Study Guide

Around the World in Eighty Days Quotes

By Jules Verne

  • Respect and Reputation

    [He] questioned himself whether a human heart really beat beneath this cold exterior, and whether Phileas Fogg had any sense of the beauties of nature. (11.1)

    Sir Francis Cromarty is wondering if Phileas Fogg is a human being. Can a gentleman really be a gentleman if he isn't in touch with his emotions?

    […] he seemed always to avoid attracting attention […]. (1.1)

    Phileas Fogg has the reputation of being chill and reserved. But a gentleman should be bold and daring, so can Phileas be a gentleman? Is this even possible?

    Passepartout, desirous of respecting the gentleman whom he served, ventured a mild remonstrance on such conduct; which being ill received, he took his leave." (2.7)

    Passepartout's former master, a supposed gentlemen, didn't really act like a gentlemen—which is why Passepartout threw up some digits and left.

    "What a domestic and regular gentlemen! A real machine; well, I don't mind serving a machine." (2.11)

    Aw… Passepartout and Phileas Fogg go together like peanut butter and jelly. Okay, maybe more like a battery and a robot? Phileas Fogg is rather addicted to numbers and a regular schedule.

    On the day of the robbery a well-dressed gentleman of polished manners, and with a well-to-do air, had been observed going to and fro in the paying-room, where the crime was committed. (3.4)

    Stealing from the bank requires skill, sneakiness, and polished manners. Wait… doesn't Phileas Fogg possess each of these qualities? Huh.

    "A true Englishman doesn't joke when he is talking about so serious a thing as a wager," replied Phileas Fogg, solemnly. (3.11)

    English gentlemen pride themselves on, well, their pride, and Phileas Fogg is no exception. Go around the world in eighty days? He'll definitely stake his reputation on that.

    "Why, you are a man of heart!"

    "Sometimes," replied Phileas Fogg quietly, "when I have the time." (12.19-20)

    Good thing Phileas has decided to rescue a princess in distress. Looks like there's a heart underneath all that gentlemanly manliness after all… well, if he has the time.

    But this man of nerve manifested neither impatience nor annoyance; it seemed as if the storm were a part of his programme, and had been foreseen. (18.2)

    Nothing should worry a gentleman—he's supposed to be calm, collected, and all knowing, all the time. Phileas Fogg must have a crystal ball tucked under his waistcoat.

    The detective had a feeling akin to humiliation in profiting by the kindness of Mr. Fogg. (20.14)

    Gentlemen can tell when other gentlemen are just doing their duty. Mr. Fogg has earned Detective Fix's respect by being kind to him when he didn't really have to.

    "But I am going to fight a duel with this gentleman."

    The only gentlemanly thing to do with another gentleman is challenge him and kill him with a pistol. Colonel Stamp Proctor has insulted Phileas Fogg's honor, so now it's time to waste him.

  • Money

    He was not lavish, nor, on the contrary, avaricious; for whenever he knew that money was needed for a noble, useful, or benevolent purpose, he supplied it quickly, and sometimes anonymously. (1.4)

    There's something about a rich dude who handles his money like a pro that we kind of like… Phileas, are you available next Friday night?

    Was Phileas Fogg rich? Undoubtedly. But those who knew him best could not imagine how he had made his fortune, and Mr. Fogg was the last person to whom to apply for the information. (1.4)

    Phileas Fogg has buckets of cash, but nobody knows where it comes from. This is part of how he becomes Suspect Number One for Detective Fix as he tries to solve the bank robbery.

    His sole pasttimes were reading the paper and playing whist. (1.6)

    Ain't that the life. Reading and gambling—and ol' Phileas isn't even retired.

    He often won at this game, which, as a silent one, harmonized with his nature; but his winnings never went into his purse, being reserved as a fund for his charities. (1.6)

    Aw, what a great guy. Phileas Fogg donates his gambling earnings to charity. Of course, it's not like he really needs the winnings for himself…

    If to live in this style is to be eccentric, it must be confessed that there is something good in eccentricity! (1.8)

    Spending money like an oddball is bound to make people curious about you. Phileas Fogg's OCD is maybe something that will endear him to someone, somewhere, someday…

    Passepartout nearly dropped the bag, as if the twenty thousand pounds were in gold, weighing him down. (4.11)

    Phileas is all, "Here Passepartout, carry this bag worth, like, a billion dollars—just be sure to keep it safe." And Passepartout is a little freaked out. Looks like someone's way more comfortable with large sums of money than someone else.

