Ambrose Bierce Quotes

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.

Politics, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.

Politeness, n. The most acceptable hypocrisy.

Laurel, n. The “laurus”, a vegetable dedicated to Apollo, and formerly defoliated to wreathe the brows of victors and such poets as had influence at court. (“Vide supra.”)

Rimer, n. A poet regarded with indifference or disesteem.

Rime, n. Agreeing sounds in the terminals of verse, mostly bad. The verses themselves, as distinguished from prose, mostly dull. Usually (and wickedly) spelled “rhyme.”

Poetry, n. A form of expression peculiar to the Land beyond the Magazines.

Laureate, adj. Crowned with leaves of the laurel. In England the Poet Laureate is an officer of the sovereign’s court, acting as dancing skeleton at every royal feast and singing-mute at every royal funeral.

Pleasure, n. The least hateful form of dejection.

Debauchee, n. One who has so earnestly pursued pleasure that he has had the misfortune to overtake it.