Abstainer: a weak person who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure.

Clairvoyant, n.: A person, commonly a woman, who has the power of seeing that which is invisible to her patron - namely, that he is a blockhead.

Destiny: A tyrant's authority for crime and a fool's excuse for failure.

Photograph: a picture painted by the sun without instruction in art.

Politics n. Strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.

Litigant. A person about to give up his skin for the hope of retaining his bones.

Witticism. A sharp and clever remark, usually quoted and seldom noted; what the Philistine is pleased to call a joke.

Edible - good to eat and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man to a worm.

Pray: To ask the laws of the universe to be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy.

Politeness, n: The most acceptable hypocrisy.

Marriage, n: the state or condition of a community consisting of a master, a mistress, and two slaves, making in all, two.

We submit to the majority because we have to. But we are not compelled to call our attitude of subjection a posture of respect.

Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.

Divorce: a resumption of diplomatic relations and rectification of boundaries.

All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusions is called a philosopher.

Jealous, adj. Unduly concerned about the preservation of that which can be lost only if not worth keeping.

In our civilization, and under our republican form of government, intelligence is so highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of office.

Creditor. One of a tribe of savages dwelling beyond the Financial Straits and dreaded for their desolating incursions.

Lawsuit: A machine which you go into as a pig and come out of as a sausage.

Backbite. To speak of a man as you find him when he can't find you.

Calamities are of two kinds: misfortunes to ourselves, and good fortune to others.

Suffrage, noun. Expression of opinion by means of a ballot. The right of suffrage (which is held to be both a privilege and a duty) means, as commonly interpreted, the right to vote for the man of another man's choice, and is highly prized.

To apologize is to lay the foundation for a future offense.

Painting, n.: The art of protecting flat surfaces from the weather, and exposing them to the critic.

Revolution, n. In politics, an abrupt change in the form of misgovernment.

Debt, n. An ingenious substitute for the chain and whip of the slavedriver.

Experience - the wisdom that enables us to recognise in an undesirable old acquaintance the folly that we have already embraced.

Erudition - dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.

The hardest tumble a man can make is to fall over his own bluff.

Enthusiasm - a distemper of youth, curable by small doses of repentance in connection with outward applications of experience.

Abscond - to move in a mysterious way, commonly with the property of another.

Callous adj. Gifted with great fortitude to bear the evils afflicting another.

Life - a spiritual pickle preserving the body from decay.

Admiral. That part of a warship which does the talking while the figurehead does the thinking.

Learning, n. The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious.

Religion. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable.

Insurance - an ingenious modern game of chance in which the player is permitted to enjoy the comfortable conviction that he is beating the man who keeps the table.

Beauty, n: the power by which a woman charms a lover and terrifies a husband.

Laziness. Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.

An egotist is a person of low taste - more interested in himself than in me.

Patriotism. Combustible rubbish ready to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name.

Liberty, n. One of imagination's most precious possessions.

Optimism - the doctrine or belief that everything is beautiful, including what is ugly.

Consul - in American politics, a person who having failed to secure an office from the people is given one by the Administration on condition that he leave the country.

Duty - that which sternly impels us in the direction of profit, along the line of desire.

Experience is a revelation in the light of which we renounce our errors of youth for those of age.

Forgetfulness - a gift of God bestowed upon debtors in compensation for their destitution of conscience.

The world has suffered more from the ravages of ill-advised marriages than from virginity.

Optimism. The doctrine or belief that everything is beautiful, including what is ugly.