From The Ugly Duckling:
- Prince: Do your people give a faint, surprised cheer whenever your drawbridge makes it down?Princess: Of course.Prince: In that case it came down about three minutes ago.
- And this gem:
- King: What you are trying to say in the fewest words possible is that my daughter is not beautiful.Chancellor: Her beauty is certainly elusive, Your Majesty.King: It is. It has eluded you, it has eluded me, it has eluded everybody who has seen her.
- And let us not forget the King's attempts to coach his daughter's stand in:
- Dulcibella (loudly): Oh, Prince Simon!King: No, no. You dont need to shout until he has said What? two or three times. Always consider the possibility that he isnt deaf. Softly, and giving the words a dying fall, letting them play around his head like a flight of doves.Dulcibella (still a little over-loud): O-o-o-o-h, Prinsimon!King: Keep the idea in your mind of a flight of doves rather than a flight of panic-stricken elephants, and you will be all right. Now Im going to get up, and you must, as it were, waft me into a seat by your side. (She starts wafting.) Not rescuing a drowning man, thats another idea altogether, useful at times, but at the moment inappropriate. Wafting. Prince Simon will put the necessary muscles into play all you require to do is to indicate by a gracious movement of the hand the seat you require him to take. Now! (He gets up, a little stiffly, and sits next to her.) That was better. Well, here we are. Now, I think you give me a look: something, let us say, half-way between the breathless adoration of a nun and the voluptuous abandonment of a woman of the world; with an undertone of regal dignity, touched, as it were, with good comradeship. Now try that. (She gives him a vacant look of bewilderment.) Frankly, that didnt quite get it. There was just a little something missing. An absence, as it were, of all the qualities I asked for, and in their place an odd resemblance to an unsatisfied fish.