Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas quotes

Here are some Christmas-themed quotes from the OUTLANDER books.

1) It's hard to imagine, from our 21st-century perspective, anyone losing track of the date this close to Christmas. But Roger had a lot of other things on his mind....

"What's the occasion? For our homecoming?"
She lifted her head from his chest and gave him what he privately classified as A Look.
"For Christmas," she said.
"What?" He groped blankly, trying to count the days, but the events of the last three weeks had completely erased his mental calendar. "When?"
"Tomorrow, idiot," she said with exaggerated patience.

(From The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 33 ("Home for Christmas"). Copyright© 2001 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

2) Here's a quote from one of my favorite scenes in DRUMS, when Claire comes to find Jamie in the snow:

"What if I tell you a story, instead?"
Highlanders loved stories, and Jamie was no exception.
"Oh, aye," he said, sounding much happier. "What sort of story is it?"
"A Christmas story," I said, settling myself along the curve of his body. "About a miser named Ebenezer Scrooge."
"An Englishman, I daresay?"
"Yes," I said. "Be quiet and listen."
I could see my own breath as I talked, white in the dim, cold air. The snow was falling heavily outside our shelter; when I paused in the story, I could hear the whisper of flakes against the hemlock branches, and the far-off whine of wind in the trees.

(From Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 21 ("Night on a Snowy Mountain"). Copyright© 1997 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

3) I think it's interesting--and rather sad--that Lord John should seek out Nessie, rather than the company of his own family, on Christmas Eve:

“Aye, well, it is Christmas Eve,” she said, answering his unasked question. “Any man wi’ a home to go to’s in it.” She yawned, pulled off her nightcap, and fluffed her fingers through the wild mass of curly dark hair.
“Yet you seem to have some custom,” he observed. Distant singing came from two floors below, and the parlor had seemed well populated when he passed.
“Och, aye. The desperate ones. I leave them to Maybelle to deal with; dinna like to see them, poor creatures. Pitiful. They dinna really want a woman, the ones who come on Christmas Eve--only a fire to sit by, and folk to sit with.”

(From An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 24 ("Joyeux Noel"). Copyright© 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

4) The next quote is a reminder that Christmas was viewed differently back then than we think of it today. But of course many of today's Christmas traditions date from the 19th century or later:

Catholic as many of them were--and nominally Christian as they all were--Highland Scots regarded Christmas primarily as a religious observance, rather than a major festive occasion. Lacking priest or minister, the day was spent much like a Sunday, though with a particularly lavish meal to mark the occasion, and the exchange of small gifts.

(From The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 34 ("Charms"). Copyright© 2001 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

5) I love this quote, even though things didn't turn out the way Roger had expected:

She'd wanted to go to the Christmas Eve services. After that...
After that, he would ask her, make it formal. She would say yes, he knew. And then...
Why, then, they would come home, to a house dark and private. With themselves alone, on a night of sacrament and secret, with love newly come into the world. And he would lift her in his arms and carry her upstairs, on a night when virginity's sacrifice was no loss of purity, but rather the birth of everlasting joy.

(From Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 17 ("Home for the Holidays"). Copyright© 1997 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

Wishing all of you the best in this holiday season!

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for those lovely reminders.

Karen Henry said...

You're welcome! :-)

And a BIG thank you to whoever posted the link to my blog on the OUTLANDER fan page on Facebook today. I noticed the spike in traffic right away, and I appreciate it very much.

If you're just seeing my site for the first time today as a result of that post on FB, welcome!

Karen

Anonymous said...

Outlander memories... MMMM! Thanks for the quotes. Merry Christmas Outlanders!

Cindy G said...

Thanks for the nice compilation of Christmas memories from Diana's books! You do such a wonderful job both here & on Compuserve (I'm just a lurker there, but I enjoy reading the posts immensely.) I'm also on Ladies of Lallybroch often & your posts there are very appreciated! Merry Christmas!

Evelyn said...

Karen
Thank you for these wonderful reminders. I have always been fond of the scene in Drums where Claire tells Jamie "A Christmas Carole". Telling someone a story or reading to someone from a book is such a loving and intimate thing to do,it further expresses the love between those two.

苦瓜鹹蛋Star said...
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