Love in the Time of Cholera

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Love in the Time of Cholera (El amor en los tiempos del cólera, 1985) is a novel by Gabriel García Márquez about a fifty-year love triangle between Fermina Daza, Florentino Ariza and Doctor Juvenal Urbino set in the late 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century (roughly 1880 to 1930). The novel, a picturesque tale of unrequited love, which is written in Márquez's trademark form of magical realism, deeply explores the idea that suffering for love is a kind of nobility.



from Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Love in the time of Cholera, First Vintage International Edition, United States, 2003, ISBN 978-0-307-38714-1

  • The lesson was not interrupted, but the girl raised her eyes to see who was passing by the window, and that casual glance was the beginning of a cataclysm of love that still had not ended half a century later.
    • page 55
  • "Shoot me, There is no greater glory than to die for love."
    • Florentino Ariza page 82
  • To him she seemed so beautiful, so seductive, so different from ordinary people, that he could not understand why no one was as disturbed as he by the clicking of her heels on the paving stones, why no one else's heart was wild with the breeze stirred by the sighs of her veils, why everyone did not go mad with the movements of her braid, the flight of her hands, the gold of her laughter. He had not missed a single one of her gestures, not one of the indications of her character, but he did not dare approach her for fear of destroying the spell.
    • page 100
  • He liked to say that this love was the result of a clinical error.
    • page 105
  • "Save that powder for when the liberals come"
    • Doctor Juvenal Urbino page 115
  • He repeated until his dying day that there was no one with more common sense, no stonecutter more obstinate, no manager more lucid or dangerous, than a poet.
  • "I adore you because you made me a whore"
    • The Widow Nazaret page 151
  • "No, not rich. I am a poor man with money, which is not the same thing."
    • Don Leo XII Loayza page 167
  • ...but the project met the same fate as the previous one after Ausencia Santander sent him tumbling with her old dog's wisdom, stood him on his head, tossed him up and threw him down, made him as good as new, shattered all his virtuous theories, and taught him the only thing he had to learn about love: that nobody teaches life anything.
    • page 176
  • She discovered with great delight that one does not love one's children just because they are one's children but because of the friendship formed while raising them.
  • He allowed himself to be swayed by his conviction that human beings are not born once and for all on the day their mothers give birth to them, but that life obliges them over and over again to give birth to themselves.
  • Together they had overcome the daily incomprehension, the instantaneous hatred, the reciprocal nastiness, and fabulous flashes of glory in the conjugal conspiracy. It was time when they both loved each other best, without hurry or excess, when both were most conscious of and grateful for their incredible victories over adversity. Life would still present them with other moral trials, of course, but that no longer mattered: they were on the other shore.
  • A man knows when he is growing old because he begins to look like his father.
  • We men are the miserable slaves of prejudice
    • Doctor Juvenal Urbino
  • Florentina Ariza had kept his answer ready for fifty-three years, seven months and eleven days and nights. 'Forever,' he said.
  • Think of love as a state of grace: not the means to anything but the alpha and omega, an end in itself.
  • “He was still too young to know that the heart's memory eliminates the bad and magnifies the good, and that thanks to this artifice we manage to endure the burden of the past.”

See also

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