Thursday, 21 January 2010

The wit and wisdom of Dr. Samuel Johnson

When I was having a dig around for Dr. Johnson's famous quote about London (see my post 'London calling me home' 18/1/10) I came across a bunch of the old boy's observations, which still rise a smile 300-or so years on. Ten among the most famous I'm sharing with you today.

  • Marriage has many pains, but celibacy has no pleasures.
  • A fly, sir, may sting a stately horse and make him wince; but one is but an insect, and the other is a horse still.
  • Were it not for imagination a man would be as happy in arms of a chambermaid as of a duchess.
  • The triumph of hope over experience. (on hearing a man had remarried following the death of wife to whom he had been unhappily married).
  • Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.
  • A woman's preaching is like a dog's walking on his hind legs. It is not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all.
  • A cucumber should be well sliced, and dressed with pepper and vinegar, and then thrown out, as good for nothing.
  • When a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.
  • There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern.
    And, of course,
  • When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.


    1. Talking of doctors is yours any good? What's all this nonsense about grapefruit and statins? Did you just accept his/her word for it? Do you know the reasons why you can't have grapefruit? Can you not have it at all or perhaps just a teeny weeny bit. I reckon you are a bit of a {grape}fruitcake. Dr Johnson would have been more forensic.
      You have just been 'earped' by the 'Wit and Wisdom of Doc Hol-iday'. Ah yes Doc Hol. Was he not to Earp what Boswell was to [Dr] Johnson?
      As for your visions of Joanna or was it mortality,i am def in accord with your view that living is better than the other version, trouble is I can't get a preview of the other version. Any suggestions anyone?

    2. The longer I conduct this blog, the nearer I'll be to an answer. So keep following. GC


    What do you think? GC