The Lost Art of Insult

"He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire."
-- Winston Churchill


"A modest little person, with much to be modest about."
-- Winston Churchill


"I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great
pleasure."
-- Clarence Darrow


"He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the
dictionary."
-- William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway)


"Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?"
-- Ernest Hemingway (about William Faulkner)


"Thank you for sending me a copy of your book; I'll waste no time reading
it."
-- Moses Hadas


"He can compress the most words into the smallest idea of any man I know."
-- Abraham Lincoln


"I've had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn't it."
-- Groucho Marx


"I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved
of it."
-- Mark Twain


"He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends."
-- Oscar Wilde


"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a
friend.... if you have one."
-- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill


"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second... if there is one."
-- Winston Churchill, in response.


"I feel so miserable without you; it's almost like having you here."
-- Stephen Bishop


"He is a self-made man and worships his creator."
-- John Bright


"I've just learned about his illness. Let's hope it's nothing trivial."
-- Irvin S. Cobb


"He is not only dull himself, he is the cause of dullness in others."
-- Samuel Johnson


"He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up."
-- Paul Keating


"He had delusions of adequacy."
-- Walter Kerr


"There's nothing wrong with you that reincarnation won't cure."
-- Jack E. Leonard


"He has the attention span of a lightning bolt."
-- Robert Redford


"They never open their mouths without subtracting from the sum of human
knowledge ."
-- Thomas Brackett Reed


"He inherited some good instincts from his Quaker forebears, but by diligent hard work, he overcame them."
-- James Reston (about Richard Nixon)


"In order to avoid being called a flirt, she always yielded easily."
-- Charles, Count Talleyrand


"He loves nature in spite of what it did to him."
-- Forrest Tucker


"Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?"
-- Mark Twain

"His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork."
-- Mae West


"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."
-- Oscar Wilde


"He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts... for support rather
than illumination."
-- Andrew Lang (1844-1912)


"He has Van Gogh's ear for music."
-- Billy Wilder