Mark Twain’s quotes have become a part of the cultural fabric. He is one of the most beloved American writers whose works have continued to be cherished by readers of all ages. Being a master of words, he left pithy and insightful quotes that have made the most lasting impact and have resonated with people across the globe.
As a master of one-liners, one of the things I find most interesting about Mark Twain is his way of expressing complex ideas in a humorous way. He wrote on a lot of topics including love, society, death, and politics. His quips and observations are as funny today as they were when he first penned them
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However, beneath his wit lay a deep understanding of the human experience. Whether you’re a fan of Mark Twain or not, his quotes are sure to make you laugh, think and reflect on your own life. So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!
Don’t forget to check out our collection about know your worth quotes that will drive the confidence inside you.
Also, remember to read through more inspirational quotes we have for you.
Best Mark Twain quotes worth reading
- “It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.” — Mark Twain
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- “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” — Mark Twain
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- “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” — Mark Twain
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- “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” — Mark Twain
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- “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.” — Mark Twain
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- “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.” — Mark Twain
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- “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” — Mark Twain
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- “Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.” — Mark Twain
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- “Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.” — Mark Twain
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- “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” — Mark Twain
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- “Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.” — Mark Twain
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- “Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.” — Mark Twain
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- “All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is sure.” — Mark Twain
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- “The lack of money is the root of all evil.” — Mark Twain
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- “Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.”— Mark Twain
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- “I can live for two months on a good compliment.” — Mark Twain
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- “Never put off till tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.” — Mark Twain
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- “In the first place, God made idiots. That was for practice. Then he made school boards.” — Mark Twain
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- “A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.” — Mark Twain
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- “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” — Mark Twain
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Mark Twain quotes about imagination
- “I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.” — Mark Twain
- “Buy land, they’re not making it anymore.” — Mark Twain
- “You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” — Mark Twain
- “Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.” — Mark Twain
- “Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt.” — Mark Twain
- “Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest.” — Mark Twain
- “Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.” — Mark Twain
- “‘Classic’–a book which people praise and don’t read.” — Mark Twain
- “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; truth isn’t.” — Mark Twain
- “The funniest things are forbidden.”— Mark Twain
More Mark Twain quotes about love
- “There are no people who are quite so vulgar as the over-refined.”— Mark Twain
- “When you fish for love, bait with your heart, not your brain.”— Mark Twain
- “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.”— Mark Twain
- “Don’t wake up a woman in love. Let her dream, so that she does not weep when she returns to her bitter reality.”— Mark Twain
- “Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.”— Mark Twain
- “Of all the animals, man is the only one that is cruel. He is the only one that inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it.”— Mark Twain
- “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re misinformed.”— Mark Twain
- “You can’t reason with your heart; it has its own laws, and thumps about things which the intellect scorns.”— Mark Twain
- “The only very marked difference between the average civilized man and the average savage is that the one is gilded and the other is painted.”— Mark Twain
- “The secret of success is making your vocation your vacation.”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes about success
- “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”— Mark Twain
- “The trouble is not in dying for a friend, but in finding a friend worth dying for.”— Mark Twain
- “Truth is the most valuable thing we have. Let us economize it.”— Mark Twain
- “No real gentleman will tell the naked truth in the presence of ladies.”— Mark Twain
- “Wrinkles should merely indicate where the smiles have been.”— Mark Twain
- “Don’t part with your illusions. When they are gone you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.”— Mark Twain
- “Laughter without a tinge of philosophy is but a sneeze of humor. Genuine humor is replete with wisdom.”— Mark Twain
- “The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”— Mark Twain
- “What do we call love, hate, charity, revenge, humanity, forgiveness? Different results of the master impulse, the necessity of securing one’s self-approval.”— Mark Twain
- “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes about education
- “Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.”— Mark Twain
- “The gentle reader will never, never know what a consummate ass he can become until he goes abroad.”— Mark Twain
- “If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”— Mark Twain
- “I did not attend his funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it.”— Mark Twain
- “To get the full value of joy you must have someone to divide it with.”— Mark Twain
