Ambrose Bierce (Writer)

#1914 Ambrose Bierce

Egotist, n. A person of low taste, more interested in himself than in me. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about self
#1915 Ambrose Bierce

Idiot, n. A member of a large and powerful tribe whose influence in human affairs has always been dominant and controlling. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about power
#1916 Ambrose Bierce

Mark how my fame rings out from zone to zone: A thousand critics shouting: "He's unknown!" .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about fame
#1917 Ambrose Bierce

The fact that boys are allowed to exist at all is evidence of remarkable Christian forbearance among men--were it not for a mawkish humanitarianism, coupled with imperfect digestive powers, we should devour our young, as Nature intended. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about power
#1918 Ambrose Bierce

Peyton Fahrquhar was dead; his body, with a broken neck, swung gently from side to side beneath the timbers of the Owl Creek bridge. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about body
#1919 Ambrose Bierce

True, more than a half of the green graves in the Grafton cemetery are marked "Unknown," and sometimes it occurs that one thinks of the contradiction involved in "honoring the memory" of him of whom no memory remains to honor; but the attempt seems to do no great harm to the living, even to the logical. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about time
#1920 Ambrose Bierce

This is a simple story of a battle; such a tale as may be told by a soldier who is no writer to a reader who is no soldier. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about writer
#1921 Ambrose Bierce

An army's bravest men are its cowards. The death which they would not meet at the hands of the enemy they will meet at the hands of their officers, with never a flinching. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about death
#1922 Ambrose Bierce

Hidden in hollows and behind clumps of rank brambles were large tents, dimly lighted with candles, but looking comfortable. The kind of comfort they supplied was indicated by pairs of men entering and reappearing, bearing litters; by low moans from within and by long rows of dead with covered faces outside. These tents were constantly receiving the wounded, yet were never full; they were continually ejecting the dead, yet were never empty. It was as if the helpless had been carried in and murdered, that they might not hamper those whose business it was to fall to-morrow. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about men
#1924 Ambrose Bierce

Riven and torn with cannon-shot, the trunks of the trees protruded bunches of splinters like hands, the fingers above the wound interlacing with those below. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about wit
#1925 Ambrose Bierce

First published for letters A-L as The Cynic's Word Book (1906) .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about book
#1926 Ambrose Bierce

Ocean, n. A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man — who has no gills. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about world
#1927 Ambrose Bierce

, n. The chief of Grecian gods, adored by the Romans asand by the modern Americans as God, Gold, Mob and Dog. Some explorers who have touched upon the shores of America, and one who professes to have penetrated a considerable distance to the interior, have thought that these four names stand for as many distinct deities, but in his monumental work on Surviving Faiths, Frumpp insists that the natives are monotheists, each having no other god than himself, whom he worships under many sacred names. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about god
#1928 Ambrose Bierce

Absent, adj. Peculiarly exposed to the tooth of detraction; vilifed; hopelessly in the wrong; superseded in the consideration and affection of another. To men a man is but a mind. Who cares What face he carries or what form he wears? But woman's body is the woman. O, Stay thou, my sweetheart, and do never go, But heed the warning words the sage hath said: A woman absent is a woman dead. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about life
#1929 Ambrose Bierce

Abstainer, n. A weak person who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure. A total abstainer is one who abstains from everything but abstention, and especially from inactivity in the affairs of others. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about self
#1930 Ambrose Bierce

Absurdity, n. A statement or belief manifestly inconsistent with one's own opinion. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about belief
#1931 Ambrose Bierce

Accord, n. Harmony. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about harmony
#1932 Ambrose Bierce

Accordion, n. An instrument in harmony with the sentiments of an assassin. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about time
#1933 Ambrose Bierce

Acquaintance, n. A person whom we know well enough to borrow from, but not well enough to lend to. A degree of friendship called slight when its object is poor or obscure, and intimate when he is rich or famous .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about friendship
#1934 Ambrose Bierce

Admiration, n. Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to ourselves. .

