''A man is known by the company he organizes.''
''History. An account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers, mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.''
''Pray. To ask the laws of the universe to be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy.''
''Age. That period of life in which we compound for the vices that remain by reviling those we have no longer the vigor to commit.''
''Nominee. A modest gentleman shrinking from the distinction of private life and diligently seeking the honorable obscurity of public office.''
''Bore. A person who talks when you wish him to listen.''
''I'd never set foot in San Francisco. Of all the Sodoms and Gomorrahs in our modern world, it is the worst. There are not 10 righteous (and courageous) men there. It needs another quake, another whiff of fire—and—more than all else—a steady trade wind of grapeshot.... That moral penal colony of the world.''
''Alliance. In international politics, the union of two thieves who have their hands so deeply inserted in each other's pockets that they cannot separately plunder a third.''
''Patriotism. Combustible rubbish ready to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name.''
''Patience. A minor form of despair disguised as a virtue.''
''Alien. An American sovereign in his probationary state.''
''Admiration. Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to ourselves.''
''Impiety. Your irreverence toward my deity.''
''Education. That which discloses to the wise and disguises from the foolish their lack of understanding.''
''Backbite. To "speak of a man as you find him" when he can't find you.''
''Compromise. Such an adjustment of conflicting interests as gives each adversary the satisfaction of thinking he has got what he ought not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his due.''
''Philanthropist. A rich (and usually bald) old gentleman who has trained himself to grin while his conscience is picking his pocket.''
''Corporation. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility.''
''Incompatibility. In matrimony a similarity of tastes, particularly the taste for domination.''
''Dog. A kind of additional or subsidiary Deity designed to catch the overflow and surplus of the world's worship.''
''Religion. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable.''
''Ambition. An overmastering desire to be vilified by enemies while living and made ridiculous by friends when dead.''
''Litigant. A person about to give up his skin for the hope of retaining his bones.''
''Heaven lies about us in our infancy ... and the world begins lying about us pretty soon afterward.''
''POLITICIAN, n. An eel in the fundamental mud upon which the superstructure of organized society is reared. When he wriggles he mistakes the agitation of his tail for the trembling of the edifice. As compared with the statesman, he suffers the disadvantage of being alive.''
''Edible. Good to eat and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm.''
''Accuse. To affirm another's guilt or unworth; most commonly as a justification of ourselves for having wronged him.''
''Insurance. An ingenious modern game of chance in which the player is permitted to enjoy the comfortable conviction that he is beating the man who keeps the table.''
''Acquaintance. A person whom we know well enough to borrow from, but not well enough to lend to.''
''Marriage. The state or condition of a community consisting of a master, a mistress and two slaves, making in all, two.''
''Eulogy. Praise of a person who has either the advantages of wealth and power, or the consideration to be dead.''
''Impartial. Unable to perceive any promise of personal advantage from espousing either side of a controversy.''
''Consult. To seek another's approval of a course already decided on.''
''Destiny. A tyrant's authority for crime and a fool's excuse for failure.''
''Insurrection. An unsuccessful revolution; disaffection's failure to substitute misrule for bad government.''
''Friendless. Having no favors to bestow. Destitute of fortune. Addicted to utterance of truth and common sense.''
''Architect. One who drafts a plan of your house, and plans a draft of your money.''
''Admiral. That part of a warship which does the talking while the figurehead does the thinking.''
''Opiate. An unlocked door in the prison of Identity. It leads into the jail yard.''
''Women in love are less ashamed than men. They have less to be ashamed of.''
''Wit. The salt with which the American humorist spoils his intellectual cookery by leaving it out.''
''Irreligion. The principal one of the great faiths of the world.''
''To be positive. To be mistaken at the top of one's voice.''
''Enthusiasm. A distemper of youth, curable by small doses of repentance in connection with outward applications of experience.''
''Prejudice. A vagrant opinion without visible means of support.''
''Abstainer. A weak man who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure.''
''Beauty. The power by which a woman charms a lover and terrifies a husband.''
''Future. That period of time in which our affairs prosper, our friends are true and our happiness is assured.''
''Deliberation. The act of examining one's bread to determine which side it is buttered on.''
''Saint. A dead sinner revised and edited.''
''Absurdity. A statement or belief manifestly inconsistent with one's own opinion.''
''Calamities are of two kinds: misfortune to ourselves, and good fortune to others.''
''Genealogy. An account of one's descent from an ancestor who did not particularly care to trace his own.''
''Faith. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.''
''Optimism. The doctrine or belief that everything is beautiful, including what is ugly.''
''Laziness. Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.''
''Consul. In American politics, a person who having failed to secure an office from the people is given one by the Administration on condition that he leave the country.''
''Erudition. Dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.''
''Appeal. In law, to put the dice into the box for another throw.''
''Duty. That which sternly impels us in the direction of profit, along the line of desire.''
''The covers of this book are too far apart.''
''Egotist. A person of low taste, more interested in himself than me.''
''Woman absent is woman dead.''
''Cynic. A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be.''
''Life. A spiritual pickle preserving the body from decay.''
''Abscond. To "move" in a mysterious way, commonly with the property of another.''
''Creditor. One of a tribe of savages dwelling beyond the Financial Straits and dreaded for their desolating incursions.''
''Trial. A formal inquiry designed to prove and put upon record the blameless characters of judges, advocates and jurors.''
''Witticism. A sharp and clever remark, usually quoted and seldom noted; what the Philistine is pleased to call a "joke."''
''Sabbath. A weekly festival having its origin in the fact that God made the world in six days and was arrested on the seventh.''
''Conservative. A statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from a Liberal, who wishes to replace them with others.''
''Bride. A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her.''
''Convent. A place of retirement for women who wish for leisure to meditate upon the sin of idleness.''
''Forgetfulness. A gift of God bestowed upon debtors in compensation for their destitution of conscience.''
''Experience. The wisdom that enables us to recognise in an undesirable old acquaintance the folly that we have already embraced.''
''Learning. The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious.''
''Historian. A broad-gauge gossip.''
''Confidante. One entrusted by A with the secrets of B confided to herself by C.''
''Divorce. A resumption of diplomatic relations and rectification of boundaries.''
''Fidelity. A virtue peculiar to those who are about to be betrayed.''
''To apologize is to lay the foundation for a future offense.''