‘My dear Louisa,’ returned Mr. Gradgrind, reassured and satisfied. ‘You correct me justly. I merely wished to discharge my duty.’
‘What do I know, father,’ said Louisa in her quiet manner, ‘of tastes and fancies; of aspirations and affections; of all that part of my nature in which such light things might have been nourished? What escape have I had from problems that could be demonstrated, and realities that could be grasped?’ As she said it, she unconsciously closed her hand, as if upon a solid object, and slowly opened it as though she were releasing dust or ash.
‘My dear,’ assented her eminently practical parent, ‘quite true, quite true.’