Quotation of the Week: Angela Thirkell on the Greeks

August Folly angela thirkell 21219550It’s a new segment:  Quotation of the Week!

Why?  Because it’s easier to post a quote than actually write about a book.

I just reread Angela Thirkell’s hilarious novel, August Folly, a hectic comedy in which a bossy village matriarch is directing a summer production of Hippolytus in her barn.  Mrs. Palmer corrals friends, neighbors, relatives, servants, and station-masters to act, sew costumes, and train the chorus. I burst out laughing when her neighbor Mr. Tebben learns that, thank God, he will not have to play Theseus.  Here is his quirky response.

“I am relieved to hear about Theseus.  Nothing would have induced me to act, but I had no wish to argue with Mrs. Palmer.  Greek plays!  I have always felt that the Greeks were easily amused.  A stone seat under a burning sun, with a bitter wind that so often accompanies it, four or five people in preposterous boots and masks, plays with whose plots everyone had been familiar with from childhood, and there they would sit for days and days.  Now the Vikings…”

Very, very funny.

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