Thursday, August 16

The Devil's Dictionary

Came across the devil's dictionary while "Googling".. so thot of sharing an extract wid my readers..

this dictionary was the masterpiece outcome of the devilish mind of Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce, US author & satirist; wrote "The Fiend's Delight" 1872, "Tales of Soldiers and Civilians" 1891, "The Devil's Dictionary" 1906 (orig. "The Cynic's Word-book"; disappeared in Mexico.

the MAster's work follow:

· ALIEN, n. An American sovereign in his probationary state.
· ARREST, v.t. Formally to detain one accused of unusualness.

· BAIT, n. A preparation that renders the hook more palatable. The best kind is beauty.
· BRAIN, n. An apparatus with which we think what we think. That which distinguishes the man who is content to _be_ something from the man who wishes to _do_ something. A man of great wealth, or one who has been pitch forked into high station, has commonly such a headful of brain that his neighbors cannot keep their hats on. In our civilization, and under our republican form of government, brain is so highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of office.

· COMPULSION, n. The eloquence of power.
· CURIOSITY, n. An objectionable quality of the female mind. The desire to know whether or not a woman is cursed with curiosity is one of the most active and insatiable passions of the masculine soul.

· DESTINY, n. A tyrant's authority for crime and fool's excuse for failure.
· DISOBEDIENCE, n. The silver lining to the cloud of servitude.

· ELECTRICITY, n. The power that causes all natural phenomena not known to be caused by something else.
· ENVY, n. Emulation adapted to the meanest capacity.

· FOOL, n. A person who pervades the domain of intellectual speculation and diffuses himself through the channels of moral activity. He it was who invented letters, printing, the railroad, the steamboat, the telegraph, the platitude and the circle of the sciences. He founded theology, philosophy, law, medicine and Chicago. He established monarchical and republican government. He is from everlasting to everlasting.
· FOREFINGER, n. The finger commonly used in pointing out two malefactors.

· GENEROUS, adj. Originally this word meant noble by birth and was rightly applied to a great multitude of persons. It now means noble by nature and is taking a bit of a rest.
· GOOD, adj. Sensible, madam, to the worth of this present writer. Alive, sir, to the advantages of letting him alone.

· HEART, n. An automatic, muscular blood-pump. Figuratively, this useful organ is said to be the east of emotions and sentiments -- a very pretty fancy which, however, is nothing but a survival of a once universal belief.
· HUSBAND, n. One who, having dined, is charged with the care of the plate.

· IMMIGRANT, n. An unenlightened person who thinks one country better than another.
· INADMISSIBLE, adj. Not competent to be considered.

· JEALOUS, adj. Unduly concerned about the preservation of that which can be lost only if not worth keeping.
· JUSTICE, n. A commodity which is a more or less adulterated condition the State sells to the citizen as a reward for his allegiance, taxes and personal service.

· KILL, v.t. To create a vacancy without nominating a successor.
· KING, n. A male person commonly known in America as a "crowned head," although he never wears a crown and has usually no head to speak of.

· LECTURER, n. One with his hand in your pocket, his tongue in your ear and his faith in your patience.
· LAZINESS, n. Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.

· ME, pro. The objectionable case of I. The personal pronoun in English has three cases, the dominative, the objectionable and the oppressive. Each is all three.
· MONEY, n. A blessing that is of no advantage to us excepting when we part with it. An evidence of culture and a passport to polite society. Supportable property.

· NIRVANA, n. In the Buddhist religion, a state of pleasurable annihilation awarded to the wise, particularly to those wise enough to understand it.
· NONSENSE, n. The objections that are urged against this excellent dictionary.

· OPPOSE, v. To assist with obstructions and objections.
· OPTIMIST, n. A proponent of the doctrine that black is white. A pessimist applied to God for relief.

· PARDON, v. To remit a penalty and restore to the life of crime. To add to the lure of crime the temptation of ingratitude.
· PLEASE, v. To lay the foundation for a superstructure of imposition.

· QUEEN, n. A woman by whom the realm is ruled when there is a king, and through whom it is ruled when there is not.
· QUOTIENT, n. A number showing how many times a sum of money belonging to one person is contained in the pocket of another -- usually about as many times as it can be got there.

· RANSOM, n. The purchase of that which neither belongs to the seller, nor can belong to the buyer. The most unprofitable of investments.
· RECRUIT n. A person distinguishable from a civilian by his uniform and from a soldier by his gait.

· SELFISH, adj. Devoid of consideration for the selfishness of others.
· STORY, n. A narrative, commonly untrue. The truth of the stories here following has, however, not been successfully impeached.

· TAKE, v.t. To acquire, frequently by force but preferably by stealth.
· TWICE, adv. Once too often.

· UGLINESS, n. A gift of the gods to certain women, entailing virtue without humility.
· ULTIMATUM, n. In diplomacy, a last demand before resorting to concessions.

· VANITY, n. The tribute of a fool to the worth of the nearest ass.

· WITCH, n. (1) Any ugly and repulsive old woman, in a wicked league with the devil.
(2) A beautiful and attractive young woman, in wickedness a league beyond the devil.
· WINE, n. Fermented grape-juice known to the Women's Christian Union as "liquor," sometimes as "rum.". God's next best gift to man.

· YANKEE, n. In Europe, an American. In the Northern States of our Union, a New Englander. In the Southern States the word is unknown.
· YOUTH, n. The Period of Possibility.

· ZEAL, n. A certain nervous disorder afflicting the young and inexperienced. A passion that goes before a sprawl.
· ZIGZAG, v.t. To move forward uncertainly, from side to side, as one carrying the white man's burden.

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