are doing so.  Their subconscious mind adds these little things together—and they call the result intuition.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot 
Chapter/Story:  13—The Goose Quill
Book Title/Copyright:  The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, 1926

Subject:  Gentlewomen
Quote:  “I remember my dear mother teaching me that a gentlewoman should always be able to control herself in public, however much she may give way in private.”
Character:  Miss Jane Marple
Chapter/Story: 10—“A Christmas Tragedy”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Tuesday Club Murders, 1928

Subject:  Women and Men
Quote:  “You see, I have been on my own pretty well since I was sixteen.  I have never come into contact with many women and I know very little about them, but I know really a lot about men.  And unless a girl can size up a man pretty accurately, and know what she’s got to deal with, she will never get on.  I have got on.”
Character:  Emily Trefusis
Chapter/Story:  11—Emily Sets to Work
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder at Hazelmoor, 1931

Subject:  Pitiable Women
Quote:  “I hate a slobbering female,” said Miss Percehouse.   “I like one who gets up and does things.”
            She looked at Emily sharply.  “I suppose you pity me—lying here never able to get up and walk about?”
            “No,” said Emily thoughtfully, “I don’t know that I do.  I suppose that one can, if one has the determination, always get something out of life.  If you can’t get it one way you get it in another.”
            “Quite right,” said Miss Percehouse.  “You’ve got to take life from a different angle, that’s all.”
Character:  Miss Percehouse and Emily Trefusis
Chapter/Story: 17—Miss Percehouse
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder at Hazelmoor, 1931

Subject:  Women          
Quote:  “She’s a great deal too good for Mr. James Pearson.  Beyond his good looks I wouldn’t say there was much to him in the way of character.”
            “But if she’s a managing young woman that’s what she likes,” said the Chief Constable.
Character:  Inspector Narracott and the Chief Constable
Chapter/Story: 24—Narracott Discusses the Case
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder at Hazelmoor, 1931 

Subject:  Women and Romance
Quote:  “You have, my dear Claude, performed a meritorious action. You have given an unhappy woman what every woman needs—a romance.   A woman tears a passion to pieces and gets no good from it, but a romance can be laid up in lavender and looked at all through the long years to come.  I know human nature, my boy, and I tell you that a woman can feed on such an incident for years.”
Character:  Mr. Parker Pyne
Chapter/Story:  “The Case of the Middle-Aged Wife”
Book Title/Copyright:  Mr. Parker Pyne, Detective, 1932 

Subject: Female Point of View
Quote:  “You do not understand human nature, Mr. Wade.  Still less do you understand feminine human nature.  At the present moment you are, from the feminine point of view, merely a waste product.  Nobody wants you.  What use has a woman for something that no one wants?  None whatever.” 
Character:  Mr. Parker Pyne
Chapter/Story:  “The Case of the Discontented Husband”
Book Title/Copyright:  Mr. Parker Pyne, Detective, 1932

Subject:  Women
Quote:  “If a woman has to choose between a mug and a Don Juan, she will choose Don Juan every time.  Your wife, Mr. Jeffries, is a charming, innocent, high-minded girl, and the only way she is going to get any kick out of her life with you is to believe that she has reformed a rake….”
            “I never want to look at any woman but Elsie,” said Mr. Jeffries simply.
            “Splendid, my boy.... But I shouldn’t let her know that, if I were you.  No woman likes to feel she’s taken on too soft a job.’ 
Character:  Mr. Parker Pyne
Chapter/Story:  “Have You Got Everything You Want?”
Book Title/Copyright:  Mr. Parker Pyne, Detective, 1932 

Subject:  Older Women
Quote:  “I’m worrying about you.  You’ve been squandering your birthright…. What are the years from twenty to forty?  Fettered and bound by personal and emotional relationships.  That’s bound to be.  That’s living.  But later there’s a new stage.  You can think, observe life, discover something about other people and the truth about yourself.  Life becomes real—significant.  You see it as a whole.  Not just one scene—the scene you, as an actor, are playing.  No man or woman is actually himself (or herself) til after forty-five.  That’s when individuality has a chance.” 
Character:  Mr. Parker Pyne
Chapter/Story:  “Problem at Pollensa Bay”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Regatta Mystery, 1932

