The Devils Dictionary

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Die , n. The word is found in an immortal couplet by that eminent poet and domestic economist, Senator Depew:. Dog , n. This Divine Being in some of his smaller and silkier incarnations, takes, in the affection of Woman, the place to which there is no human male aspirant. The Dog is a survival—an anachronism. He toils not, neither does he spin, yet Solomon in all his glory never lay upon a door-mat all day long, sun-soaked and fly-fed and fat, while his master worked for the means wherewith to purchase an idle wag of the Solomonic tail, seasoned with a look of tolerant recognition.

Education , n. That which discloses to the wise and disguises from the foolish their lack of understanding. Elegy , n. Envelope , n. The coffin of a document; the scabbard of a bill; the husk of a remittance; the bed-gown of a love-letter. Epicure , n. An opponent of Epicurus, an abstemious philosopher who, holding that pleasure should be the chief aim of man, wasted no time in gratification of the senses. Exhort , v. In religious affairs, to put the conscience of another upon the spit and roast it to a nut-brown discomfort.

Exile , n. One who serves his country by residing abroad, yet is not an ambassador. Made a joke on the ex-Isle of Erin. Coldly received.

War with the whole world! Fork , n.

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An instrument used chiefly for the purpose of putting dead animals into the mouth. Formerly the knife was used for this purpose, and by many worthy persons is still thought to have many advantages over the other tool, which, however, they do not altogether reject, but use to assist in the charging of the knife. Frog , n. A reptile with edible legs.

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Schliemann has set the question forever at rest by uncovering the bones of the slain frogs. Gallows , n. A stage for the performance of miracle plays, in which the leading actor is translated to heaven. In this country the gallows is chiefly remarkable for the number of persons who escape it. Geology , n.

The Secondary is largely made up of red worms and moles. The Tertiary comprises railway tracks, patent pavements, grass, snakes, mouldy boots, beer bottles, tomato cans, intoxicated citizens, anarchists, snap-dogs and fools. Graces , n. Three beautiful goddesses, Aglaia, Thalia and Euphrosyne, who attended upon Venus, serving without salary.

They were at no expense for board and clothing, for they ate nothing to speak of and dressed according to the weather, wearing whatever breeze happened to be blowing. Handkerchief , n. A small square of silk or linen, used in various ignoble offices about the face and especially serviceable at funerals to conceal the lack of tears. Hemp , n.

A plant from whose fibrous bark is made an article of neckware which is frequently put on after public speaking in the open air and prevents the wearer from taking cold.

Hog , n. A bird remarkable for the catholicity of its appetite and serving to illustrate that of ours. Among the Mahometans and Jews, the hog is not in favor as an article of diet, but is respected for the delicacy of its habits, the beauty of its plumage and the melody of its voice. It is chiefly as a songster that the fowl is esteemed; a cage of him in full chorus has been known to draw tears from two persons at once. Hostility , n. Idleness, n. A model farm where the devil experiments with seeds of new sins and promotes the growth of staple vices.

Innate , adj. Interpreter , n.

Interregnum , n. The period during which a monarchical country is governed by a warm spot on the cushion of the throne. The experiment of letting the spot grow cold has commonly been attended by most unhappy results from the zeal of many worthy persons to make it warm again. Introduction , n. A social ceremony invented by the devil for the gratification of his servants and the plaguing of his enemies. Kilt , n. A costume sometimes worn by Scotchmen in America and Americans in Scotland. Lap , n. One of the most important organs of the female system—an admirable provision of nature for the repose of infancy, but chiefly useful in rural festivities to support plates of cold chicken and heads of adult males.

Litigation , n. A machine which you go into as a pig and come out of as a sausage. Logomachy , n. A war in which the weapons are words and the wounds punctures in the swim-bladder of self-esteem—a kind of contest in which, the vanquished being unconscious of defeat, the victor is denied the reward of success. Mayonnaise , n. One of the sauces which serve the French in place of a state religion. Me , pro. The objectionable case of I. The personal pronoun in English has three cases, the dominative, the objectionable and the oppressive.


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As compared with the statesman, he suffers the disadvantage of being alive. PRAY, v.

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The Devil's Dictionary

To ask that the laws of the universe be annulled in behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy. Devoid of all delusions save those of observation, experience and reflection. The dream of a mad philosopher. That which would remain in the cupel if one should assay a phantom.

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The nucleus of a vacuum. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. The climate of the hour. A permanent topic of conversation among persons whom it does not interest, but who have inherited the tendency to chatter about it from naked arboreal ancestors whom it keenly concerned.

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