What makes an opening line become famous? Is it the words chosen? The rhythm produced? It's length? It seems strange that so much is put upon that first sentence of a piece of writing, but throughout history this has been the case.
Call me Ishmael.--Moby Dick (1851), Herman Melville
It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.--1984 (Nineteen Eighty-Four) (1949), George Orwell
He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff in the Gulf Stream and he had gone eighty-four days now without taking a fish.--The Old Man and the Sea (1952), Ernest Hemingway
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.--A Tale of Two Cities (1859) Charles Dickens
From short, to long, these sentences are proclaimed to be some of the most famous first lines in our history.
A table, two metal chairs, and Anthony Tyner occupied the small musty room.--The Keeper(2010) Cher Green
It seems like a good opening line. What do you think, does it compare?
How do your first lines compare? Share some of your most admired first lines in history.