Subject:  Ladylike Behavior
Quote:  [F]rom the moment I set eyes on her, I felt sure that Mrs. Leidner was a lady.  And a lady, in my experience, very seldom displays curiosity about one’s private affairs.
Character:  Nurse Amy Leatheran’s narrative   
Chapter/Story:  6 – First Evening
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder in Mesopotamia, 1935

Subject:  Women as Realists
Quote:  “As a matter of fact it wouldn’t be safe to tell any man the truth about his wife!  Funnily enough, I’d trust most women with the truth about their husbands.  Women can accept the fact that a man is a rotter, a swindler, a drug taker, a confirmed liar, and a general swine without batting an eyelash and without its impairing their affection for the brute in the least!  Women are wonderful realists.”
Character:  Dr. Giles Reilly 
Chapter/Story:  19 – A New Suspicion
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder in Mesopotamia, 1935 

Subject:  Elderly Ladies
Quote:  “I understand a little the mentality of elderly ladies.  They crave, do they not, for novelty.  They get, perhaps, to the end of a person.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  8 
Book Title/Copyright: Poirot Loses a Client, 1937 

Subject:  Mothers as Earwigs
Quote:  “Oh, definitely a dreary woman.  Rather like an earwig.  She’s a devoted mother.  So are earwigs, I believe.”
Character:  Charles Arundell
Chapter/Story:  14
Book Title/Copyright: Poirot Loses a Client, 1937 

Subject:  Women
Quote:  Sarah was of too imperious a temperament herself to brook a calm assertion of autocracy.  Like many high-spirited women, Sarah believed herself to admire strength.  She had always told herself that she wanted to be mastered.  When she met a man capable of mastering her she found that she did not like it at all! 
Character:  Omniscient narrator
Chapter/Story:  2
Book Title/Copyright:  Appointment with Death, 1937

Subject:  Aunts           
Quote:  “What old ladies fancy they see is very often right.  My Aunt Mildred was positively uncanny!  Have you got any aunts yourself, Thomas?”
            “A mistake!” said Luke.  “Every man should have aunts.  They illustrate the triumph of guesswork over logic.  It is reserved for aunts to know that Mr. A is a rogue because he looks like a dishonest butler they once had.  Other people say, reasonably enough, that a respectable man like Mr. A couldn’t be a crook.  The old ladies are right every time.” 
Character:  Luke Fitzwilliam and Dr. Thomas
Chapter/Story:  18
Book Title/Copyright:  Easy to Kill, 1938

Subject:  Devoted Wives
Quote:  “[T]here can’t be many women quite as idiotic as she [Mrs. Cayley] seems.” 
            “I have often noticed that being a devoted wife saps the intellect,” murmured Tommy.
            “And where have you noticed that?” demanded Tuppence.
            “Not from you, Tuppence.  Your devotion has never reached those lengths.”
Character:  Tuppence and Tommy Beresford
Chapter/Story:  4
Book Title/Copyright:  N or M?, 1941

Subject:  Tranquility and Women
Quote:  “A very wise friend of mine in the Police Force said to me years ago:  ‘Hercule, my friend, if you would know tranquility, avoid women.’” 
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  3
Book Title/Copyright:  Evil Under the Sun, 1941

Subject:  Blame the woman
Quote:  Lady Tressilian had the old-fashioned characteristic of always blaming the woman and being indulgent towards the man in the case. 
Character:  Omniscient narrator
Chapter/Story:  “Open the Door and Here Are the People”
Book Title/Copyright:  Towards Zero, 1944 

Subject:  Women and Pride
Quote:  It has been my experience…that women possess little or no pride where love affairs are concerned.  Pride is a quality often on their lips, but not apparent in their actions.”
Character:  Mr. Treves
Chapter/Story:  “Snow White and Rose Red—VI”
Book Title/Copyright:  Towards Zero, 1944 

