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(About Name, Patriotism)

PATRIOTISM, n. Combustible rubbish read to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name. In Dr. Johnson's famous dictionary patriotism is defined as the last resort of a scoundrel. With all due respect to an enlightened but inferior lexicographer


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TRINITY, n. In the multiplex theism of certain Christian churches, three entirely distinct deities consistent with only one. Subordinate deities of the polytheistic faith, such as devils and angels, are not dowered with the power of combination, and must urge individually their clames to adoration and propitiation. The Trinity is one of the most sublime mysteries of our holy religion. In rejecting it because it is incomprehensible, Unitarians betray their inadequate sense of theological fundamentals. In religion we believe only what we do not understand, except in the instance of an intelligible doctrine that contradicts an incomprehensible one. In that case we believe the former as a part of the latter.
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

DEPUTY, n. A male relative of an office-holder, or of his bondsman. The deputy is commonly a beautiful young man, with a red necktie and an intricate system of cobwebs extending from his nose to his desk. When accidentally struck by the janitor's broom, he gives off a cloud of dust.Chief Deputy, the Master cried,To-day the books are to be tried By experts and accountants who Have been commissioned to go through Our office here, to see if we Have stolen injudiciously. Please have the proper entries made, The proper balances displayed, Conforming to the whole amount Of cash on hand --which they will count. I've long admired your punctual way -- Here at the break and close of day, Confronting in your chair the crowd Of business men, whose voices loud And gestures violent you quell By some mysterious, calm spell -- Some magic lurking in your look That brings the noisiest to book And spreads a holy and profound Tranquillity o'er all around. So orderly all's done that they Who came to draw remain to pay. But now the time demands, at last, That you employ your genius vast In energies more active. Rise And shake the lightnings from your eyes Inspire your underlings, and fling Your spirit into everything The Master's hand here dealt a whack Upon the Deputy's bent back, When straightway to the floor there fell A shrunken globe, a rattling shell A blackened, withered, eyeless head The man had been a twelvemonth dead. --Jamrach Holobom
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

HALO, n. Properly, a luminous ring encircling an astronomical body, but not infrequently confounded with aureola, or nimbus, a somewhat similar phenomenon worn as a head-dress by divinities and saints. The halo is a purely optical illusion, produced by moisture in the air, in the manner of a rainbow but the aureola is conferred as a sign of superior sanctity, in the same way as a bishop's mitre, or the Pope's tiara. In the painting of the Nativity, by Szedgkin, a pious artist of Pesth, not only do the Virgin and the Child wear the nimbus, but an ass nibbling hay from the sacred manger is similarly decorated and, to his lasting honor be it said, appears to bear his unaccustomed dignity with a truly saintly grace.
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

FAMOUS, adj. Conspicuously miserable.Done to a turn on the iron, behold Him who to be famous aspired. Content Well, his grill has a plating of gold, And his twistings are greatly admired. --Hassan Brubuddy
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

OBSESSED, p. p. Vexed by an evil spirit, like the Gadarene swine and other critics. Obsession was once more common than it is now. Arasthus tells of a peasant who was occupied by a different devil for every day in the week, and on Sundays by two. They were frequently seen, always walking in his shadow, when he had one, but were finally driven away by the village notary, a holy man but they took the peasant with them, for he vanished utterly. A devil thrown out of a woman by the Archbishop of Rheims ran through the trees, pursued by a hundred persons, until the open country was reached, where by a leap higher than a church spire he escaped into a bird. A chaplain in Cromwell's army exorcised a soldier's obsessing devil by throwing the soldier into the water, when the devil came to the surface. The soldier, unfortunately, did not.
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

ADDER, n. A species of snake. So called from its habit of adding funeral outlays to the other expenses of living.
Ambrose Gwinett Bierce

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Based on Topics: Name Quotes, Patriotism Quotes

Based on Keywords: combustible, illuminate, lexicographer