Celebrating 30 Years of OUTLANDER!

Happy World OUTLANDER Day, everyone! For those of you who don't know, for the past few years, OUTLANDER fans worldwide have celebrated June 1st as the anniversary of OUTLANDER's publication in 1991, using the hashtag #WorldOutlanderDay on Twitter.

Congratulations to Diana Gabaldon on OUTLANDER's thirtieth anniversary! That's quite a milestone, don't you think?  In honor of the occasion, here's a selection of 30 of my favorite "quick quotes" from Diana Gabaldon's books and stories. 

*** SPOILER WARNING!! ***

If you haven't read all of Diana Gabaldon's books, you will find SPOILERS below! Read at your own risk.

OUTLANDER

1) He lifted me to my feet then, and bent his head to kiss me. It went on a long while, and his hands roamed downward, finding the fastening of my petticoat. It fell to the floor in a billow of starched flounces, leaving me in my chemise.

“Where did you learn to kiss like that?” I said, a little breathless. He grinned and pulled me close again.

“I said I was a virgin, not a monk,” he said, kissing me again. “If I find I need guidance, I’ll ask.”

(From OUTLANDER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 15, "Revelations of the Bridal Chamber". Copyright© 1991 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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2) “And if your life is a suitable exchange for my honor, tell me why my honor is not a suitable exchange for your life?” The brows drew together in a scowl, the twin of the one adorning her brother’s face. “Or are you telling me that I may not love you as much as you love me? Because if ye are, Jamie Fraser, I’ll tell ye right now, it’s not true!”

(From OUTLANDER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 26, "The Laird's Return". Copyright© 1991 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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3) “You asked me, Captain, if I were a witch,” I said, my voice low and steady. “I’ll answer you now. Witch I am. Witch, and I curse you. You will marry, Captain, and your wife will bear a child, but you shall not live to see your firstborn. I curse you with knowledge, Jack Randall—I give you the hour of your death.”

(From OUTLANDER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 35, "Wentworth Prison". Copyright© 1991 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



DRAGONFLY IN AMBER

4) “Claire,” he whispered. “Please. Let me give ye comfort.”

“Comfort?” I said. “And how will you do that? Can you give me back my child?”

He sank to his knees before me, but I kept my head down, staring into my upturned hands, laid empty on my lap. I felt his movement as he reached to touch me, hesitated, drew back, reached again.

“No,” he said, his voice scarcely audible.

“No, I canna do that. But…with the grace of God…I might give ye another?”

(From DRAGONFLY IN AMBER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 28, "The Coming of the Light". Copyright© 1992 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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5) “Jamie!” I exclaimed furiously, mouth freed at last. “This is unconscionable! How could you do such a thing? You--you--”

“Poltroon,” he supplied helpfully. “Or jackal, if ye like that better. What d’ye say, Murtagh,” turning to his lieutenant, “am I a poltroon or a jackal?”

Murtagh’s seam of a mouth twisted sourly. “I’d say ye’re dogsmeat, if you untie yon lass wi’out a dirk in yer hand.”

(From DRAGONFLY IN AMBER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 36, "Prestonpans". Copyright© 1992 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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6) “I will find you,” he whispered in my ear. “I promise. If I must endure two hundred years of purgatory, two hundred years without you--then that is my punishment, which I have earned for my crimes. For I have lied, and killed, and stolen; betrayed and broken trust. But there is the one thing that shall lie in the balance. When I shall stand before God, I shall have one thing to say, to weigh against the rest.”

His voice dropped, nearly to a whisper, and his arms tightened around me.

“Lord, ye gave me a rare woman, and God! I loved her well.”

(From DRAGONFLY IN AMBER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 46, "Timor Mortis Conturbat Me". Copyright© 1992 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



VOYAGER

7) I shook so that it was some time before I realized that he was shaking, too, and for the same reason. I don’t know how long we sat there on the dusty floor, crying in each other’s arms with the longing of twenty years spilling down our faces.

(From VOYAGER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 24, "A. Malcolm, Printer". Copyright© 1994 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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8) So she had done it. One fifteen-year-old girl, with nothing but stubbornness as a weapon. “I want him,” she had said. And kept saying it, through her mother’s objections and Jamie’s arguments, through Fergus’s scruples and her own fears, through three thousand miles of homesickness, hardship, ocean storm, and shipwreck.

(From VOYAGER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 52, "A Wedding Takes Place". Copyright© 1994 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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9) “Stop trying to change the subject. We were talking about your firmness.”

“Well, ye can just stop talking about it, because--” He broke off with a small yelp, as I made a fortunate grab with my left hand.

“Clumsy, am I?” I said, with considerable satisfaction. “Oh, my. Heavens, you do have a problem, don’t you?”

“Will ye leave go of me?” he hissed, looking frantically over his shoulder at the door. “Someone could come in any moment!”

“I told you you should have bolted the door,” I said, not letting go.

