Literary Birthday – 1 March – Lytton Strachey

Lytton Strachey was born 1 March 1880, and died 21 January 1932.

Eight Quotes

  1. A writer’s promise is like a tiger’s smile.
  2. There is something dark and wintry about the atmosphere of the later Middle Ages.
  3. As usual, it struck me that letters were the only really satisfactory form of literature. They give one the facts so amazingly, don’t they? I felt when I got to the end that I’d lived for years in that set. But oh dearie me I am glad that I’m not in it!
  4. It is probably always disastrous not to be a poet.
  5. For ignorance is the first requisite of the historian──ignorance, which simplifies and clarifies, which selects and omits, with a placid perfection that unattainable by the highest art.
  6. Discretion is not the better part of biography.
  7. There was hardly an eminent writer in Paris who was unacquainted with the inside of the Conciergerie or the Bastille.
  8. The amateur is very rare in French literature – as rare as he is common in our own.

Lytton Strachey was a British writer, critic and founding member of the Bloomsbury Group. His book, Eminent Victorians, established a new form of biography in which psychological insight and sympathy are combined with irreverence and wit. He was awarded the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Queen Victoria.

 by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 1st March 2015