Quote of the week

Her cinnabar-tinted topsail, nicking the hot blue horizon, showed she was a Spanish wheat-boat hours before she reached Marseilles mole. …she threaded her way through the shipping to her berth at the quay as quietly as a veiled woman slips through a bazaar.

This is from the opening passage of “The Manner of Men” in Limits and Renewals (1932) – a story set in the great Roman port of Marseilles.

Three sea captains are reminiscing, and one recalls the moral courage of Paul of Tarsus during a ship-wreck on the island of Malta, when he was a prisoner on his way to a terrible death in Rome, in the arena.