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Quotes: The Bartimaeus Trilogy

"'Whoops! In all this excitement I nearly forgot to tell you what I came for!' The boy put on a deep and plangent voice: 'Know ye that I have devotedly carried out my charge. I have spied on Lovelace. I have sought the secrets of the Amulet. I have risked all for you, O my master. And the results are' — here it adopted a more normal, sardonic tone — 'you're an idiot. You've no idea what you've done. The Amulet is so powerful it's been in government keeping for decades - until Lovelace had it stolen, that is. His assassin murdered a senior magician for it. In those circumstances, I don't think it's likely that he'll worry about killing Underwood to retrieve it, do you?'"
The Amulet of Samarkand

"When all was done that could be done, Devereaux and his senior ministers refreshed themselves with champagne, cold meats, and jellied fruits and listened properly to my master’s story. And what a story it was. What an outrageous yarn he told. Even I, with my long experience of human duplicity, was flabbergasted by the whoppers that boy came up with. To be frank, he did have a lot of things to hide: his own theft of the Amulet, for example, and my little encounter with Sholto Pinn. But a lot of his fibs were quite unnecessary. I had to sit quietly on his shoulder and hear myself referred to as a 'minor imp' (five times), a 'sort of foliot' (twice), and even (once) as a 'homunculus.' I ask you—how insulting is that?"
The Amulet of Samarkand

"Djinni," he said, "answer me a question."
The sand whirled faster. "I know the secrets of the earth and the mysteries of the air; I know the key to the minds of women." (Patently all lies, especially the last bit.) "What do you wish? Speak."
"What is essence?"
The sand halted in midair. "Eh?"
Ptolemy's Gate

"A dozen more questions occurred to me. Not to mention twenty-two possible solutions to each one, sixteen resulting hypotheses and counter-theorems, eight abstract speculations, a quadrilateral equation, two axioms, and a limerick. That's raw intelligence for you.”
Ptolemy's Gate

"Alongside, in another prism, a hideous black demon was visible on the first plane. It growled and pranced, shaking its fist at the awestruck throng. Beyond this, a stage had been set up. A banner proclaimed the title of the piece: Colonial Treachery Overcome; actors ran about, telling the official story of the war with the aid of rubber swords and papier-mâché." Everywhere you looked smiling ladies shoved copies of Real War Stories into outstretched hands. Such was the ceaseless noise and color and confusion that it was impossible for anyone present to think straight, let alone frame a coherent argument against the war. (I saw Mandrake's hand behind much of this. It had all his attention to detail, together with the theatrically he had learned off his mate, the playwright Makepeace. A perfect combination of the crude and the subtle."
Ptolemy's Gate

"In the end, I agreed to her request, and since she is my guest and I have sworn it before great Ra himself, it is a sacred vow. Consequently, much against my better judgment, I am going to give you your just reward." There was a pause while Faquarl and I took in the implications of this, ran through the subtleties and nuances of the words, and continued to look up at the magician with expressions of watchful doubt. (We were old hands, you see, well aware of the latent ambiguities in even the most blandly reassuring sentence. Dismissing us sounded good, naturally, but it needed clarification; and as for getting our "just reward,"... in the mouth of someone like Khaba, that phrase was almost an overt threat.)
The Ring of Solomon

Solomon: And that vulgar song you were singing?
Bartimaeus: Um – which vulgar song was that? I sing so many.
The Ring of Solomon

Oh meanest and most despicable of my djinn, and don't look around so blankly; I'm talking to you.
Solomon to Bartimaeus, The Ring of Solomon