(From VOYAGER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 56, "Turtle Soup". Copyright© 1994 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



DRUMS OF AUTUMN

10) “So long as my body lives, and yours--we are one flesh,” he whispered. His fingers touched me, hair and chin and neck and breast, and I breathed his breath and felt him solid under my hand. Then I lay with my head on his shoulder, the strength of him supporting me, the words deep and soft in his chest.

“And when my body shall cease, my soul will still be yours. Claire--I swear by my hope of heaven, I will not be parted from you.”

(From DRUMS OF AUTUMN by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 16, "The First Law of Thermodynamics". Copyright© 1997 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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11) “My husband’s grandmother says that you have medicine now, but you will have more. When your hair is white like hers, that is when you will find your full power.”

(From DRUMS OF AUTUMN by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 20, "The White Raven". Copyright© 1997 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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12) [Jamie] stood as though rooted into the floor, fists clenched into his belly like a man gut-shot, trying to hold back the inevitable fatal spill of his insides.

I should be able to do something, to say something. I should be able to help them, to take care of them. But I could do nothing. I could not help one without betraying the other--had already betrayed them both. I had sold Jamie’s honor to keep him safe, and the doing of it had taken Roger and destroyed Bree’s happiness.

I could go to neither of them now. All I could do was to stand there, feeling my heart crumble into small, jagged chunks.

(From DRUMS OF AUTUMN by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 50, "In Which All is Revealed". Copyright© 1997 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



THE FIERY CROSS

13) “Oh, no, Father; it was a barrel churn. The sort that lies on its side, aye, with a wee handle to turn it? Well, it’s only that she was workin’ the churn with great vigor, and the laces of her bodice undone, so that her breasts wobbled to and fro, and the cloth clinging to her with the sweat of her work. Now, the churn was just the right height--and curved, aye?--so as make me think of bendin’ her across it and lifting her skirts, and--”

My mouth opened involuntarily in shock. That was my bodice he was describing, my breasts, and my butter churn! To say nothing of my skirts. I remembered that particular occasion quite vividly, and if it had started with an impure thought, it certainly hadn’t stopped there.

(From THE FIERY CROSS by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 13, "Beans and Barbecue". Copyright© 2001 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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14) “Oh, I ken how it is,” [Jocasta] assured him. “It’s only to be understood that a man might not feel just so kindly toward a bairn his wife’s borne to another. But if--” 

He stepped forward then and gripped her hard by the shoulder, startling her. She jerked, blinking, and the candle flames flashed from the cairngorm brooch.

“Madam,” he said, speaking very softly into her face. “I do not want your money. My wife does not want it. And my son will not have it. Cram it up your hole, aye?”

(From THE FIERY CROSS by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 11, "Pride". Copyright© 2001 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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15) “When the day shall come, that we do part,” he said softly, and turned to look at me, “if my last words are not ‘I love you’--ye’ll ken it was because I didna have time.”

(From THE FIERY CROSS by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 111, "And Yet Go Out to Meet It". Copyright© 2001 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



A BREATH OF SNOW AND ASHES

16) “I have lived through a fucking world war,” I said, my voice low and venomous. “I have lost a child. I have lost two husbands. I have starved with an army, been beaten and wounded, been patronized, betrayed, imprisoned, and attacked. And I have fucking survived!” My voice was rising, but I was helpless to stop it. “And now should I be shattered because some wretched, pathetic excuses for men stuck their nasty little appendages between my legs and wiggled them?!” I stood up, seized the edge of the washstand and heaved it over, sending everything flying with a crash--basin, ewer, and lighted candlestick, which promptly went out.

“Well, I won’t,” I said quite calmly.

(From A BREATH OF SNOW AND ASHES by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 29, "Perfectly Fine". Copyright© 2005 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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17) “I swear to ye, Bree,” he said. “Whatever I’m called to now--and God knows what that is--I was called to be your husband first. Your husband and the father of your bairns above all things--and that I always shall be. Whatever I may do, it will not ever be at the price of my family, I promise you.”

(From A BREATH OF SNOW AND ASHES by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 52, "M-I-C". Copyright© 2005 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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18)  “Can you fix it?” I heard the tremor in Brianna’s voice, and went at once to put my arms around her. Her head was bent over Amanda, and I saw the tears fall, one, then another, darkening the wispy curls on top of the baby’s head.

“No,” I whispered, holding them both. Despair washed over me, but I tightened my hold, as though I could keep time and blood both at bay. “No, I can’t.”

(From A BREATH OF SNOW AND ASHES by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 114, "Amanda". Copyright© 2005 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



AN ECHO IN THE BONE

19) "Would you care to explain to me which aspects of plant inspection require a penis?"

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 16, "Unarmed Conflict". Copyright© 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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20) I'm not dead. Wish I were. Bath is vile. I am daily wrapped in canvas and carried off like a parcel to be sunk in boiling water that smells of rotten eggs, then hauled out and forced to drink it, but Minnie says she will divorce me by petition in the House of Lords on the grounds of insanity caused by immoral acts if I don't submit. I doubt this, but here I am.

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 32, "A Flurry of Suspicion". Copyright© 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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21) “Have ye ever been in the slightest doubt that I need ye?” he demanded.

