Heart of Darkness: Top Ten Quotes

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  1.   "And this also," said Marlow suddenly, "has been one of the dark places of the  earth." (p. 5)
    Marlow delivers this comment about England just before he begins his tale about his adventures in the Congo. 
  2. "The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it too much." (p. 7)
    Marlow offers this comment as a preface to his main tale. 
  3. "'Each station should be like a beacon on the road toward better things, a center for trade of course but also for humanising, improving, instructing.'" (p. 32)
    The Central Station Manager recalls this statement, made by Kurtz, to Marlow. 
  4. "All Europe contributed to the making of Kurtz, and by and by I learned that most appropriately the International Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs had entrusted him with the making of a report for its future guidance." (p.49)
    Marlow makes this comment about Kurtz's background. 
  5. "'Exterminate all the brutes!'" (p. 50)
    This is a comment written in the margin of Kurtz's report to the International Society for the Suppression of Savage customs.
  6. "'You don't talk with that man-you listen to him.'" (p. 53)
    p. 53
    The Harlequin offers this comment to Marlow about Kurtz. 
  7. "'I tell you,' he cried, 'this man has enlarged my mind.'" (p. 54)
    The Harlequin makes this statement about Kurtz to Marlow. 
  8. "'You can't judge Mr. Kurtz as you would an ordinary man.'" (p. 56)
    The Harlequin offers this comment to Marlow about Kurtz. 
  9. "But his soul was mad.  Being alone in the wilderness, it had looked within itself and, by heavens I tell you, it had gone mad." (p. 66)
    Marlow makes this comment as he reflects on meeting Kurtz alone in the wilderness.
  10. "'The horror!  The horror!" (p. 69)
    These are Kurtz's dying words.