Mark Twain Quotes

Welcome to Mark Twain Quotes. Here you will find famous quotes and quotations by Mark Twain. 

Mark Twain Quotes

Humor is mankind's greatest blessing.

Buy land, they're not making it anymore.

When in doubt tell the truth.

We are all alike, on the inside.

Golf is a good walk spoiled.

Familiarity breeds contempt - and children.

I make it a rule never to smoke while I'm sleeping.

Name the greatest of all inventors. Accident.

Man was made at the end of the week's work when God was tired.

When you fish for love, bait with your heart, not your brain. 

Mark Twain Quotes

When angry, count to four; when very angry, swear.

Action speaks louder than words but not nearly as often.

It is better to have old second-hand diamonds than none at all.

'Classic.' A book which people praise and don't read.

Put all your eggs in one basket - and watch that basket!

When I was younger I could remember anything, whether it happened or not.

Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.

Thunder is good, thunder is impressive; but it is lightning that does the work.

A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.

Training is everything. Cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education.

Mark Twain Quotes

I was gratified to be able to answer promptly, and I did. I said I didn't know.

Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.

Let us live so that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sor

Thousands of geniuses live and die undiscovered - either by themselves or by others.

What a good thing Adam had. When he said a good thing he knew nobody had said it before.

To refuse awards is another way of accepting them with more noise than is normal.

The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days of the year.

What, sir, would the people of the earth be without woman? They would be scarce, sir, almighty scarce.

When your friends begin to flatter you on how young you look, it's a sure sign you're getting old.

Why is it that we rejoice at a birth and grieve at a funeral? It is because we are not the person involved.

Mark Twain Quotes

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.

Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today.

Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.

Do not put off till tomorrow what can be put off till day-after-tomorrow just as well.

Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest.

Mark Twain Quotes

Don't let schooling interfere with your education.

Don't tell fish stories where the people know you; but particularly, don't tell them where they know the fish.

Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned.

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable.

Mark Twain Quotes

Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.

Giving up smoking is the easiest thing in the world. I know because I've done it thousands of times.

Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.

Honesty is the best policy - when there is money in it.

I have made it a rule never to smoke more that one cigar at a time.

Mark Twain Quotes

I never let schooling interfere with my education.

Ideally a book would have no order to it, and the reader would have to discover his own.

If it's your job to eat a frog, it's best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it's your job to eat two frogs, it's best to eat the biggest one first.

If the world comes to an end, I want to be in Cincinnati. Everything comes there ten years later.

It was wonderful to find America, but it would have been more wonderful to miss it.

Mark Twain Quotes

It's no wonder that truth is stranger than fiction. Fiction has to make sense.ry.

Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.

My books are like water; those of the great geniuses are wine. (Fortunately) everybody drinks water.

Never put off till tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.

Mark Twain Quotes

Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits.

One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives.

Prophesy is a good line of business, but it is full of risks.

The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.

The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.

Mark Twain Quotes

The man who is a pessimist before 48 knows too much; if he is an optimist after it, he knows too little.

The more things are forbidden, the more popular they become.

The more you explain it, the more I don't understand it.

The most interesting information comes from children, for they tell all they know and then stop.

The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don't want, drink what you don't like, and do what you'd rather not.

Mark Twain Quotes

The radical invents the views. When he has worn them out the conservative adopts them.

The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.

There are basically two types of people. People who accomplish things, and people who claim to have accomplished things. The first group is less crowded.

There is no sadder sight than a young pessimist.

To be good is noble; but to show others how to be good is nobler and no trouble.

Mark Twain Quotes

Truth is the most valuable thing we have. Let us economize it.

What is the difference between a taxidermist and a tax collector? The taxidermist takes only your skin.

You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.

A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.

A man is never more truthful than when he acknowledges himself a liar.

Mark Twain Quotes

A man's character may be learned from the adjectives which he habitually uses in conversation.

A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read.

A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds.

A round man cannot be expected to fit in a square hole right away. He must have time to modify his shape.

After a few months’ acquaintance with European “coffee,” one’s mind weakens, and his faith with it, and he begins to wonder if the rich beverage of home, with its clotted layer of yellow cream on top of it, is not a mere dream after all, and a thing which never existed.

Mark Twain Quotes

Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.

All generalizations are false, including this one.

All you need is ignorance and confidence and the success is sure.

Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.

Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.

Mark Twain Quotes

All right, then, I'll go to hell.

Any emotion, if it is sincere, is involuntary.

As an example to others, and not that I care for moderation myself, it has always been my rule never to smoke when asleep, and never to refrain from smoking when awake.

Be careless in your dress if you will, but keep a tidy soul.

Better a broken promise than none at all.

Mark Twain Quotes

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.

Biographies are but the clothes and buttons of the man. The biography of the man himself cannot be written.

But who prays for Satan? Who, in eighteen centuries, has had the common humanity to pray for the one sinner that needed it most?

By trying we can easily endure adversity. Another man's, I mean.

Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities.

Mark Twain Quotes

Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get.

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.

Denial ain't just a river in Egypt.

Do the thing you fear most and the death of fear is certain.

Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.

Mark Twain Quotes

Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone, you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.

Don't say the old lady screamed. Bring her on and let her scream.

Drag your thoughts away from your troubles... by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it.

Everything has its limit - iron ore cannot be educated into gold.

Everything human is pathetic. The secret source of humor itself is not joy but sorrow. There is no humor in heaven.

Mark Twain Quotes

Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.

Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't.

George Washington, as a boy, was ignorant of the commonest accomplishments of youth. He could not even lie.

Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.

Good breeding consists in concealing how much we think of ourselves and how little we think of the other person.

Mark Twain Quotes

Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.

