Like scenes of horror reeled through a jerky projector the mad orgy staggered to its awful end.
They brought an alienist to examine me and he said that I was not insane but that I was probably a dangerous degenerate.
– John H. Knox
Why has the ha-cha generation of blue bloods joined the brownstone tradition? Can it be that behind those venerable portals there is a stimulus for those jaded appetites, a pleasure so exhaustive that its ending leaves nothing but self-loathing and desire for death?
– Edith and Ejler Jacobson
The first light of the morning shone full upon the portrait, and, as I lay awake, my eyes continued to dwell upon it with growing complacency; its beauty crept about my heart insidiously, silencing my scruples one after another; and while I knew that to love such a woman was to sign and seal one’s own sentence of degeneration, I still knew that, if she were alive, I should love her.
The pale saint of my dreams had vanished for ever; and in her place I beheld this maiden on whom God had lavished the richest colors and the most exuberant energies of life, whom He had made active as a deer, slender as a reed, and in whose great eyes He had lighted the torches of the soul.
I drew near her as the giddy man drawn near the margin of a gulf.
– Robert Louis Stevenson
Barbara at this time was a good and pretty girl, who never spoke ill of any one, and hated other pretty women the very least possible.
– Thomas Hardy
Beauty! Why, that woman will be beautiful when she is a skeleton, was the thought that flashed into my mind. She was very tall, and so thin that her skin seemed faintly luminous, as if an inward light pierced the transparent substance. It was the beauty, not of earth, but of triumphant spirit.
– Ellen Glasgow
It was kicks and you did it until the kicks stopped.
– Megan Abbott