Elizabeth Bowen

(1899_1973 / Dublin)

Elizabeth Bowen Quotes

  • ''Religion engaged her feelings in the hard grapple she knew as love.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), Irish author; born in Ireland. Bowen's Court, ch. 8 (1942). Of Eliza Galwey Bowen, wife of her nineteenth-century forbear, Robert Bowen.
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  • ''...the power-loving temperament is more dangerous when it either prefers or is forced to operate in what is materially a void. We have everything to dread from the dispossessed.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), Irish author; born in Ireland. Bowen's Court, afterword (1942).
  • ''Education is not so important as people think.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), Irish author; born in Ireland. Bowen's Court, ch. 5 (1942).
  • ''I became, and remain, my characters' close and intent watcher: their director, never. Their creator I cannot feel that I was, or am.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Pictures and Conversations, ch. 1 (1975).
  • ''Nothing can happen nowhere. The locale of the happening always colours the happening, and often, to a degree, shapes it.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Pictures and Conversations, ch. 1 (1975).
  • ''Art is for [the Irish] inseparable from artifice: of that, the theatre is the home. Possibly, it was England made me a novelist.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Pictures and Conversations, ch. 1 (1975).
  • ''... it appears to me that problems, inherent in any writing, loom unduly large when one looks ahead. Though nothing is easy, little is quite impossible.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, story writer, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Seven Winters, part 2, sect. 2, ch. 8 (1962). From the preface to the 1952 reprint of The Last September, which was first published in 1929.
  • ''[My early stories] are the work of a living writer whom I know in a sense, but can never meet.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, story writer, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Seven Winters, part 2, sect. 2, ch. 8 (1962). From preface to the 1951 reprint of Ann Lee's, her second story collection.
  • ''We visualized her less as a woman at work than as a light widening as it brightened.''
    Elizabeth Bowen (1899-1973), British novelist, story writer, essayist, and memoirist; born in Ireland. Seven Winters, part 2, sect. 2, ch. 2 (1962). On her generation's admiration of the original, greatly gifted British novelist, Virginia Woolf (1882-1941).

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