Blonde hair. Blonde teeth. Blonde life.
— Jane Fonda
Nothing that he had so far seen of India had prepared him for the sight of Anjuli… A long-limbed goddess — Venus, Aphrodite — whose skin was paler than ripe wheat, and whose beautiful black-lashed eyes were the colour of peat-water on the moors of Kerry.
— MM Kaye. The Far Pavilions
Did my heart live ’til now? For swear at sight,
I never saw true beauty ’til this night.
— William Shakespear. Romeo and Juliet
O slender as a willow-wand! O clearer than clear water!
O reed by the living pool! Fair river daughter!
O spring-time and summer-time, and spring again after!
O wind on the waterfall, and the leaves’ laughter!
— JRR Tolkien. The Fellowship of the Ring
Eyes too expressive to be blue,
Too lovely to be grey.
— Matthew Arnold. Faded Leaves
Was this the face that launched a thousand ships,
And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?
Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss!
Her lips suck forth my soul: see, where it flies!
Come, Helen, come give me my soul again.
Here will I dwell, for Heaven be in these lips,
And all is dross that is not Helen…
O, thou art fairer than the evening air
Clad in the beauty of a thousand stars;
Brighter art thou than flaming Jupiter
When he appear’d to hapless Semele;
More lovely than the monarch of the sky
In wanton Arethusa’s azur’d arms…
— from Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus
The gooks use greenish-blue tracers. I swear to God they’re lovely coming up at you.
— Helicopter pilot, US Army, during the Vietnam War.
“There is sadness in beauty,” he recalled his father telling him as a child. “When you can understand that, you will no longer be a boy.”
— Eric Van Lustbader. Jian
She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies,
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meets in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellow’d to that tender light
Which Heaven to gaudy day denies.
— Lord Byron. She Walks in Beauty
It was the Rainbow gave thee birth,
And left thee all her lovely hues;
And, as her mother’s name was Tears,
So runs it in my blood to choose
For haunts the lonely pools, and keep
In company with trees that weep.
Go you and, with such glorious hues,
Live with proud peacocks in green parks;
On lawns as smooth as shining glass,
Let every feather show its marks;
Get thee on boughs and clap thy wings
Before the windows of proud kings.
— from WH Davies’ The Kingfisher
Beauty crowns me till I die…
— Emily Dickinson. The One Hound
I am Myra Breckenridge whom no man will ever possess. Clad only in garter belt and one dress shield, I hold off the entire elite of Trobriand Islanders, a race who possess no words for for “why” or “because”. Wielding a stone axe, I broke the arms, the limbs, the balls of their finest warriors, my beauty blinding them, as it does all men, unmanning them in the way that King Kong was reduced to a mere simian whimper by beauteous Fay Wray whom I resemble left three-quarter profile if the key light is no more than five feet high during the close shot.
— Gore Vidal. Myra Breckenridge
I still remember the effect I produced on a small group of Galla tribesmen massed around a man in black clothes. I dropped an aerial torpedo right in the centre, and the group opened up like a flowering rose. It was most entertaining.
— Vittorio Mussolini, in an account of his Ethiopian fighting.