Black Beauty in quotes


„This was a little joke of John’s; he used to say that a regular course of the Birtwick horse-balls would cure almost any vicious horse; these balls, he said, were made up of patience and gentleness, firmness and petting, one pound of each to be mixed up with half-a-pint of common sense, and given to the horse every day.”

„Now look, for instance, at the way they serve dogs, cutting off their tails to make them look plucky, and shearing up their pretty little ears to a point to make them look sharp, forsooth. I had a dear friend, once, a brown terrier; ‘Skye’ they called her, she was so fond of me that she never would sleep out of my stall; she made her bed under the manger, and there she had a litter of five as pretty little puppies as need be; none were drowned, for they were a valuable kind, and how pleased she was with them! and when they got their eyes open and crawled about, it was a real pretty sight; but one day the man came and took them all away.
„I thought he might be afraid I should tread upon them. But it was no so; in the evening poor Skye brought them back again, one by one in her mouth; not the happy little things that they were, but bleeding and crying pitifully; they had all a piece of their tails cut off, and the soft flap of their pretty little years was cut quite off.
How their mother licked them, and how troubled she was, poor thing! I never forgot it. They healed in time, and they forgot the pain, but the nice soft flap that of course was intended to protect the delicate part of their ears from dust and injury was gone for ever.
„Why don’t they cut their own children’s ears into points to make them look sharp? why don’t they cut the end of their noses to make them look plucky? one would be just as sensible as the other. What rigth have they to torment and disfigure God’s creatures?”(Sir Oliver)

„Bad words were made for bad things.”

„I would say,” said Ginger, curling her nostrils, „that these men, who are so wise, had better give orders, that in future all foals should be born with their eyes set just in the middle of their foreheads, instead of on the side; they always think they can improve upon nature and mend what God has made.”

„There is no religion without love, and people may talk as much as they like about their religion, but if it does not teach them to be good and king to man and beast, it is all a sham – all a sham.”

„They(nr: horses) are like children, train ‘em up in the way they should go, as the book says, and when they are old they will not depart from it, if they have a chance, that is.”

„Only ignorance! only ignorance! how can you talk about ignorance? Don’t you know that it is the worst thing in the world, next to wickedness? – and which does the most mischief heaven only knows. If people can say, ‘Oh! I did not know, I did not mean any harm,’ they think it is all right.”

„He said that spoiling a horse, and letting him get into bad habits, was just as cruel and spoiling a child, and both had to suffer for it afterwards.”

„If you in the morning
Throw minutes away,
You can’t pick them up
In the course of the day.
You may hurry and scurry,
And flurry and worry,
You’ve lost them for ever,
For ever and aye.”

„When a good driver and a good horse, who understand each other, are of one mind, it is wonderful what they can do.”

„I have heard the Commandments read a great many times, and I never noticed that any of them said ‘Thou shalt be rich’; and there are a good many curious things said in the New Testament about rich men that I think would make me feel rather queer if I was one of them.”

„God made men, and He made horses and all the other beasts, and as soon as He had made them, He made a day of rest, and bade that all should rest one day in seven; and I think, sir, He must have known what was good for them, and I am sure it is good for me.”

„My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.”

„My boy, Liberty does not come from colours; they only show party, and all liberty you can get out of them is, liberty to get drunk at other people’s expense, liberty to ride in the poll in a dirty old cab, liberty to abuse anyone that does not wear your colour, and to shout yourself hoarse at what you half understand – that’s your liberty!”

„We have no right to distress any of God’s creatures without a very good reason; we call them dumb animals, and so they are, for they cannot tell us how they feel, but they do not suffer less because they have no words.”

„I have heard men say that seeing is believing; but I should say that feeling is believing.”

Anna Sewell


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