Quotations…..by Mark Twain

This series on Quotations started in the May 2007 issue of the Riverside Review. Back then it was stated that in a dictionary containing 25,000 Quotations only the Bible and William Shakespeare’s sayings appeared more often than the sayings of Mark Twain. Choosing the best of Twain’s sayings is a challenge for all are inspirational and worth repeating. Nearly every page of every book written by this famous author contains some thought-provoking statement. When Twain was on his lecture tour, people would attend in great numbers just to hear what he had to say. Listed below are only a few quotations categorized under the letter “A” and taken from just one computer web site.

Adultery - Well, it was touching to see the queen blush and smile, and look embarrassed and happy, and fling furtive glances at Sir Launcelot that would have got him shot in Arkansas, to a dead certainty. - Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court

Age - Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen. - Autobiography with Letters, William L. Phelps

Ambition - When I was a boy, there was but one permanent ambition among my comrades in our village on the west bank of the Mississippi River. That was, to be a steam boatman. We had transient ambitions of other sorts, but they were only transient. When a circus came and went, it left us all burning to become clowns; the first negro minstrel show that came to our section left us all suffering to try that kind of life; now and then we had a hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be pirates. These ambitions faded out, each in its turn; but the ambition to be a steam boatman always remained. - Life on the Mississippi

Anger - When angry count four; when very angry, swear. - Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar

Aristocracy - Like all the other nations, we worship money and the possessors of it - they being our aristocracy, and we have to have one. We like to read about rich people in the papers; the papers know it, and they do their best to keep this appetite liberally fed. - Mark Twain in Eruption

Art - Criticism is a queer thing. If I print "She was stark naked"--& then proceeded to describe her person in detail, what critic would not howl?--who would venture to leave the book on a parlor table. -- But the artist does this & all ages gather around & look & talk & point. - Notebook #18, Feb. - Sept. 1879

Autobiography - An autobiography that leaves out the little things and enumerates only the big ones is no proper picture of the man's life at all; his life consists of his feelings and his interests, with here and there an incident apparently big or little to hang the feelings on. - Mark Twain's Autobiography
The above 7 subjects were chosen from 54 listed under the letter “A”. Furthermore, each subject contained at least 5 other quotations, making a total of 270 saying under the first letter in the alphabet. Multiply this by 26 letters and you have some idea of the magnitude of Mark Twain’s sayings that are available at just one web site. To view this particular web site, go to http://www.twainquotes.com/quotesatoz.html.   It is interesting to note that according to “Goggle” there are 132,000 other web sites containing information on Mark Twain.