    "My gas-burner, which I forgot to turn off, and which is at this moment burning—at my expense." (8.12)

    Okay, so Phileas has tons of money and Passepartout makes a relatively small mistake: He forgets to turn off the gas before they hastily depart to travel around the world. Who's going to pay for this? Why Passepartout, of course. Phileas opts to go the teach-him-a-lesson route.

    "As for the money, Heaven grant there may be some left! But the fellow has already spent in travelling rewards, trials, bail, elephants, and all sorts of charges, more than five thousand pounds. Yet after all, the Bank is rich." (24.15)

    Poor Detective Fix won't get much of the reward money if Phileas Fogg spends it all on his trip around the world. Luckily for Fix, even though Fogg is innocent and Fix is a thorn in his side, Fogg winds up sharing his winnings with the detective anyway.

    "Up to this time money had smoothed away every obstacle. Now money failed." (32.10)

    Maybe it's really true that money can't solve all your problems. When Phileas Fogg gets in a pickle, it's usually time to bust out the green. But Captain Andrew Speedy won't take dollar bills for an answer, so now it's up to Phileas Fogg to devise something sneaky.

    "Besides, passengers at two thousand dollars are no longer passengers, but valuable merchandise." (32.12)

    Is there a point where the money you're worth makes you less than a person? Captain Andrew Speedy certainly thinks so. Phileas Fogg offered him $2,000 a head to take his crew across the Atlantic. No pressure.

  • Exploration

    "The world has grown smaller, since a man can now go round it ten times more quickly than a hundred years ago." (3.7)

    Sometimes getting cozy in a smaller space is good, but when we're talking about the entire world, do we really want to be that close? Debate that with the Reform club.

    "Heaven preserve me! But I would wager four thousand pounds that such a journey, made under these conditions, is impossible." (3.9)

    They (a.k.a. rich white European dudes) said the same about climbing Mt. Everest, you know. But Phileas Fogg is bound to prove to his cronies at the Reform club that exploring the world at a rapid pace will prove quite lucrative.

    But the Red Sea is full of caprice, and often boisterous, like most long and narrow gulfs. When the wind came from the African or Asian coast, the Mongolia, with her long hull, rolled fearfully. (9.2)

    Sea travel, much like any kind of travel, can be most unpredictable. But Phileas Fogg always seems to take this in stride. Maybe he has King Triton on a direct line or something.

    He was quite ignorant that it is forbidden to Christians to enter certain temples, and that even the faithful must not go in without first leaving their shoes outside the door. (10.11)

    And then there's that pesky problem of different countries having different cultures and customs. Maybe ignorance really isn't bliss… Poor Passepartout should have read up on Indian customs before blundering around in Bangladesh.

    The agile Frenchman was soon upon his feet again, and lost no time in knocking down two of his long-gowned adversaries with his fists and a vigorous application of his toes […]. (10.12)

    What's an adventure without a little fistfight now and then? Wait—is it okay for Passepartout to hit a priest? Note to selves: Brass knuckles may come in handy while exploring.

    Phileas Fogg and Sir Francis Cromarty, plunged to the neck in the peculiar howdahs provided for them, were horribly jostled by the swift trotting of the elephant, spurred on as he was by the skillful Parsee; but they endured the discomfort with true British phlegm. (11.2)

    When the adventurers' train breaks down, it seems the only way to traverse the Indian jungle is to hang off the side of an elephant in a basket. How… comfortable?

    It was thereabouts that Feringhea, the Thuggee chief, king of the stranglers, held his sway. These ruffians, united by a secret bond, strangled victims of every age in honor of the goddess Death, without ever shedding blood; there was a period when this part of the country could scarcely be travelled over without corpses being found in every direction. (11.9)

    Phileas needs to hurry that elephant up through the jungles of India. On a totally different note, Thuggee and the Stranglers might make an amazing band name.

    "Not at all; but I knew that some obstacle or other would sooner or later arise on my route." (11.16)

    A prepared adventurer is a much more successful adventurer. Nothing like well-equipped exploring.