Subject:  English Womanhood
Quote:  Dagmar Ferrier represented the popular ideal of English womanhood.
            She was a devoted wife, a fond mother, she shared her husband’s love of country life.  She interested herself in just those aspects of public life which were generally felt to be proper spheres of womanly activity.  She dressed well, but never in an ostentatiously fashionable manner.  She devoted much of her time and activity to large-scale charities, she had inaugurated special schemes for the relief of the wives of unemployed men.  She was looked up to by the whole nation and was a most valuable asset to the party.
Character:  Omniscient Narrator
Chapter/Story:  “The Augean Stables”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Labors of Hercules, 1947

Subject:  Women
Quote:  “That she can reform a rake…has always been one of woman’s dearest illusions!”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  “The Capture of Cerberus”
Book Title/Copyright:  The Labors of Hercules, 1947

Subject:  Housewives
Quote:  Odd if it’s really that newspaper character “the housewife” who has come into her own through war conditions.  The women who, hindered by innumerable “shall nots,” were not helped by any definite “shalls.”  Women who had to plan and think and improvise, who had to use every inch of the ingenuity they had been given, and to develop an ingenuity that they didn’t know they had got!  They alone…could stand upright without a crutch, responsible for themselves and others.
Character:  Lynn Marchmont
Chapter/Story:  Book One—13
Book Title/Copyright:  There is a Tide, 1948

Subject:  Women 
Quote:  “Women have a much worse time of it in the world than men do.  They’re more vulnerable.  They have children, and they mind—terribly—about their children.  As soon as they lose their looks, the men they love don’t love them any more.  They’re betrayed and deserted and pushed aside.  I don’t blame men.  I’d be the same myself…. It’s a cruel world!  Sooner or later it will be cruel to me!”
Character:  Gina Hudd
Chapter/Story:  16—3
Book Title/Copyright:  Murder With Mirrors (They Do It With Mirrors), 1952

Subject:  Nature’s Way
Quote:  “What a wonderful dispensation it is of Nature’s…that every man, however superficially unattractive, should be some woman’s choice.”
Character:  M. Hercule Poirot
Chapter/Story:  6
Book Title/Copyright:  Mrs. McGinty’s Dead, 1952

Subject:  Women and Men 
Quote:  What any woman saw in some particular man was beyond the comprehension of the average intelligent male…. A woman who could be intelligent about everything else in the world could be a complete fool when it came to some particular man…. And that had its dangers in more ways than one.
Character:  Mr. Entwhistle
Chapter/Story:  5—iv
Book Title/Copyright:  Funerals Are Fatal, 1953

Subject:  Women and Make-up
Quote:  In his experience, women suffering from violent grief and anxiety did not neglect their make-up.  Aware of the ravages grief made in their appearance, they did their best to repair those ravages.
Character:  Mr. Jessop
Chapter/Story:  1
Book Title/Copyright:  So Many Steps to Death, 1954

Subject:  Women and Happiness
Quote:  “Given that you have all you ask for, what can one not achieve?”
            “Happiness?” asked Hilary.
            He flashed her a quick smile…. “Ah, you are a woman, Madame.  It is women who ask always for happiness.”
            “And seldom get it?” asked Hilary.
            He shrugged his shoulders.
            “That may be.”
Character:  Dr. Louis Barron and Hilary Craven
Chapter/Story:  9
Book Title/Copyright:  So Many Steps to Death, 1954

Subject:  Elderly Ladies
Quote:  “He [my godfather] told me never to despise the”—Dermot Craddock paused for a moment to seek for a synonym for “old pussies’’—“er—elderly ladies.  He said they could usually tell you what might have happened, what ought to have happened and even what actually did happen!  And, he said, they can tell you why it happened!”
Character:  Detective Inspector Dermot Craddock
Chapter/Story:  16
Book Title/Copyright:  What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw! [4:50 From Paddington], 1957

Subject:  Women and Money
Quote:  “Women have a lot of sense, you know, when it comes to money matters.  Not high finance, of course,  No woman can hope to understand that, my dear father said.  But every day matters….”
Character:  Miss Jane Marple
Chapter/Story:  26
Book Title/Copyright:  What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw! [4:50 From Paddington], 1957