Places Quotes

Ask where’s the North? At York tis on the Tweed; In Scotland at the Orcades; and there, At Greenland, Zembla, or the Lord knows where.

In the Valley of the Kings, every sarcophagus is broken and the bones of the kings of Egypt are scattered. In one I picked up a skull. I mused over it a moment, and handed it to Paul, who moralized at large. ‘That man,’ said he, ‘once talked and laughed and sang and danced, and […]

I fear the Greeks even when they bring gifts.

What a bewitching thing is a city of the sea. It was good to be in Seattle – to hear the foghorns on the Sound, and the deep bellow of departing steamers; to feel the creeping fog all around you, the fog that softens things and makes a velvet trance out of nighttime.

Chicago is stupefying… an Olympian freak, a fable, an allegory, an incomprehensible phenomenon… monstrous, multifarous, unnatural, indomitable, puissant, preposterous, transcendent… throw the dictionary at it!

Men hang out their signs indicative of their respective trades: shoemakers hang out a gigantic shoe; jewelers, a monster watch; and the dentist hangs out a gold tooth; but up in the mountains of New Hampshire, God Almighty has hung out a sign to show that there He makes men.

If the continent were water and the water land, Key West is where all the sweetness and bitterness, all the honey and sour acids of our complicated American lives would drain. The southernmost point in the United States. Land’s end. Old glory and present decay.

In Vineyard Haven, on Martha’s Vineyard, mostly I love the soft collision here of harbor and shore, the subtly haunting briny quality that all small towns have when they are situated on the sea.

In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, bloodshed they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, five hundred years of democracy and peace and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.

Las Vegas is a man-made paradise, the fallen Adam in the arms of a neon serpent. This is Playland as Eden, essentially infantile, but it entrances many bored people, including lot of foreigners.