    In ten minutes several revolver-shots could be exchanged. (29.12)

    Defending oneself on an adventure is definitely key to making sure you make it home (outside of a coffin-shaped box). But defending your honor with pistols? We're thinking Phileas Fogg and Colonel Proctor could've just played Rock-Paper-Scissors.

    The Sioux had at the same time invaded the cars, skipping like enraged monkeys over the roofs, thrusting open the doors, and fighting hand to hand with the passengers. (29.25)

    On the way to Fort Kearney, Fogg and company are onboard a train that is jumped by Sioux Indians. Comparing the Sioux people to monkeys is super racist, as is failing to appreciate why they might not be thrilled to have railroads being built through their land. Around the World in Eighty Days is definitely a product of its times… oof.

  • Time

    He breakfasted and dined at the club, at hours mathematically fixed. (1.7)

    Phileas Fogg keeps a strict schedule, and we do mean strict. This guy literally chows down at the same time every single day. We wonder what this says about his personality…

    "What time is it?" (1.11)

    It's time for lunch. Nah, just kidding. How many times are they going to ask this question throughout the novel? Enough that you probably don't want to try to count.

    "Now from this moment, twenty-nine minutes after eleven, a.m., this Wednesday, October 2nd, you are in my service." (1.12)

    What an employer—Phileas documents not just the date, but the time he hires people. Hope Passepartout can handle working for such a precise dude.

    "I'd like to see you do it in eighty days." (3.9)

    Gauntlet thrown, challenge accepted: Phileas Fogg is so going to take this bet, giving him just another reason to obsessively track time.

    "Left London, Wednesday, October 2nd, at 8:45 p.m." (7.7)

    Phileas Fogg keeps track of his journey just like a diary, but he doesn't include any juicy details—nope, instead he bothers to note things like specific times.

    "You are in a great hurry then?" (8.4)

    Should we all be in a hurry, or is there something to be said for taking our time? For Phileas Fogg, every millisecond counts.

    Eleven o'clock was striking; Mr. Fogg was an hour in advance of time. (15.19)

    Early is on time, and on time is late—at least that's what our moms always say. In Phileas's case, adding up time gained is one step closer to winning that big cash prize waiting for him at the end.

    All the detective's hopes and wishes were now centered on Hong Kong; for the steamer's stay at Singapore would be too brief to enable him to take any steps there. (16.7)

    That's the funny thing about machines: They're always breaking down when you need them the most. Detective Fix apparently depends on these delays in order to catch Phileas Fogg and bring him to justice.

    "I could not risk myself, my men, or my little boat of scarcely twenty tons on so long a voyage at this time of year." (20.10)

    Finally a character—in this case, a sea captain—who isn't swayed by money. Time (both duration of voyage and time of year) are far bigger factors in this guy's decision-making process. Maybe Phileas Fogg has met his match this time.

    Having made the tour of the world, he was behindhand five minutes. He had lost the wager! (34.19)

    When time means winning or losing, every second counts. But what does the entire adventure mean for Phileas Fogg? He doesn't need the money, so what are the stakes of finishing in time for him?

  • Happiness

    He lived alone, and so to speak, outside of every social relation; and as he knew that in this world account must be taken of friction, and that friction retards, he never rubbed against anybody. (2.4)

    Shutting people out might be safe, but it certainly is lonely. Phileas Fogg has a taste for adventure, but when it comes to personal relationships, he's kind of a scaredy-cat.

    Having scrutinized the house from top to bottom, he rubbed his hands, a broad smile overspread his features, and he said joyfully, "This is just what I wanted! Ah, we shall get on together, Mr. Fogg and I!" (2.10)

    Passepartout is desperate for a little vacation—he wants to serve someone with a predictable schedule and who isn't interested in adventure. Taking things slow and steady would make him super happy.

    Happily, however, for Mr. Fogg, the animal's instruction in this direction had not gone far, and the elephant still preserved his natural gentleness. (9.20)

    Here's something to consider: There are different kinds of happiness. There's the joyous feeling, but then there's also happiness as a sort of luck—and it's this second kind we may see at work here.

    In the way the strange gentleman was going on, he would leave the world without having done any good to himself or anybody else. (11.2)

    Sir Francis Cromarty is worried about Phileas Fogg. When Fogg kicks the bucket, will he have ever experienced any happiness? At the rate Fogg is zipping along, caring about nothing, Sir Francis thinks perhaps not.

