John Galsworthy

The Forsythe Saga - Man Of Property

Classic novel. “Being the experiences of Mr. John Lavender in the Time of War”. According to Wikipedia: «John Galsworthy ( 1867— 1933) was an English novelist and playwright. Notable works include The Forsyte Saga (1906–1921) and its sequels, A Modern Comedy and End of the Chapter. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1932.
387 printed pages
Original publication
Publication year
Seltzer Books
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  • Anastasiia Kuznietsovashared an impression2 years ago
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  • Anastasiia Kuznietsovahas quotedlast year
    Then arrived in a group a number of Nicholases, always punctual—the fashion up Ladbroke Grove way; and close behind them Eustace and his men, gloomy and smelling rather of smoke.

    Three or four of Francie’s lovers now appeared, one after the other; she had made each promise to come early. They were all clean-shaven and sprightly, with that peculiar kind of young-man sprightliness which had recently invaded Kensington; they did not seem to mind each other’s presence in the least, and wore their ties bunching out at the ends, white waistcoats, and socks with clocks. All had handkerchiefs concealed in their cuffs. They moved buoyantly, each armoured in professional gaiety, as though he had come to do great deeds. Their faces when they danced, far from wearing the traditional solemn look of the dancing Englishman, were irresponsible, charming, suave; they bounded, twirling their partners at great pace, without pedantic attention to the rhythm of the music.

    At other dancers they looked with a kind of airy scorn—they, the light brigade, the heroes of a hundred Kensington “hops”—from whom alone could the right manner and smile and step be hoped.

    After this the stream came fast; chaperones silting up along the wall facing the entrance, the volatile element swelling the eddy in the larger room.

    Men were scarce, and wallflowers wore their peculiar, pathetic expression, a patient, sourish smile which seemed to say: “Oh, no! don’t mistake me, I know you are not coming up to me. I can hardly expect that!” And Francie would plead with one of her lovers, or with some callow youth: “Now, to please me, do let me introduce you to Miss Pink; such a nice girl, really!” and she would bring him up, and say: “Miss Pink—Mr. Gathercole. Can you spare him a dance?” Then Miss Pink, smiling her forced smile, colouring a little, answered: “Oh! I think so!” and screening her empty card, wrote on it the name of Gathercole, spelling it passionately in the district that he proposed, about the second extra.

    But when the youth had murmured that it was hot, and passed, she relapsed into her attitude of hopeless expectation, into her patient, sourish smile.

    Mothers, slowly fanning their faces, watched their daughters, and in their eyes could be read all the story of those daughters’ fortunes. As for themselves, to sit hour after hour, dead tired, silent, or talking spasmodically—what did it matter, so long as the girls were having a good time! But to see them neglected and passed by! Ah! they smiled, but their eyes stabbed like the eyes of an offended swan; they longed to pluck young Gathercole by the slack of his dandified breeches, and drag him to their daughters—the jackanapes!
  • Anastasiia Kuznietsovahas quotedlast year
    And all the cruelties and hardness of life, its pathos and unequal chances, its conceit, self-forgetfulness, and patience, were presented on the battle-field of this Kensington ball-room.

    Here and there, too, lovers—not lovers like Francie’s, a peculiar breed, but simply lovers—trembling, blushing, silent, sought each other by flying glances, sought to meet and touch in the mazes of the dance, and now and again dancing together, struck some beholder by the light in their eyes.

    Not a second before ten o’clock came the Jameses—Emily, Rachel, Winifred (Dartie had been left behind, having on a former occasion drunk too much of Roger’s champagne), and Cicely, the youngest, making her debut; behind them, following in a hansom from the paternal mansion where they had dined, Soames and Irene.

    All these ladies had shoulder-straps and no tulle—thus showing at once, by a bolder exposure of flesh, that they came from the more fashionable side of the Park.
  • Anastasiia Kuznietsovahas quotedlast year
    He saw a rounded chin nestling in a cream ruffle, a delicate face with large dark eyes and soft lips. A black “picture” hat concealed the hair; her figure was lightly poised against the back of the bench, her knees were crossed; the tip of a patent-leather shoe emerged beneath her skirt. There was something, indeed, inexpressibly dainty about the person of this lady, but young Jolyon’s attention was chiefly riveted by the look on her face, which reminded him of his wife. It was as though its owner had come into contact with forces too strong for her. It troubled him, arousing vague feelings of attraction and chivalry. Who was she? And what doing there, alone?

    Two young gentlemen of that peculiar breed, at once forward and shy, found in the Regent’s Park, came by on their way to lawn tennis, and he noted with disapproval their furtive stares of admiration. A loitering gardener halted to do something unnecessary to a clump of pampas grass; he, too, wanted an excuse for peeping. A gentleman, old, and, by his hat, a professor of horticulture, passed three times to scrutinize her long and stealthily, a queer expression about his lips.

    With all these men young Jolyon felt the same vague irritation. She looked at none of them, yet was he certain that every man who passed would look at her like that.

    Her face was not the face of a sorceress, who in every look holds out to men the offer of pleasure; it had none of the “devil’s beauty” so highly prized among the first Forsytes of the land; neither was it of that type, no less adorable, associated with the box of chocolate; it was not of the spiritually passionate, or passionately spiritual order, peculiar to house-decoration and modern poetry; nor did it seem to promise to the playwright material for the production of the interesting and neurasthenic figure, who commits suicide in the last act.

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