The depths of fascinated cogitation

Terry Pratchett's signature
Terry Pratchett’s signature (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

from Terry Pratchett‘s “Witches Abroad

“‘I thought she was going to get married to the king,’ said Gammer Brevis. ‘Everyone did,’ said Nanny. ‘But you know Magrat. She tends to be open to Ideas. Now she says she refuses to be a sex object.’ They all thought about this. Finally Gammer Brevis said, slowly, in the manner of one surfacing from the depths of fascinated cogitation, ‘But she’s never been a sex object.’”

Witches Abroad
Witches Abroad (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I found this poem by Marilese (poetfreak) that mentions this “surfacing from the depths of fascinated cogitation”:

I don’t know why this little phrase has always amused me.  Is it the “fascinated cogitation” or is it the “surfacing from the depths”?  Or maybe it is the “in the manner of” phrase?  Whatever it is, from the very first time I read this book this quote has stuck in my memory.


If you’ve never read a Terry Pratchett book, I highly recommend his writing.  I especially like the Tiffany Aching series: The Wee Free Men, A Hat Full of Sky, Wintersmith, and I Shall Wear Midnight.

Cover of "A Hat Full of Sky: The Continui...
Cover via Amazon
Cover of "I Shall Wear Midnight"
Cover of I Shall Wear Midnight

Other books I especially enjoy by Terry Pratchett:  Equal Rites, Maskerade, Witches Abroad, Mort, Reaper Man, Soul Music.  The books with Granny Weatherwax, the Wee Free Men and/or DEATH are my particular favorites.

Maskerade (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you have a favorite quote from one of  Terry Pratchett’s books, please share it in a comment!  I’d be interested to hear what sticks in other people’s minds.


blog post “what order to read the Pratchett Discworld books” —



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I am a pianist, musician, music teacher, choir director, mother, wife, daughter, sister, cousin, sister-in-law, friend, neighbor. I enjoy music (of course!), quilting, sewing, beading, traveling, kayaking, camping, biking, hiking, gardening, knitting, scrapbooking, cooking, reading, poetry, drinking good coffee, and having fun with family and friends. NOTE -- Creative Commons License: All work of The Tromp Queen (quirkyjazz, aka Jill) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 Unported License.

2 thoughts on “The depths of fascinated cogitation”

  1. I’ve never tried Terry Pratchett even though I’ve heard a lot about him. His books stare accusingly at me in the library, but there’s a huge mental block which stops me from reaching out ! Should try again 🙂

    1. I encourage you to try again, yes! His books sometimes ramble a bit and often the beginnings do not reach out to grab you, but the humor and wit of his writing OFTEN gets me laughing out loud. Really! I think the Tiffany Aching series might be the best bet for a beginning for you. The first book spends way too long on one plot point (you’ll see what I mean if you read it), but the hilarity is worth it. The second book in that series is one of my absolute favorites of his. EVERY single time I read a certain scene, I am nearly rolling on the floor and/or snorting with laughter. Any of the books from the list in my post would be okay to grab, too.

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