    He was passing methodically in his orbit around the world, regardless of the lesser stars which gravitated around him. (17.20)

    If Phileas Fogg is an orbital moon, it might be good for him to be a bit more down to earth once in a while. He's missing out on what's happening here on his own planet, the one he's tripping on.

    At the fifty-seventh second the door of the saloon opened; and the pendulum had not beat the sixtieth second when Phileas Fogg appeared, followed by an excited crowd who had forced their way through the club doors, and in his calm voice, said, "Here I am, gentlemen!" (36.11)

    Phileas Fogg has won and there is much rejoicing. But what is Phileas most happy about? He certainly doesn't need the money…

    Passepartout went on his errand enchanted. (37.2)

    Sometimes we are happy for ourselves, but as we see here with Passepartout and his wedding errand, sometimes we are simply delighted for those we care about.

    His object was, however, to be victorious, not to win money. (37.9)

    Being victorious leads to an increase in reputation and respect, something Phileas Fogg is definitely after. Since he's rich already, a gigantic bunch of money is just icing on the cake.

    It need not be said that the marriage took place forty-eight hours after, and that Passepartout, glowing and dazzling, gave the bride away. (37.11)

    Passepartout deeply respects the two people getting hitched. Phileas and Aouda are perfect for each other and he's so excited to be a part of their happiness. Happiness can be contagious.

    Nothing you say? Perhaps so; nothing but a charming woman, who, strange as it may appear, made him the happiest of men. (37.14)

    Jules Verne asks us what Phileas Fogg has gained by going around the world. Shmoop's not going to lie: Dude looks like one happy bloke.

  • Chance

    Everybody knows that England is the world of betting men, who are of a higher class than mere gamblers; to bet is in the English temperament. (5.6)

    Oh really, Jules Verne? Wanna bet? (Sorry—bad joke. We couldn't resist.)

    The trip was being accomplished most successfully, and Passepartout was enchanted with the congenial companion which chance had secured him in the person of the delightful Fix. (9.9)

    Oh, Passepartout—he's so gullible. Is Detective Fix really on board the ship because of chance? Shmoop thinks he might be looking for someone in particular…

    Looking at the matter from every point of view, it did not seem to him impossible that, by some mistake, the man might have embarked on the Carnatic at the last moment. (21.9)

    Ever heard the saying, "May fortune favor the foolish"? We're keeping our fingers crossed for Passepartout. Phileas Fogg is counting on fate to get his servant to Yokohama… somehow.

    So great had been the expense of his tour, that, even had he won, it would not have enriched him. (35.2)

    What exactly are we talking about when we think of the word "enriched"? Phileas Fogg has spent nearly every penny of the reward money on travel expenses. But we're thinking he's been "enriched" in plenty of non-financial ways, all thanks to chance.

    Mr. Fogg's course, however, was fully decided upon; he knew what remained for him to do. (35.3)

    What role does fate play in this book? Phileas is such a calculated and deliberate man, and yet here we're told his course is "fully decided upon." Who is doing the deciding, though? Is it Phileas or someone or something else?

    "Yes, madam; but circumstances have been against me. Still, I beg to place the little I have left at your service." (35.19)

    Phileas Fogg, master planner extraordinaire, still has to leave it up to fate in the end—and in this case, fate is a woman named Aouda. Shortly after Phileas says this to her, she asks him to marry her.

    "Even if we admit that fortune has favoured him, he can scarcely have reached America." (36.7)

    It seems the bummed out members of the Reform club think that determination and perseverance can't possibly count for anything. Are they underestimating Phileas or are they underestimating the role that chance plays in his success?

    "But if I had not crossed India, I should not have saved Aouda; she would not have been my wife and—" (37.12)

    Funny how things tend to work out for a reason. Fogg stops to save Aouda from certain death purely by chance, and it workes out for him pretty well in the end.

    "Mr. Fogg, this is a delay greatly to your disadvantage."

    "No, Sir Francis, it was foreseen." (11.33)

    Phileas says this a lot in the novel. Does he believe this at the end? Do you? Why or why not?

    "I maintain," said Stuart, "that the chances are in favour of the thief, who must be a shrewd fellow." (3.14)

    The logic here seems to be that the thief must be sharp, and so the odds are in his favor. On the flip side, a less "shrewd" thief might have worse chances.