All womankind, from the highest to the lowest love jokes; the difficulty is to know how they choose to have them cut; and there is no knowing that, but by trying, as we do with our artillery in the field, by raising or letting down their breeches, till we hit the mark.
—Laurence Sterne (1713–68) Irish Anglican Novelist, Clergyman
His hilarity was like a scream from a crevasse.
—Graham Greene (1904–91) British Novelist, Playwright, Short Story Writer
The reformer for whom the world is not good enough finds himself shoulder to shoulder with him that is not good enough for the world.
—George Bernard Shaw (1856–1950) Irish Playwright
I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.
—Will Rogers (1879–1935) American Actor, Comic, Columnist, Radio Personality
I don’t mind making jokes, but I don’t want to look like one.
—Marilyn Monroe (1926–62) American Actor, Model, Singer
The crisis of yesterday is the joke of tomorrow.
—H. G. Wells (1866–1946) English Novelist, Historian, Social Thinker
Whatever is funny is subversive, every joke is ultimately a custard pie… a dirty joke is a sort of mental rebellion.
—George Orwell (1903–50) English Novelist, Journalist
A joke, even if it be a lame one, is nowhere so keenly relished or quickly applauded as in a murder trial.
—Mark Twain (1835–1910) American Humorist
A person reveals his character by nothing so clearly as the joke he resents.
—Georg Christoph Lichtenberg (1742–99) German Philosopher, Physicist
Be not affronted at a jest; if one throw ever so much salt at thee thou wilt receive no harm unless thou art raw and ulcerous.
—Junius Unidentified English Writer
In polite society one laughs at all the jokes, including the ones one has heard before.
—Frank Lane (1896–1981) American Sportsperson, Businessperson
If you’ve heard this story before, don’t stop me, because I’d like to hear it again.
—Groucho Marx (1890–1977) American Actor, Comedian, Singer
The best ideas come as jokes. Make your thinking as funny as possible.
—David Ogilvy (1911–99) British-American Advertising Executive
Prithee don’t screw your wit beyond the compass of good manners.
—Colley Cibber (1671–1757) English Playwright, Poet, Actor