arcana imperii :: the book of j


the proust questionnaire 02

proust answered another questionnaire seven years later, aged twenty. similar questions yet quite different answers...

  • your most marked characteristic?

  •             a craving to be loved, or, to be more precise, to be caressed and spoiled rather than to be admired

  • the quality you most like in a man?

  •             feminine charm

  • the quality you most like in a woman?

  •             a man's virtues, and frankness in friendship

  • what do you most value in your friends?

  •             tenderness - provided they possess a physical charm which makes their tenderness worth having

  • what is your principal defect?

  •             lack of understanding; weakness of will

  • what is your favourite occupation?

  •             loving

  • what is your dream of happiness?

  •             not, i fear, a very elevated one. i really haven't the courage to say what it is, and if i did i should probably destroy it by the
                mere fact of putting it into words.

  • what to your mind would be the greatest of misfortunes?

  •             never to have known my mother or my grandmother

  • what would you like to be?

  •             myself - as those whom i admire would like me to be

  • in what country would you like to live?

  •             one where certain things that i want would be realised,
                and where feelings of tenderness would always be reciprocated. [proust's underlining]

  • what is your favourite colour?

  •             beauty lies not in colours but in thier harmony

  • what is your favourite flower?

  •             hers - but apart from that, all

  • what is your favourite bird?

  •             the swallow

  • who are your favourite prose writers?

  •          at the moment, anatole france and pierre loti

  • who are your favourite poets?

  •             baudelaire and alfred de vigny

  • who is your favourite hero of fiction?

  •             hamlet

  • who are your favourite heroines of fiction?

  •             phèdre berenice

  • who are your favourite composers?

  •             beethoven, wagner, schumann

  • who are your favourite painters?

  •             leonardo da vinci, rembrandt

  • who are your heroes in real life?

  •             monsieur darlu, monsieur boutroux (professors)

  • who are your favourite heroines of history?

  •             cleopatra

  • what are your favourite names?

  •             i only have one at a time

  • what is it you most dislike?

  •             my own worst qualities

  • what historical figures do you most despise?
                i am not sufficiently educated to say

  • what event in military history do you most admire?

  •             my own enlistment as a volunteer!

  • what reform do you most admire?

  •             (no response)

  • what natural gift would you most like to possess?

  •             will-power and irresistible charm

  • how would you like to die?

  •             a better man than i am, and much beloved

  • what is your present state of mind?

  •             annoyance at having to think about myself in order to answer these questions

  • to what faults do you feel most indulgent?

  •             those that i understand

  • what is your motto?

  •             i prefer not to say, for fear it might bring me bad luck

    via chick.