Bureauracy

Charles Dickens quotations on the theme of Bureauracy.

 

Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870) was one of the foremost writers from the Victorian era and remains a popular widely-read author today. During his lifetime he produced 15 novels, five novellas, and a large number of shorter stories and essays. He wrote from personal experiences and concerned himself with a number of contemporary social issues whilst supporting numerous charitable causes, giving assistance in time, money or personal effort. Our archive of over 450 Charles Dickens quotations are organised by both source material, i.e. the work or speech in which it originally appeared, and also grouped thematically. In this archive, we have collected quotations from Charles Dickens works on the theme of Bureauracy.


Click on a quotation for more information, including links to original source, the context in which it appeared, related material and the ability to give each quotation a rating and help us compile the very best Charles Dickens quotations.


Britannia, that unfortunate female, is always before me, like a trussed fowl: skewered through and through with office-pens, and bound hand and foot with red tape.

Background. "Britannia, that unfortunate female, is always before me, like a trussed fowl: skewered through and through with office-pens, and bound hand and foot with red tape." is a quotation from David Copperfield (Chapter 43). David Copperfield is the eighth novel by Charles Dickens, first published between 1849 and 1850.   Context. This quote, by David Copperfield speaking as a parliamentary reporter. The quote, in the semi-autobiographical novel David Copperfield, reflects Charles Dickens' own experiences and observations working as a [...]

2018-09-14T14:49:14+00:00Categories: David Copperfield|Tags: , , |

I expect a judgment. Shortly.

Background. "I expect a judgment. Shortly." is a quotation from Bleak House (Chapter 3). Bleak House was the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, intended to illustrate the evils caused by long, drawn-out legal cases in the Court of Chancery.     Context. Taken from the following passage in Chapter 3 of Bleak House: When we got under the colonnade, Mr. Kenge remembered that he must go back for a moment to ask a question and left us in the fog, with [...]

2017-12-08T13:09:13+00:00Categories: Bleak House|Tags: , |

It being one of the principles of the Circumlocution Office never, on any account whatever, to give a straightforward answer.

Background. "It being one of the principles of the Circumlocution Office never, on any account whatever, to give a straightforward answer." is a quotation from Little Dorrit (Book 1, Chapter 10). Little Dorrit was the eleventh novel from Charles Dickens, serialised between 1855 and 1857. A rags to riches story set in the 1820’s, Little Dorrit centres around the changing fortunes of the Dorrit family.   Context. The term ‘Circumlocution Office’ was first coined by Charles Dickens in his novel [...]

2018-08-28T20:54:06+00:00Categories: Little Dorrit|Tags: , |

No public business of any kind could possibly be done at any time without the acquiescence of the Circumlocution Office. Its finger was in the largest public pie, and in the smallest public tart. It was equally impossible to do the plainest right and to undo the plainest wrong without the express authority of the Circumlocution Office.

Background. "No public business of any kind could possibly be done at any time without the acquiescence of the Circumlocution Office. Its finger was in the largest public pie, and in the smallest public tart. It was equally impossible to do the plainest right and to undo the plainest wrong without the express authority of the Circumlocution Office." is a quotation from Little Dorrit (Book 1, Chapter 10). Little Dorrit was the eleventh novel from Charles Dickens, serialised between 1855 [...]

2018-08-28T20:52:20+00:00Categories: Little Dorrit|Tags: , , |

The Department is accessible to the Public, if the Public approaches it according to the official forms; if the Public does not approach it according to the official forms, the Public has itself to blame.

Background. "The Department is accessible to the Public, if the Public approaches it according to the official forms; if the Public does not approach it according to the official forms, the Public has itself to blame." is a quotation from Little Dorrit (Book 1, Chapter 10). Little Dorrit was the eleventh novel from Charles Dickens, serialised between 1855 and 1857. A rags to riches story set in the 1820’s, Little Dorrit centres around the changing fortunes of the Dorrit family. [...]

2018-02-23T19:44:16+00:00Categories: Little Dorrit|Tags: , |

Whatever was required to be done, the Circumlocution Office was beforehand with all the public departments in the art of perceiving – HOW NOT TO DO IT.

Background. "Whatever was required to be done, the Circumlocution Office was beforehand with all the public departments in the art of perceiving - HOW NOT TO DO IT" is a quotation from Little Dorrit (Book 1, Chapter 10). Little Dorrit was the eleventh novel from Charles Dickens, serialised between 1855 and 1857. A rags to riches story set in the 1820’s, Little Dorrit centres around the changing fortunes of the Dorrit family.   Context. The term ‘Circumlocution Office’ was first [...]

2018-02-23T19:44:47+00:00Categories: Little Dorrit|Tags: , |

Keep out of Chancery…. It’s being ground to bits in a slow mill; it’s being roasted at a slow fire; it’s being stung to death by single bees; it’s being drowned by drops; it’s going mad by grains.

Background. "Keep out of Chancery.... It's being ground to bits in a slow mill; it's being roasted at a slow fire; it's being stung to death by single bees; it's being drowned by drops; it's going mad by grains" is a quotation from Bleak House (Chapter 5). Bleak House was the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, intended to illustrate the evils caused by long, drawn-out legal cases in the Court of Chancery.   Have Your Say. Give your view on "Keep [...]

2017-12-08T13:23:08+00:00Categories: Bleak House|Tags: , |

The one great principle of the English law is, to make business for itself. There is no other principle distinctly, certainly, and consistently maintained through all its narrow turnings.

Background. "The one great principle of the English law is, to make business for itself. There is no other principle distinctly, certainly, and consistently maintained through all its narrow turnings." is a quotation from Bleak House (Chapter 39). Bleak House was the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, intended to illustrate the evils caused by long, drawn-out legal cases in the Court of Chancery.   Context. This quotation is taken from the following passage in Chapter 39 (Attorney and Client) of [...]

2018-08-25T07:31:18+00:00Categories: Bleak House|Tags: , , |

How mankind ever came to be afflicted with wiglomeration, or for whose sins these young people ever fell into a pit of it, I don’t know; so it is.

Background. "How mankind ever came to be afflicted with wiglomeration, or for whose sins these young people ever fell into a pit of it, I don’t know; so it is." is a quotation from Bleak House (Chapter 8). Bleak House was the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, intended to illustrate the evils caused by long, drawn-out legal cases in the Court of Chancery.   Context.  Taken from the following passage in Chapter 8 (Covering a Multitude of Sins) of Bleak House: "He [...]

2018-09-13T21:15:31+00:00Categories: Bleak House|Tags: , |

In trickery, evasion, procrastination, spoliation, botheration, under false pretences of all sorts, there are influences that can never come to good.

Background. "In trickery, evasion, procrastination, spoliation, botheration, under false pretences of all sorts, there are influences that can never come to good." is a quotation from Bleak House (Chapter 1). Bleak House was the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, intended to illustrate the evils caused by long, drawn-out legal cases in the Court of Chancery.   Context. Taken from the following passage in Chapter 1 (In Chancery) of Bleak House: How many people out of the suit Jarndyce and Jarndyce [...]

2018-04-07T07:42:54+00:00Categories: Bleak House|Tags: , |