Tag Archives: humor

The Devil’s Dictionary: Attorney

“Attorney, n. A person legally appointed to mismanage one’s affairs which one has not himself the skill to rightly mismanage.”

Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. David E. Schultz and S.J. Joshi, eds. The Unabridged Devil’s Dictionary. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 2000. 

George Bernard Shaw on Newspapers

“A newspaper is a device unable to discriminate between a bicycle accident and the collapse of civilization.”

George Bernard Shaw

Excerpted from: Winokur, Jon, ed. The Big Curmudgeon. New York: Black Dog & Leventhal, 2007.

The Algonquin Wits: Heywood Broun

“Many people [in the city] buy a house just to get the trees which are thrown in with the deal. I’ve got three and a large part of the overhang from a tree next door. This trespasser, from a strictly material standpoint, is a finer three than any which I possess, but I prefer my own horse chestnut just the same. It’s a one-man tree and would never think of dividing its loyalty between two houses.”

Excerpted from: Drennan, Robert E., ed. The Algonquin Wits. New York: Kensington, 1985.

Devil’s Dictionary: Presidency

“Presidency, n. The greased pig in the field game of American politics.”

Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. David E. Schultz and S.J. Joshi, eds. The Unabridged Devil’s Dictionary. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 2000.

The Algonquin Wits: Franklin Pierce Adams

“Ninety-two percent of the stuff told you in confidence you couldn’t get anyone else to listen to.”

Franklin Pierce Adams

Excerpted from: Drennan, Robert E., ed. The Algonquin Wits. New York: Kensington, 1985.

The Devil’s Dictionary: Corporation

“Corporation, n. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility.”

Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. David E. Schultz and S.J. Joshi, eds. The Unabridged Devil’s Dictionary. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 2000. 

The Algonquin Wits: Robert Benchley

“Coming out of a midtown restaurant, Benchley spotted a uniformed man at the door. ‘Would you get us a taxi, please,’ he asked the man. ‘I’m sorry,’ the man said coldly, ‘I happen to be a rear admiral in the United States Navy.’ ‘All right then,’ said Benchley, ‘us a battleship.'”

Excerpted from: Drennan, Robert E., ed. The Algonquin Wits. New York: Kensington, 1985.