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Off topic: A much-missed linguist
Thread poster: Textklick

Textklick  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:47
German to English
+ ...
Apr 5, 2004

I hope this link stays live.

What a collection of wit. One wonders in which of his many languages he first delivered these Sorely missed.

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jerrie  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:47
German to English
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Thank You Apr 5, 2004

For the link.
Wisdom, wit, funny, sad and oh so true.
A lovely, lovely man.

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Gillian Scheibelein  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:47
German to English
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Too true Apr 5, 2004

Even his funeral was featured on the main TV news here in Germany - this is usually reserved for heads of state.

He gladdened the hearts of so many. A great loss.

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United States
Local time: 17:47
French to English
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Ustinov quotes in English Apr 5, 2004

Beliefs are what divide people. Doubt unites them.

By increasing the size of the keyhole, today's playwrights are in danger of doing away with the door.

Children are the only form of immortality that we can be sure of.

Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious.

Critics search for ages for the wrong word, which, to give them credit, they eventually find.

Did you know that every two hours the nations of this world spend as much on armaments as they spend on the children of this world every year?

Her virtue was that she said what she thought, her vice that what she thought didn't amount to much.

I was irrevocably betrothed to laughter, the sound of which has always seemed to me to be the most civilised music in the world.

I'm convinced there's a small room in the attic of the Foreign Office where future diplomats are taught to stammer.

If the world should blow itself up, the last audible voice would be that of an expert saying it can't be done.

It is our responsibilities, not ourselves, that we should take seriously.

Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.

People who reach the top of the tree are only those who haven't got the qualifications to detain them at the bottom.

The only reason I made a commercial for American Express was to pay for my American Express bill.

The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come.

To refuse awards is another way of accepting them with more noise than is normal.

Contrary to general belief, I do not believe that friends are necessarily the people you like best, they are merely the people who got there first.

Peter Ustinov, Dear Me (1977)

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Textklick  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:47
German to English
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Whoops! Apr 5, 2004

Thanks for that Rita - I totally overlooked the fact that these were of course in German!

Let's hope that more come in written in French, Italian, Russian, Xhosa or whatever.

It would be a nice tribute

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Jean-Luc Dumont  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:47
English to French
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Nunc quo vadis Peter ? Apr 5, 2004

Yes he was great... Loved also his mimicry.
He had a good and long life.

I read one of his ancestors was a famous French pâtissier who fled to Russia to escape a slicing of the "guillotine" ... while his parents fled Russia after that other revolution...

He also had been the first choice for the Pink Panther but dropped out of the projet a few days before shooting started...the fool!


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DGK T-I  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:47
Member (2003)
Georgian to English
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a little more from Peter Ustinov Apr 6, 2004

Born in London, the only son of a Russian artist mother and a journalist father, Ustinov claimed also to have Swiss, Ethiopian, Italian and French blood - everything except English. Ustinov delighted in national differences and frequently referred to them in his works and public appearances.

He was - as he noted proudly in his autobiography Dear Me - conceived in Russia, baptized in Germany and reared under a succession of Cameroonian, Irish and German nurses.

His imposing figure, variously described as resembling a teddy bear or a giant panda, began at 12 pounds at birth and stayed with him throughout his career.

He was performing by age 3, mimicking politicians of the day when his parents invited Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie for dinner. His first attempts at acting one of three nymphs tempting Ulysses. "Ulysses wisely passed us by," he recalled.

Ustinov also set up a foundation dedicated to understanding between people across the globe and between generations. "I think knowing people is the best way of getting rid of prejudices. When I was young, I was brought up in an atmosphere which was just loaded with prejudices," he said in 2001. Ustinov treated getting older the way he treated everything else in life - as another experience to be added to his repertoire of anecdotes, quips and material for books.

When he turned 60, Ustinov was asked if he was tempted to take things a little easier. "I only feel 59," he said. "But what really surprises me," he added, "is that I don't say many different things now than I did when I was 20. The only difference is that having white hair means that people tend to listen now while they never did before."

It was an attitude that stayed with him as he turned 80. "Why should one slow down? I don't quite understand it," he said in an interview with The Associated Press in 2001.

Ustinov's son Igor said his father viewed his own mortality with humor. Responding to an interviewer who asked what Ustinov would like to see on his tombstone, he reportedly said: "Keep off the grass."

When he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1990, his main worry was how to reply to the invitation from the palace. "The invitation said, 'Delete whichever is inapplicable: I can kneel - I cannot kneel.' But there was nothing for those who can kneel but not get up," Ustinov recalled.

[please copy entire link into browser, as not all of it is red/clickable]

An inspiration

(thanks Text & Rita)

[Edited at 2004-04-06 15:19]

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