Pictures are pretty, as are words. Combined they bring joy the world over, to children and adults alike. Even though this blog is dedicated to a good turn of phrase, imagery is never far from the writer’s tongue and reader’s ear (or should I say eye or mind or heart?). Why not enhance the magic further with some quasi-random illustrations?

Where are the images taken from and are you allowed to use them?

Short answer: British Library’s Flickr Commons Project or from Internet Archive Book Images or from Unsplash, and yes. Having doubts? Read the longer answer.

You can follow QuiverQuotes on Flickr, to see these pics and others that I’ll use in future posts.



Title: St. Nicholas [serial] Year: 1873 (1870s) Authors: Dodge, Mary Mapes, 1830-1905
Featured in Periodic Before Dawn
The little girl applies alliteration (fire from flames), anaphora (why, why, why), enallage (apples does? possibly dialect and not deliberate), while asking some mighty tough questions.

Taken from an 1870s monthly American children’s magazine St. Nicholas Magazine, edited by Mary Mapes Dodge. A very young E.B. White was a contributor, and lifelong fan of the magazine. In fact, he opened his 1934 letter The St. Nicholas League, with the following praise for the magazine:

There is no doubt about it, the fierce desire to write and paint that burns in our land today, the incredible amount of writing and painting that still goes on in the face of heavy odds, are directly traceable to the St. Nicholas Magazine.

Did you notice the question mark on the casing of the grandfather clock? And on the building blocks down left?



Physical researches on sensation [by] Frank Allen [and others] Year: 1902 (1900s) Authors: Allen, Frank, 1874-
Featured in Window’s Ain’t Walls
“The gustatory equivalent of the Fechner Paradox.” Taken from Physical researches on sensation [by] Frank Allen [and others]. Available in print.

Frechner’s Paradox is not so much a paradox as an optical phenomenon derived from how we perceive the brightness of an image, when viewed with both eyes, as being approximately the average of the brightness perceived by each eye individually.

Earlier in the same book, the process of measuring the gustatory equivalent is described and it involves “… an electric current applied to the tongue. Intermittent stimulation was effected by electrolysis of the saliva with a periodically interrupted electric current.”

I kept thinking Frankenstein. Anyone else?


Title: The beggar's vision Year: 1921 (1920s); Authors: More, Brookes, 1859-1942 Braithwaite, William Stanley, 1878-1962
Featured in Periodic Before Dawn

One of a number of intriguing illustrations for The Beggar’s Vision by Brookes More, with Illustration by Tracy Porter Rudd and Introduction by William Stanley Braithwaite (1921, Boston, The Cornhill Publishing Company).

This illustration comes in the middle of a poem called The Last of Lost Eden, in the middle of the third stanza, sandwiched between the lines

Away from the shadow-sea, sailed on,
Down, down as the dark night slips!


Where winter winds never have wailed on
Their chilling wings willing for killing! —

All of the lines use alliteration nicely, and the last two lines use rhyme and assonance as well.

Available in print.


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