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Curiosity, n. An objectionable quality of the female mind.
by Ambrose Bierce

Curiosity, n. An objectionable quality of the female mind.
The desire to know whether or not a woman is cursed
with curiosity is one of the most active and insatiable
passions of the masculine soul.
- Ambrose Bierce

Learning, n. The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious.
- Ambrose Bierce

Corporation: An ingenious device for obtaining profit
without individual responsibility.
- Ambrose Bierce

Bride: A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her.
- Ambrose Bierce

 

Academe, n.: An ancient school where morality and philosophy were taught.
Academy, n.: A modern school where football is taught.
- Ambrose Bierce

Lawsuit: A machine which you go into as a pig and come out of as a sausage.
- Ambrose Bierce

Beauty, n: the power by which a woman charms a lover and terrifies a husband.
- Ambrose Bierce

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Photograph: a picture painted by the sun without instruction in art.
- Ambrose Bierce

Day, n. A period of twenty-four hours, mostly misspent.
- Ambrose Bierce

Love: A temporary insanity curable by marriage.
- Ambrose Bierce

Telephone, n. An invention of the devil which abrogates
some of the advantages of making a disagreeable person keep his distance.
- Ambrose Bierce

Success is the one unpardonable sin against our fellows.
- Ambrose Bierce

Inventor: A person who makes an ingenious arrangement of wheels,
levers and springs, and believes it civilization.
- Ambrose Bierce

Mad, adj.
Affected with a high degree of intellectual independence.
- Ambrose Bierce

Vote: the instrument and symbol of a freeman's power
to make a fool of himself and a wreck of his country.
- Ambrose Bierce

The gambling known as business looks with austere disfavor
upon the business known as gambling.
- Ambrose Bierce

Painting, n.: The art of protecting flat surfaces from the weather,
and exposing them to the critic.
- Ambrose Bierce

Conservative, n: A statesman who is enamored of existing evils,
as distinguished from the Liberal who wishes to replace them with others.
- Ambrose Bierce

Sweater, n.: garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly.
- Ambrose Bierce

Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man -
who has no gills.
- Ambrose Bierce

Education, n.: That which discloses to the wise and
disguises from the foolish their lack of understanding.
- Ambrose Bierce

Marriage, n: the state or condition of a community consisting of a master,
a mistress, and two slaves, making in all,
two.
- Ambrose Bierce

Experience - the wisdom that enables us to recognise
in an undesirable old acquaintance the folly that we have already embraced.
- Ambrose Bierce

Politics: A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.
The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.
- Ambrose Bierce

History is an account, mostly false,
of events,
mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers,
mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.
- Ambrose Bierce

Wit - the salt with which the American humorist spoils
his intellectual cookery by leaving it out.
- Ambrose Bierce

Alien - an American sovereign in his probationary state.
- Ambrose Bierce

Patriotism.
Combustible rubbish ready to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name.
- Ambrose Bierce

To be positive is to be mistaken at the top of one's voice.
- Ambrose Bierce

Brain: an apparatus with which we think we think.
- Ambrose Bierce

When you doubt, abstain.
- Ambrose Bierce

Bore, n. A person who talks when you wish him to listen.
- Ambrose Bierce

Saint: A dead sinner revised and edited.
- Ambrose Bierce

Debt, n. An ingenious substitute for the chain and whip of the slavedriver.
- Ambrose Bierce

Litigant.
A person about to give up his skin for the hope of retaining his bones.
- Ambrose Bierce

Enthusiasm - a distemper of youth, curable by small
doses of repentance in connection with outward applications of experience.
- Ambrose Bierce

Eulogy.
Praise of a person who has either the advantages of wealth and power,
or the consideration to be dead.
- Ambrose Bierce

Liberty: One of Imagination's most precious possessions.
- Ambrose Bierce

Abscond - to move in a mysterious way,
commonly with the property of another.
- Ambrose Bierce

Optimism - the doctrine or belief that everything is beautiful,
including what is ugly.
- Ambrose Bierce

Ability is commonly found to consist mainly in a high degree of solemnity.
- Ambrose Bierce

Dawn: When men of reason go to bed.
- Ambrose Bierce

Clairvoyant, n.: A person, commonly a woman,
who has the power of seeing that which is invisible to her patron -
namely,
that he is a blockhead.
- Ambrose Bierce

Ardor, n. The quality that distinguishes love without knowledge.
- Ambrose Bierce

Incompatibility.
In matrimony a similarity of tastes,
particularly the taste for domination.
- Ambrose Bierce

Women in love are less ashamed than men.
They have less to be ashamed of.
- Ambrose Bierce

Revolution, n. In politics, an abrupt change in the form of misgovernment.
- Ambrose Bierce

Laziness.
Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.
- Ambrose Bierce

Divorce: a resumption of diplomatic relations and rectification of boundaries.
- Ambrose Bierce

Positive, adj.: Mistaken at the top of one's voice.
- Ambrose Bierce

Prejudice - a vagrant opinion without visible means of support.
- Ambrose Bierce

Cynic, n: a blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are,
not as they ought to be.
- Ambrose Bierce

Philosophy: A route of many roads leading from nowhere to nothing.
- Ambrose Bierce

Erudition - dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.
- Ambrose Bierce

Childhood: the period of human life intermediate between
the idiocy of infancy and the folly of youth -
two removes from the sin of manhood and three from the remorse of age.
- Ambrose Bierce

Politeness, n: The most acceptable hypocrisy.
- Ambrose Bierce

I never said all Democrats were saloonkeepers.
What I said was that all saloonkeepers are Democrats.
- Ambrose Bierce

Famous, adj.: Conspicuously miserable.
- Ambrose Bierce

Impiety.
Your irreverence toward my deity.
- Ambrose Bierce

I believe we shall come to care about people less and less.
The more people one knows the easier it becomes to replace them.
It's one of the curses of London.
- Ambrose Bierce

Quotation, n: The act of repeating erroneously the words of another.
- Ambrose Bierce

Acquaintance.
A person whom we know well enough to borrow from,
but not well enough to lend to.
- Ambrose Bierce

What is a democrat? One who believes that the republicans have ruined the country.
What is a republican? One who believes that the democrats would ruin the country.
- Ambrose Bierce

Death is not the end.
There remains the litigation over the estate.
- Ambrose Bierce

All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher.
- Ambrose Bierce

Forgetfulness - a gift of God bestowed upon debtors
in compensation for their destitution of conscience.
- Ambrose Bierce

Impartial - unable to perceive any promise of personal
advantage from espousing either side of a controversy.
- Ambrose Bierce

We submit to the majority because we have to.
But we are not compelled to call our attitude of subjection a posture of respect.
- Ambrose Bierce

Cabbage: a familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about
as large and wise as a man's head.
- Ambrose Bierce

Bigot: One who is obstinately and zealously attached
to an opinion that you do not entertain.
- Ambrose Bierce

Absence blots people out.
We really have no absent friends.
- Ambrose Bierce


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