Kingsley William Amis, CBE, 1922 - 1995
Promoting The Old Devils (1986 or 1987)
Born: 16 April 1922, Clapham, South London, England, UK
Died: 22 October 1995, London, England, UK
Amis was raised by "culpably boring" parents, his father was a clerk at Colman's Mustard. He was educated at City of London School, entering St John's College, Oxford in 1941. The next year he was called up for the war effort, serving in the Royal Corps of Signals. He returned to Oxford in 1945, joined the Communist Party (he got over it later) and met his first wife Hilary the next year (married 1948). He lectured in English at the University of Wales Swansea from 1949 to 1961. His first novel, Lucky Jim, was published in 1954. In 1963 Hilary discovered Amis' affair with novelist Elizabeth Jane Howard, Amis married Howard (1965 - 1983), his sons arranged from him to then live under the same roof with Hilary and her third husband for his remaining years. Although an above-average drinker who actually wrote three novels about drinking, he steadfastly wrote 500 words every day before taking his first drink. He wrote twenty novels, several volumes of poetry, short stories, radio and television scripts, and social criticism. He was the first novelist to pick up the James Bond series after the death of Ian Fleming with three volumes, one under his own name. He was knighted in 1990, suffered a stroke in August of 1995 and declined until his death at St Pancras Hospital, London.
Additional quotes from Wikiquote. Wikiquote entries are "sourced" and may include items longer than those included here, particularly for poets, lyricists, and dramatists.
Kingsley Amis quotes:
Click here to find books by Kingsley Amis at Amazon.com
- A bad review may spoil your breakfast, but you shouldn't allow it to spoil your lunch. permalink
- A dusty thudding in his head made the scene before him beat like a pulse. His mouth had been used as a latrine by some small creature of the night and then as its mausoleum. permalink
- All his faces were designed to express rage or loathing. Now that something had happened which really deserved a face, he had none to celebrate it with. As a kind of token, he made his Sex Life in Ancient Rome face. permalink
Lucky Jim (1954)
- Consciousness was upon him before he could get out of the way. permalink
- Death has this much to be said for it:
You don't have to get out of bed for it.
Wherever you happen to be
They bring it to you — free. permalink
- Education is one thing and instruction, however worthy, necessary and incidentally or monetarily educative, another. permalink
The King's English (1997)
- Growing older, I have lost the need to be political, which means, in this country, the need to be left. I am driven into grudging toleration of the Conservative Party because it is the party of non-politics, of resistance to politics. permalink
- He resolved, having done it once, never to move his eyeballs again. permalink
- He was of the faith chiefly in the sense that the church he currently did not attend was Catholic. permalink
One Fat Englishman (1963)
- His mouth had been used as a latrine by some small creature of the night, and then as its mausoleum. permalink
- His writing is sharp, lucid and logical, embodying imagination in the true sense of the word: common sense with wings. permalink
on Arthur C. Clarke in The Spectator (London, August 1973)
- How wrong people always were when they said: 'It's better to know the worst than go on not knowing either way.' No; they had it exactly the wrong way round. Tell me the truth, doctor, I'd sooner know. But only if the truth is what I want to hear. permalink
Lucky Jim (1954)
- I am always incorrigibly interested in the behaviour of the "human animal" and look forward to perusing divers effusions of your lively pen. permalink
- I sometimes feel that more lousy dishes are presented under the banner of pâté than any other. permalink
- I want a dish to taste good, rather than to have been seethed in pig's milk and served wrapped in a rhubarb leaf with grated thistle root. permalink
Please report any problems on this page! If you see any typos, incorrect attributions, deformed characters, or any other problem with this page, we want to fix it as soon
as possible. Please click here to report errors.
Note: Do not use titles in author searches, we don't use them, including president, senator, prime minister, king, queen, saint, or doctor, or abbreviations thereof. See explanation here.