Wide World of Quotes > James Thurber Quotes


James Thurber
US humorist and cartoonist
(1894-1961)



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The war between men and women
-- Title of Thurber's cartoon series than appeared in the New Yorker in period 20 January - 28 April 1934

It's a naïve domestic Burgundy without any breeding, but I'll think you'll be amused by its presumption.
-- Cartoon caption, New Yorker, 27 March 1937

Well, if I called the wrong number, why did you answer?
-- Cartoon caption, New Yorker, 5 June 1937

Early to rise and early to bed makes a male healthy, wealthy and dead.
-- "The Shrike and the Chipmunks" in the New Yorker, 18 February 1939; reprinted in Fables for our Time (1940)

It's our own story exactly! He bold as a hawk, she soft as the dawn.
-- Cartoon caption, New Yorker, 25 February 1939

Then with that faint fleeting smile playing about his lips, he faced the firing squad, erect and motionsless, proud and disdainful, Walty Mitty, the undefeated, disdainful to the last.
-- "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" in New Yorker, 18 March 1939; then reprinted in My World -- And Welcome to It (1942)

It's better to have loafed and lost than never to have loafed at all.
-- "The Courtship of Arthur and Al" in Fables for our Time (1940)

I was seized by the stern hand of Compulsion, that dark, unseasonable Urge that impels women to clean house in the middle of the night.
"There's a Time for Flags" in Alarms and Diversions (1959)

Humor is emotional chaos rememered in tranquillity.
-- New York Post, 29 February 1960


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The selection of the above quotes and the writing of the accompanying notes was performed by the author David Paul Wagner.

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