Quotes of the week

  • As I take my shoes from the shoemaker and my coat from the tailor, so I take my religion from the priest.


  • How haughtily he lifts his nose to tell what every schoolboy knows.


  • Art is so wonderfully irrational, exuberantly pointless, but necessary all the same. That is hard for a puritan to understand.


  • Every fear hides a wish.


  • The natural man does not feel that he is aggregating at all unless he aggregates against something.He refers to himself to the tribe; he is loyal to the tribe quite inseparably he fears or dislikes those others outside the tribe.

    Society, Sociology, Tribes

  • Earnestness can ferment into sentimentality.


  • The infliction of cruelty with a good conscience is a delight to moralists. That is why they invented Hell.


  • This film cost $31 million. With that kind of money I could have invaded some country.


Picture of Jonathan Choat

World Wit & Wisdom

I have always loved words, particularly rather arcane words with exact meanings and delicious sounds like epigone and crepuscular and meretricious. But it is the way quick, intelligent people combine and manipulate words to respond to situations, observations on events, life generally and other people’s ways, with witty, clever and observant epigrams – amusing or instructive quotations, which I most admire. And then there are the hilarious mistakes and deliberate puns – do see Spoonerisms and Notices /signs.

I have compiled a selection from many sources, for you to read or quote, all of which I find amusing, penetrating, acerbic and dryly witty and certainly worth recording. This is a selection of the best I have found, though there are so many more and new quotes are created every day. At present, it has drawn on mainly western hemisphere authors, but there must be a plentiful representation of wits from all over the world – so please contribute them for inclusion. I want this site to be a shared experience, so this is your chance to contribute your own or someone else’s wit and wisdom to make this a growing and live compilation.

You can enjoy World Wit and Wisdom every day by email or send quotes to friends and family as greetings – or otherwise – and it is all free. Enjoy and let me know what you think of the site and send me your contributions.