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 :: 1842-1914, American Author, Editor, Journalist, ''The Devil's Dictionary''

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Eulogy. Praise of a person who has either the advantages of wealth and power, or the consideration to be dead.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Praise]

 

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Pray. To ask the laws of the universe to be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Prayer]

 

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A prejudice is a vagrant opinion without visible means of support.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Prejudice]

 

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The are and practice of selling one's credibility for future delivery.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Prophecy]

 

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Nominee. A modest gentleman shrinking from the distinction of private life and diligently seeking the honorable obscurity of public office.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Public Office]

 

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The act of repeating erroneously the words of another.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Quotations]

 

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Insurrection. An unsuccessful revolution; disaffection's failure to substitute misrule for bad government.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Rebellion]

 

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Religion. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Religion]

 

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Revolution is an abrupt change in the form of misgovernment.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Revolutions and Revolutionaries]

 

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Saint. A dead sinner revised and edited.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Saints]

 

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Erudition. Dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Scholars and Scholarship]

 

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Impiety. Your irreverence toward my deity.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Irreverence]

 

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Witticism. A sharp and clever remark, usually quoted and seldom noted; what the Philistine is pleased to call a ''joke.''
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Jokes and Jokers]

 

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Knowledge is the small part of ignorance that we arrange and classify.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Knowledge]

 

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Laughter -- An interior convulsion, producing a distortion of the features and accompanied by inarticulate noises. It is infectious and, though intermittent, incurable.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Laughter]

 

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Litigant. A person about to give up his skin for the hope of retaining his bones.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Law Suits]

 

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Laziness. Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Laziness]

 

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Learning. The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Learning]

 

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Life. A spiritual pickle preserving the body from decay.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Life and Living]

 

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A temporary insanity curable by marriage.
~ Ambrose Bierce - [Love]

 

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