American Writer, Humorist
Mark Twain, pen name of Samuel Langhorne Clemens
American Writer, Humorist
I never felt so fervently thankful, so soothed, so tranquil, so filled with a blessed peace, as I did yesterday when I learned that Michael Angelo was dead.
I saw a startling sight today, a politician with his hands in his own pockets.
I was born intelligent, education ruined me.
I wonder how much it would take to buy a soap bubble, if there were only one in the world.
I have too much respect for the truth to drag it out on every trifling occasion.
I never made a success of a lecture delivered in a church yet. People are afraid to laugh in a church. They can't be made to do it in any possible way.
I shall never use profanity except in discussing house rent and taxes.
I was born lazy. I am no lazier now than I was forty years ago, but that is because I reached the limit forty years ago. You can't go beyond possibility.
I wonder if God created man because He was disappointed with the monkey.
I can help anyone get anything they want out of life. The only problem is that I can't find anyone who knows what they want.
I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.
I felt so lonesome I most wished I was dead. The stars were shining, and the leaves rustled in the woods ever so mournful; and I heard an owl, away off, who-whooing about somebody that was dead, and a whippowill and a dog crying about somebody that was going to die;
I have found solace in profanity unexcelled even by prayer.
I can live for two months on a good compliment.
I do not like an injurious lie, except when it injures somebody else.
I find that principles have no real force except when one is well fed.
I have made it a rule never to smoke more than one cigar at a time. It has always been my rule never to smoke when asleep, and never to refrain when awake.
I can teach anybody how to get what they want out of life. The problem is that I can't find anybody who can tell me what they want.
I do not like work even when someone else does it.
I find that the further I go back, the better things were, whether they happened or not.
I have my values, and if you don't like them, well I've got some others.
I cannot keep from talking, even at the risk of being instructive.
I do not take any credit to my better-balanced head because I never went crazy on Presbyterianism. We go too slow for that. You never see us ranting and shouting and tearing up the ground, You never heard of a Presbyterian going crazy on religion. Notice us, and you will see how we do. We get up of a Sunday morning and put on the best harness we have got and trip cheerfully down town; we subside into solemnity and enter the church; we stand up and duck our heads and bear down on a hymn book propped on the pew in front when the minister prays; we stand up again while our hired choir are singing, and look in the hymn book and check off the verses to see that they don't shirk any of the stanzas; we sit silent and grave while the minister is preaching, and count the waterfalls and bonnets furtively, and catch flies; we grab our hats and bonnets when the benediction is begun; when it is finished, we shove, so to speak. No frenzy, no fanaticism --no skirmishing; everything perfectly serene. You never see any of us Presbyterians getting in a sweat about religion and trying to massacre the neighbors. Let us all be content with the tried and safe old regular religions, and take no chances on wildcat.
I find that, as a rule, when a thing is a wonder to us it is not because of what we see in it, but because of what others have seen in it. We get almost all our wonders at second hand.
I have never heard enough classical music to be able to enjoy it; and the simple truth is, I detest it. Not mildly, but will all my heart. To me an opera is the very climax and cap-stone of the absurd, the fantastic the unjustifiable. I hate the very name of opera - partly because of the nights of suffering I have endured in its presence, and partly because I want to love it and can't.