Ambrose Bierce
#1935 Ambrose Bierce

Advice, n. The smallest current coin. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about advice
#1936 Ambrose Bierce

Alone, adj. In bad company. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about bad
#1937 Ambrose Bierce

Amnesty, n. The state’s magnaminity to those offenders whom it would be too expensive to punish. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about end
#1938 Ambrose Bierce

Apologize, v. To lay the foundation for a future offense. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about future
#1939 Ambrose Bierce

Bacchus, n. A convenient deity invented by the ancients as an excuse for getting drunk. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about drunk
#1940 Ambrose Bierce

Back, n. That part of your friend which it is your privilege to contemplate in your adversity. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about art
#1941 Ambrose Bierce

Barometer, n. An ingenious instrument which indicates what kind of weather we are having. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about men
#1942 Ambrose Bierce

Birth, n. The first and direst of all disasters. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about birth
#1943 Ambrose Bierce

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

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about you
#1944 Ambrose Bierce

Boundary, n. In political geography, an imaginary line between two nations, separating the imaginary rights of one from the imaginary rights of the other. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about political
#1945 Ambrose Bierce

Brain, n. An apparatus with which we think that we think... In our civilization, and under our republican form of government, intelligence is so highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of office. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about intelligence
#1946 Ambrose Bierce

Bride, n. A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about happiness
#1947 Ambrose Bierce

Cabbage, n. A familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about as large and wise as a man's head. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about man
#1948 Ambrose Bierce

Callous, adj. Gifted with great fortitude to bear the evils afflicting another. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about evil
#1949 Ambrose Bierce

Cannon, n. An instrument employed in the rectification of national boundaries. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about men
#1950 Ambrose Bierce

Cartesian, adj. Relating to , a famous philosopher, author of the celebrated dictum, Cogito ergo sum -- whereby he was pleased to suppose he demonstrated the reality of human existence. The dictum might be improved, however, thus: Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum -- "I think that I think, therefore I think that I am;" as close an approach to certainty as any philosopher has yet made. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about art
#1951 Ambrose Bierce

Cat, n. A soft, indestructible automaton provided by nature to be kicked when things go wrong in the domestic circle. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about nature
#1952 Ambrose Bierce

Christian, n. One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. One who follows the teachings of Christ so long as they are not inconsistent with a life of sin. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about life
#1953 Ambrose Bierce

Circus, n. A place where horses, ponies and elephants are permitted to see men, women and children acting the fool. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about women
#1954 Ambrose Bierce

Clarionet, n. An instrument of torture operated by a person with cotton in his ears. There are two instruments that are worse than a clarionet -- two clarionets. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about men
#1955 Ambrose Bierce

Congratulation, n. The civility of envy. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about envy
#1956 Ambrose Bierce

Conservative, n. A statesman enamored of existing evils, as opposed to a Liberal, who wants to replace them with others. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about evil
#1957 Ambrose Bierce

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

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about responsibility
#1958 Ambrose Bierce

Cynic, n. A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be. Hence the custom among the Scythians of plucking out a cynic's eyes to improve his vision. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about vision
#1959 Ambrose Bierce

Dawn, n. The time when men of reason go to bed. Certain old men prefer to rise at about that time, taking a cold bath and a long walk with an empty stomach, and otherwise mortifying the flesh. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about time
#1960 Ambrose Bierce

Defenceless, adj. Unable to attack. .

Ambrose Bierce
#1961 Ambrose Bierce

Dictionary, n. A malevolent literary device for cramping the growth of a language and making it hard and inelastic. This dictionary, however, is a most useful work. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about work
#1962 Ambrose Bierce

Diplomacy, n. The patriotic art of lying for one's country. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about art
#1963 Ambrose Bierce

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

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about understanding
#1965 Ambrose Bierce

Electricity, n. The cause of all natural phenomena not known to be caused by something else. It is the same thing as lightning, and its famous attempt to strike Dr. Franklin is one of the most picturesque incidents in that great and good man's career. .

Ambrose Bierce Quotes about men

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