Author: Ambrose Bierce

Critic: One who boasts of being “hard to please” because nobody tries to please him. 

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Pessimism: A philosophy forced upon the convictions of the observer by the disheartening prevalence of the optimist with his scarecrow hope and his unsightly smile.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Congress: A body of men who meet to repeal laws.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Dentist: A prestidigitator who, putting metal into your mouth, pulls coins out of your pocket.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Telephone: An invention of the devil which abrogates some of the advantages of making a disagreeable person keep his distance.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Evangelist: A bearer of good tidings who gives us the good news and assures us of our own salvation and damnation of our neighbors.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Infidel: In New York, one who does not believe in the Christian religion; in Constantinople, one who does.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Ambidextrous: Able to pick with equal skill a right-hand pocket or a left.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusion is called a philosopher.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Physician: One upon whom we set our hopes when ill and our dogs when well.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Delegation: In American politics, an article of merchandise that comes in sets.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Apologize: To lay the foundation for a future offence.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Grave: A place in which the dead are laid to await the coming of the medical student.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Oppose: To assist with obstructions and objections.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

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

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist

Quotation: The act of repeating erroneously the words of another.

(1842 – 1914) author & satirist
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