The Hunchback of Notre-Dame

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Oh, why am I not of stone, like you?

The Hunchback of Notre Dame (French: Notre-Dame de Paris, "Notre-Dame of Paris") is a novel set in 1482 in and around the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, first published in 1831 by the prolific French author Victor Hugo.


  • If it could be granted to us, the men of 1830, to mingle in thought with those Parisians of the fifteenth century, and to enter with them, jostled, elbowed, pulled about, into that immense hall of the palace, which was so cramped on that sixth of January, 1482, the spectacle would not be devoid of either interest or charm, and we should have about us only things that were so old that they would seem new.
    • Book 1
  • The church of Notre-Dame de Paris is still no doubt, a majestic and sublime edifice. But, beautiful as it has been preserved in growing old, it is difficult not to sigh, not to wax indignant, before the numberless degradations and mutilations which time and men have both caused the venerable monument to suffer, without respect for Charlemagne, who laid its first stone, or for Philip Augustus, who laid the last.
    On the face of this aged queen of our cathedrals, by the side of a wrinkle, one always finds a scar. Tempus edax, homo edacior; which I should be glad to translate thus: time is blind, man is stupid.
    • Book 3, Ch. 1 : Notre-Dame
  • Oh! que ne suis-je de pierre comme toi!
    • Oh, why am I not of stone, like you?
    • Book 9, Ch. 4
  • Quand on voulut le détacher du squelette qu'il embrassait, il tomba en poussière.
    • When they tried to detach this skeleton from the one it embraced, it crumbled to dust.
    • Book 11, Ch. 4

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