Wednesday, February 6, 2013


"Epigrammatic," said the King, shaking his finger sadly at him. "None of your daring scintillations here. As to why I don't do it in private, I rather fail to understand your question. The answer is of comparative limpidity. I don't do it in private, because it is funnier to do it in public. You appear to think that it would be amusing to be dignified in the banquet hall and in the street, and at my own fireside (I could procure a fireside) to keep the company in a roar. But that is what every one does. Every one is grave in public, and funny in private. My sense of humour suggests the reversal of this; it suggests that one should be funny in public, and solemn in private. I desire to make the State functions, parliaments, coronations, and so on, one roaring old-fashioned pantomime. But, on the other hand, I shut myself up alone in a small store-room for two hours a day, where I am so dignified that I come out quite ill."

Excerpt from: Gilbert K. Chesterton, The Napoleon of Notting Hill, London and New York, John Lane – The Bodley Head, 1904.
Pablo Picasso Images:   
Upper – Clown (1958);   
Lower – Arlequin sur un canapĂ© rouge (1905).

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