- "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire."
- "A modest little person, with much to be modest about."
- "I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure."
- "He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary."
William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway)
- "Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?"
Ernest Hemingway (about William Faulkner)
- "Thank you for sending me a copy of your book; I'll waste no time reading it."
- "He can compress the most words into the smallest idea of any man I know."
- "I've had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn't it."
- "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it."
- "He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends."
- "I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play, bring a friend... if you have one."
George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill
- "Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second... if there is one."
Winston Churchill, in response
- "I feel so miserable without you, it's almost like having you here."
- "He is a self-made man and worships his creator."
- "I've just learned about his illness. Let's hope it's nothing trivial."
Irvin S. Cobb
- "He is not only dull himself, he is the cause of dullness in others."
- "He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up."
- "He had delusions of adequacy."
- "There's nothing wrong with you that reincarnation won't cure."
Jack E. Leonard
- "He has the attention span of a lightning bolt."
- "They never open their mouths without subtracting from the sum of human knowledge."
Thomas Brackett Reed
- "He inherited some good instincts from his Quaker forebears, but by diligent hard work, he overcame them."
James Reston (about Richard Nixon)
- "In order to avoid being called a flirt, she always yielded easily."
Charles, Count Talleyrand
- "He loves nature in spite of what it did to him."
- "Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?"
- "His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork."
- "Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go."
- "He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts... for support rather than illumination."
Andrew Lang (1844-1912)
- "He has Van Gogh's ear for music."
- "I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception."
- "I regard you with an indifference bordering on aversion."
Robert Louis Stevenson
- "I treasure every moment that I do not see her."
- "I want to reach your mind - where is it currently located?"
- "I will always love the false image I had of you."
- "I wish I'd known you when you were alive."
Leonard Louis Levinson
- "I worship the quicksand he walks in."
- "I would not want to put him in charge of snake control in Ireland."
- "If he were any dumber, he'd be a tree."
- "If I found her floating in my pool, I'd punish my dog."
- "If you ever become a mother, can I have one of the puppies?"
- "In her last days, she resembled a spoiled pear."
Gore Vidal (about Gertrude Stein)
- "In her single person she managed to produce the effect of a majority."
- "Is that a beard, or are you eating a muskrat?"
- "It's like cuddling with a Butterball turkey."
- "Like the little man on top of the wedding cake."
- "Little things affect little minds."
- "Mind is so open that the wind whistles through it."
- "Nature not content with denying him the ability to think, has endowed him with the ability to write."
A. E. Housman
- "Nature played a cruel trick on her by giving her a waxed mustache."
- "Never trust a man who combs his hair straight from his left armpit."
Alice Roosevelt Longworth (about Douglas MacArthur)
- "Next-day delivery in a nanosecond world."
- "No more sense of direction than a bunch of firecrackers."
- "No one can have a higher opinion of him than I have; and I think he's a dirty little beast."
W. S. Gilbert
- "No woman of our time has gone further with less mental equipment."
- "Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast."
- "Ordinarily he is insane. But he has lucid moments when he is only stupid."
- "Please try not to be such a wiener-head."
- "Pushing forty? She's hanging on for dear life."
- "Shakespeare never has six lines together without a fault."
- "Sharp as a sack full of wet mice."
- "She's a vacuum with nipples."
Otto Preminger (about Marilyn Monroe)
- "She's been on more laps than a napkin."
- "She's descended from a long line her mother listened to."
Gypsy Rose Lee
- "She's good, being gone."
- "She's got such a narrow mind, when she walks fast her earrings bang together."
- "She's so pure, Moses couldn't even part her knees."
- "She's the kind of woman who climbed the ladder of success - wrong by wrong."
- "She's the sort of woman who lives for others - you can tell the others by their hunted expression."
C. S. Lewis
- "She could carry off anything; and some people said that she did."
- "She got her good looks from her father. He's a plastic surgeon."
- "A graceful taunt is worth a thousand insults."
- "This wasn't just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible, this was terrible with raisins in it."
- "If you can't say anything good about someone, sit right here by me."
Alice Roosevelt Longworth
- "But as he knew no bad language, he had called him all the names of common objects that he could think of, and had screamed: "You lamp! You towel! You plate!" and so on."
- "A great many people now reading and writing would be better employed keeping rabbits."
- "Don't be so humble, you're not that great."
- "A sophisticated rhetorician, inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity."
- "A four-hundred-dollar suit on him would look like socks on a rooster."
- "A wit with dunces, and a dunce with wits."
- "Abstract art? A product of the untalented, sold by the unprincipled to the utterly bewildered."
- "Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale her infinite sameness."
- "Always willing to lend a helping hand to the one above him."
F. Scott Fitzgerald (about Ernest Hemingway)
- "Being attacked by him is like being savaged by a dead sheep."
- "Don't look now, but there's one too many in this room and I think it's you."
- "End of season sale at the cerebral department."
- "Every time I look at you I get a fierce desire to be lonesome."
- "Failure has gone to his head."
- "Gee, what a terrific party. Later on we'll get some fluid and embalm each other."
- "God was bored by him."
- "He's completely unspoiled by failure."
- "He's liked, but he's not well liked."
- "He's the kind of man who picks his friends - to pieces."
- "He's the type of man who will end up dying in his own arms."
Mamie Van Doren (about Warren Beatty)
- "He's very clever, but sometimes his brains go to his head."
- "He can't help it - he was born with a silver foot in his mouth."
Ann Richards (about George Bush)
- "He could never see a belt without hitting below it."
- "He couldn't ad-lib a fart after a baked-bean dinner."
Johnny Carson (about Chevy Chase)
- "He had a big head and a face so ugly it became almost fascinating."
- "He had a mind so fine that no idea could violate it."
T.S. Eliot (about Henry James)
- "He had a winning smile, but everything else was a loser."
George C. Scott
- "He had delusions of adequacy."
- "He has every attribute of a dog except loyalty."
Thomas P. Gore
- "He has no more backbone than a chocolate eclair."
- "He has sat on the fence so long that the iron has entered his soul."
David Lloyd George
- "He has the lucidity which is the by-product of a fundamentally sterile mind."
Aneurin Bevan (about Neville Chamberlain)
- "He has turned almost alarmingly blond - he's gone past platinum, he must be plutonium; his hair is coordinated with his teeth."
Pauline Kael (about Robert Redford)
- "He hasn't an enemy in the world - but all his friends hate him."
- "He is a fine friend. He stabs you in the front."
Leonard Louis Levinson
- "He missed an invaluable opportunity to hold his tongue."