It took roughly half a second of thought to answer this.

“No,” I replied promptly. “To the best of my knowledge, you needed me urgently the moment I saw you. And I haven’t had reason to think you’ve got any more self-sufficient since."

(From AN ECHO IN THE BONE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 79, "The Cave". Copyright© 2009 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)



WRITTEN IN MY OWN HEART'S BLOOD

22) “I have loved ye since I saw you, Sassenach,” he said very quietly, holding my eyes with his own, bloodshot and lined with tiredness but very blue. “I will love ye forever. It doesna matter if ye sleep with the whole English army--well, no,” he corrected himself, “it would matter, but it wouldna stop me loving you.”

(From WRITTEN IN MY OWN HEART'S BLOOD by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 24, "Welcome Coolness in the Heat, Comfort in the Midst of Woe". Copyright© 2014 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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23) What was scaring him, though, was that the healer’s hands were blue.

No doubt about it. It wasn’t a trick of the light--there wasn’t any to speak of, bar the dull glow of the smoored fire. It wasn’t a huge thing; no fiery coruscations or neon. But a soft blue tinge had come up between the healer’s fingers, crept over the backs of his hands--and now spread in a faint haze around his hands, seeming to penetrate Buck’s chest.

(From WRITTEN IN MY OWN HEART'S BLOOD by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 37, "Cognosco Te". Copyright© 2014 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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24) “I think we can’t wait any longer to be married, Ian,” she said softly. “I will not have thee face such things alone. These are bad times, and we must be together.”

He closed his eyes and all the air went out of him. When he drew breath again, it tasted of peace.

(From WRITTEN IN MY OWN HEART'S BLOOD by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 92, "I Will Not Have Thee Be Alone". Copyright© 2014 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.) 



LORD JOHN AND THE PRIVATE MATTER


25) “You looked closely at the heelprint? Several of the nailheads had broken through the skin, and yet there was no blood extravasated.”

Tom gave him a look of mingled bewilderment and suspicion, obviously suspecting that Grey had made up the word upon the moment for the express purpose of tormenting him, but merely said, “Oh?”

(From LORD JOHN AND THE PRIVATE MATTER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 4, "A Valet Calls". Copyright© 2003 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)  

LORD JOHN AND THE BROTHERHOOD OF THE BLADE

26) “Dead is dead, Major,” he said quietly. “It is not a romantic notion. And whatever my own feelings in the matter, my family would not prefer my death to my dishonor. While there is anyone alive with a claim upon my protection, my life is not my own.”

(From LORD JOHN AND THE BROTHERHOOD OF THE BLADE by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 20, "Ye Jacobites By Name". Copyright© 2007 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)


27) Grey’s heart gave a sudden bump, pain stabbed him, and he stiffened. He felt as though his chest were transfixed by an iron rod, holding him immobile. Tried to breathe, but was stopped by the pain. Christ, was he going to die in public, in a pleasure garden, in the company of a sodomite spy dressed like a rooster? He could only hope that Tom was nearby, and would remove his body before anybody noticed.

(From "Lord John and the Haunted Soldier", in LORD JOHN AND THE HAND OF DEVILS by Diana Gabaldon. Copyright© 2007 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

THE SCOTTISH PRISONER

28) “I would not piss on him was he burning in the flames of hell,” Grey said politely.

One of Hal’s brows flicked upward, but only momentarily.

“Just so,” he said dryly. “The question, though, is whether Fraser might be inclined to perform a similar service for you.”

Grey placed his cup carefully in the center of the desk.

“Only if he thought I might drown,” he said, and went out.

(From THE SCOTTISH PRISONER by Diana Gabaldon, chapter 2, "Erse". Copyright© 2011 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

SEVEN STONES TO STAND OR FALL

29) “You’re right; they’re not all brave. Most of them--of us--we’re just…there, and we do our best. Most of the time,” he added, and the corner of his mouth lifted slightly, though she couldn’t tell whether it was in humor or bitterness.

(From "A Leaf on the Wind of All Hallows", in SEVEN STONES TO STAND OR FALL by Diana Gabaldon. Copyright© 2011 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)
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30) “What is the ultimate goal of an alchemist?” the frog said very seriously.

“To transform matter,” Rakoczy replied automatically.

The frog’s face split in a broad amphibian grin. “Exactly!” he said. And vanished.

He had vanished. No puffs of smoke, no illusionist’s tricks, no smell of sulfur--the frog was simply gone. The square stretched empty under the starlit sky; the only thing that moved was a cat that darted mewing out of the shadows and brushed past Rakoczy’s leg.

(From "The Space Between", in SEVEN STONES TO STAND OR FALL by Diana Gabaldon. Copyright© 2013 by Diana Gabaldon. All rights reserved.)

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I hope you've enjoyed this collection. And here's to many more years of OUTLANDER stories!

1 comment

Unknown said...

Wonderful collection of quotes Karen. Thanks so much for posting them. It’s lovely to reminisce the Outlander story, particularly on World Outlander Day and the 30th Anniversary.

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