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The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939) Poster

Quotes

[Last lines]

Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: [to one of the stone gargoyles] Why was I not made of stone - like thee?

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: I never realized till now how ugly I am, because you're so beautiful... I'm not a man! I'm not a beast! I'm about as shapeless as the man in the moon! I'm deaf, you know, but you can speak to me by signs.

Esmeralda: Why did you save me?

Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: You ask me why I saved you? Oh, I tried to carry you off, and the next day you gave me a drink of water and little pity.

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: Sanctuary! Sanctuary!

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Witness to flogging: Our whipper could make him cry.

Witness to flogging: Are you saying you have a better whipper in Marseilles than we have in Paris?

Witness to flogging: Yes!

[they knock him off the steps]

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: She gave me water.

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: [holding Esmeralda over his head, to the crowd] Sanctuary! Sanctuary!

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: Ohh, you asked me why I saved you. I tried to carry you off, and the next day, you gave me a drink of water, and a little pity.

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Quasimodo, the bell-ringer: [half-laughing, half-weeping] I'm about as shapeless as the man in the moon!

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Clopin: Try to take a purse out of that pocket, but if one single bell jingles, you fail.

Gringoire: And then?

Clopin: And then you hang!

Gringoire: [pondering for a moment] Can you do it?

Clopin: I'm above that sort of thing. I cut throats. I don't cut purses.

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Clopin: [to Gringoire immediately following flogging of Quasimodo] Never trust a man with pinched nostrils and thin lips.

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[Watching Esmeralda dance]

Louis XI, King of France: Doesn't she make your pulse beat faster?

The King's Physician: I'm a widower four times, sire, but I could begin all over again.

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Louis XI, King of France: Doctor, lend me half a livre.

The King's Physician: Half a livre?

Louis XI, King of France: Afraid I won't repay you?

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Gringoire: Your hands are like ice. You're not afraid are you?

Esmeralda: Not now oh Gringoire, Why did I ever come to Paris?

Gringoire: Don't cry darling

Esmeralda: I keep thinking and thinking How I came here to soften the king heart towards my people until my silly heart betrayed me for that I deserve to die.

Gringoire: You will not! I will get you free

Esmeralda: You will look out after my people when I am gone

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Frollo: The press should be destroyed and the printer hanged for blasphemy.

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Louis XI, King of France: [opening scene, at the print shop, after hearing the bells of Notre Dame] I've never heard a more beautiful Angelus. Who is the bellringer of Notre Dame?

Printer: Quasimodo, Your Majesty. The people simply call him the Hunchback.

Louis XI, King of France: What an odd name. And now, Master Fisher, let's see what reason my High Justice had for asking me to come to your shop. What do you call this apparatus?

Printer: The German inventor, Gutenberg, calls it a printing press, Your Majesty.

Louis XI, King of France: What is it for?

Printer: To print books, Your Majesty.

Louis XI, King of France: For whom?

Printer: For the people. They will learn to read when they can get books. I can print a volume, like this one, in a few weeks, and quite inexpensively.

Louis XI, King of France: Imagine, Frollo, a few weeks. When I ordered my prayer book, it took them years to copy it out and cost me a fortune. This is more beautiful than the printed book. Nevertheless, the printing press is a miracle.

Frollo: A horrifying miracle.

Louis XI, King of France: Horrifying? This small press?

Frollo: Small things have a way of overmastering the great. The Nile rat kills the crocodile. This small press can destroy a kingdom.

Louis XI, King of France: Oh, come, my High Justice, don't exaggerate. What is that?

Printer: It is the first page of a new book, Your Majesty.

Louis XI, King of France: Let me see it. "On the Freedom of Thought." Who wrote it?

Printer: Pierre Gringoire.

Louis XI, King of France: Gringoire? Who is he?

Printer: A French poet, Your Majesty.

Frollo: A heretic, sire. To spread him is to communicate disease.

Louis XI, King of France: How do you know? It may be a great blessing to France if people can get books and learn to read. To me, it's a new form of expression of thought. Out there is the old form. All over France, in every city, there stand cathedrals like this one, triumphal monuments of the past. They tower over the homes of our people like mighty guardians, keeping alive the invincible faith of the Christians. Every arch, every column, every statue is a carved leaf out of our history. A book in stone, glorifying the spirit of France. The cathedrals are the handwriting of the past. The press is of our time, and I won't do anything to stop it, Frollo.

Frollo: Sire, we must break the press and hang the printer. For, between them, they will destroy our old and holy order. No, I'm not such a fool. I, for my part, will protect France from these printed books, as I will protect it from witches, sorcerers and Gypsies, the foreign race that is overrunning all of Europe.

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