Government is merely a servant – merely a temporary servant; it cannot be its prerogative to determine what is right and what is wrong, and decide who is a patriot and who isn’t. Its function is to obey orders, not originate them.

Grief can take care if itself, but to get the full value of a joy you must have somebody to divide it with.

He is now rising from affluence to poverty.

Humor must not professedly teach and it must not professedly preach, but it must do both if it would live forever.

Mark Twain Quotes

I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.

I can live for two months on a good compliment.

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

I don't give a damn for a man that can only spell a word one way.

I don't like to commit myself about heaven and hell - you see, I have friends in both places.

Mark Twain Quotes

I have been complimented many times and they always embarrass me; I always feel that they have not said enough.

I have been studying the traits and dispositions of the "lower animals" (so called) and contrasting them with the traits and dispositions of man. I find the result humiliating to me.

I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.

I have never taken any exercise except sleeping and resting.

I must have a prodigious quantity of mind; it takes me as much as a week sometimes to make it up.

Mark Twain Quotes

I was seldom able to see an opportunity until it had ceased to be one.

If man could be crossed with the cat, it would improve man but deteriorate the cat.

If you hold a cat by the tail you learn things you cannot learn any other way.

If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

In order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to obtain.

Mark Twain Quotes

In the Spring, I have counted 136 different kinds of weather inside of 24 hours.

It ain't those parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand.

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native criminal class except Congress.

It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not deserve them.

Mark Twain Quotes

It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.

It is better to take what does not belong to you than to let it lie around neglected.

It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them.

It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare.

It is easier to stay out than get out.

Mark Twain Quotes

It is just like man's vanity and impertinence to call an animal dumb because it is dumb to his dull perceptions.

It is not best that we should all think alike; it is a difference of opinion that makes horse races.

It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.

It were not best that we should all think alike; it is difference of opinion that makes horse races.

It's good sportsmanship to not pick up lost golf balls while they are still rolling.

Mark Twain Quotes

It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

I've never let my school interfere with my education.

Laws control the lesser man... Right conduct controls the greater one.

Let us make a special effort to stop communicating with each other, so we can have some conversation.

Let us not be too particular; it is better to have old secondhand diamonds than none at all.

Mark Twain Quotes

Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen.

Lord save us all from a hope tree that has lost the faculty of putting out blossoms.

Loyalty to petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.

Loyalty to the country always. Loyalty to the government when it deserves it.

Man is the only animal that blushes - or needs to.

Martyrdom covers a multitude of sins.

Mark Twain Quotes

My mother had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it.

Necessity is the mother of taking chances.

No sinner is ever saved after the first twenty minutes of a sermon.

Noise proves nothing. Often a hen who has merely laid an egg cackles as if she laid an asteroid.

Often it does seem a pity that Noah and his party did not miss the boat.

Mark Twain Quotes

Only kings, presidents, editors, and people with tapeworms have the right to use the editorial "we."

Part of the secret of a success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about.

Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.

Principles have no real force except when one is well-fed.

Mark Twain Quotes

Prosperity is the best protector of principle.

Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.

Repartee is something we think of twenty-four hours too late.

Soap and education are not as sudden as a massacre, but they are more deadly in the long run.

Sometimes too much to drink is barely enough.

Mark Twain Quotes

Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very"; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.

Such is the human race, often it seems a pity that Noah... didn't miss the boat.

Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.

The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.

The common eye sees only the outside of things, and judges by that, but the seeing eye pierces through and reads the heart and the soul, finding there capacities which the outside didn't indicate or promise, and which the other kind couldn't detect.

Mark Twain Quotes

The educated Southerner has no use for an 'R', except at the beginning of a word.

The elastic heart of youth cannot be compressed into one constrained shape long at a time.

The finest clothing made is a person's own skin, but, of course, society demands something more than this.

The holy passion of friendship is so sweet and steady and loyal and enduring in nature that it will last through a whole lifetime, if not asked to lend money.

The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.

Mark Twain Quotes

The human race is a race of cowards; and I am not only marching in that procession but carrying a banner.

The humorous story is told gravely; the teller does his best to conceal the fact that he even dimly suspects that there is anything funny about it.

The lack of money is the root of all evil.

The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.

The public is the only critic whose opinion is worth anything at all.

Mark Twain Quotes

The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.

The rule is perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.

The wit knows that his place is at the tail of a procession.

There are lies, damned lies and statistics.

There are people who can do all fine and heroic things but one - keep from telling their happiness to the unhappy.

There are several good protections against temptation, but the surest is cowardice.

There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

There is a charm about the forbidden that makes it unspeakably desirable.

To succeed in life, you need two things: ignorance and confidence.

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.

Truth is mighty and will prevail. There is nothing the matter with this, except that it ain't so.

Truth is mighty and will prevail. There is nothing wrong with this, except that it ain't so.

Under certain circumstances, profanity provides a relief denied even to prayer.

We have the best government that money can buy.

What a wee little part of a person's life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself.

What's the use you learning to do right, when it's troublesome to do right and ain't no trouble to do wrong, and the wages is just the same?

When a person cannot deceive himself the chances are against his being able to deceive other people.

When people do not respect us we are sharply offended; yet in his private heart no man much respects himself.

When red-haired people are above a certain social grade their hair is auburn.

When we remember that we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained.

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

Whoever has lived long enough to find out what life is, knows how deep a debt of gratitude we owe to Adam, the first great benefactor of our race. He brought death into the world.

Why shouldn't truth be stranger than fiction? Fiction, after all, has to make sense.

Wit is the sudden marriage of ideas which before their union were not perceived to have any relation.

Words are only painted fire; a look is the fire itself.

Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do. Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do.

Work is a necessary evil to be avoided.

Wrinkles should merely indicate where smiles have been.

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