- “It liberates the vandal to travel—you never saw a bigoted, opinionated, stubborn, narrow-minded, self-conceited, almighty mean man in your life but he had stuck in one place since he was born and thought God made the world and dyspepsia and bile for his especial comfort and satisfaction.”— Mark Twain
- “Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”— Mark Twain
- “Loyalty to the nation all the time, loyalty to the government when it deserves it.”— Mark Twain
- “When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries disappear and life stands explained.”— Mark Twain
- “What would men be without women? Scarce, sir…mighty scarce.”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes to inspire you
- “It is noble to teach oneself, but still nobler to teach others—and less trouble.”— Mark Twain
- “Give every day the chance to become the most beautiful day of your life.”— Mark Twain
- “A clear conscience is the sure sign of a bad memory.”— Mark Twain
- “Education: the path from cocky ignorance to miserable uncertainty.”— Mark Twain
- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”— Mark Twain
- “ Never refuse to do kindness unless the act would work great injury to yourself, and never refuse to take a drink– under any circumstances.”— Mark Twain
- “Human beings can be awful cruel to one another.”— Mark Twain
- “Jim said that bees won’t sting idiots, but I didn’t believe that, because I tried them lots of times myself and they wouldn’t sting me.”— Mark Twain
- “Right is right, and wrong is wrong, and a body ain’t got no business doing wrong when he ain’t ignorant and knows better.”— Mark Twain
- “Hain’t we got all the fools in town on our side? And hain’t that a big enough majority in any town?”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes about not giving up
- “What’s the use you learning to do right when it’s troublesome to do right and ain’t no trouble to do wrong, and the wages is just the same?”— Mark Twain
- “Sometimes you gwyne to git hurt, and sometimes you gwyne to git sick; but every time you gwyne to git well again.”— Mark Twain
- “Stars and shadows ain’t good to see by.”— Mark Twain
- “Now we’ll start this band of robbers and call it Tom Sawyer’s gang. Everybody that wants to join has got to take an oath, and write his name in blood.”— Mark Twain
- “Be respectful to your superiors, if you have any.”— Mark Twain
- “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”— Mark Twain
- “I was seldom able to see an opportunity until it had ceased to be one.”— Mark Twain
- “I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.”— Mark Twain
- “The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not.”— Mark Twain
- “He had discovered a great law of human action, without knowing it — namely, that in order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to obtain.”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes to empower you
- “Here was a gorgeous triumph; they were missed; they were mourned; hearts were breaking on their account; tears were being shed; accusing memories of unkindnesses to these poor lost lads were rising up, and unavailing regrets and remorse were being indulged: and best of all, the departed were the talk of the whole town, and the envy of all the boys, as far as this dazzling notoriety was concerned. This was fine. It was worth being a pirate, after all.”— Mark Twain
- “Huckleberry was cordially hated and dreaded by all the mothers of the town because he was idle, and lawless, and vulgar, and bad – and because all their children admired him so, and delighted in his forbidden society, and wished they dared to be like him.”— Mark Twain
- “The elastic heart of youth cannot be compressed into one constrained shape long at a time.”— Mark Twain
- “I ain’t doing my duty by that boy, and that’s the Lord’s truth, goodness knows. Spare the rod and spile the child, as the Good Book says. I’m a-laying up sin and suffering for us both, I know. He’s full of the Old Scratch, but laws-a-me! he’s my own dead sister’s boy, poor thing, and I ain’t got the heart to lash him, somehow. Every time I let him off, my conscience does hurt me so, and every time I hit him my old heart most breaks.”— Mark Twain
- “Tom appeared on the sidewalk with a bucket of whitewash and a long-handled brush. He surveyed the fence, and all gladness left him and a deep melancholy settled down upon his spirit. Thirty yards of board fence nine feet high. Life to him seemed hollow, and existence but a burden.”— Mark Twain
- “Ah, if he could only die temporarily!”— Mark Twain
- “Tom was a glittering hero once more-the pet of the old, the envy of the young. His name even went into immortal print, for the village paper magnified him. There were some that believed he would be President, yet, if he escaped hanging.”— Mark Twain
- “There was no getting around the stubborn fact that taking sweetmeats was only “hooking,” while taking bacon and hams and such valuables was plain simple stealing — and there was a command against that in the Bible. So they inwardly resolved that so long as they remained in the business, their pirates should not again be sullied with the crime of stealing.”— Mark Twain
- “I could forgive the boy, now, if he’d committed a million sins!”— Mark Twain
Mark Twain quotes about life
- “He was not the Model Boy of the village. He knew the model boy very well though–and loathed him.”— Mark Twain
- “Oh, they just have a bully time – take ships, and burn them, and get the money and bury it in awful places in their island where there’s ghosts and things to watch, it, and kill everybody in the ships – make ‘em walk a plank. they don’t kill the women – they’re too noble. And the women’s always beautiful, too.”— Mark Twain
- “Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do, and. Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do.”— Mark Twain
- “Often, the less there is to justify a traditional custom, the harder it is to get rid of it.”— Mark Twain
- “The minister gave out his text and droned along monotonously through an argument that was so prosy that many a head by and by began to nod — and yet it was an argument that dealt in limitless fire and brimstone and thinned the predestined elect down to a company so small as to be hardly worth the saving.”— Mark Twain
- “You only just tell a boy you won’t ever have anybody but him, ever ever ever, and then you kiss and that’s all. Anybody can do it.”— Mark Twain
Which of these Mark Twain quotes inspired you the most?
As you can see Mark Twain quotes are super insightful, thought-provoking, and most of all witty. From his insightful commentary on human nature to his humorous observations on life, his words remain just as relevant and insightful today as they were over a century ago when he first spoke them.
I particularly love the universality of his quotes. They are like nuggets of wisdom that can be applied to a wide range of situations. Whether you are a student, business owner, politician, or parent, there is surely something in Mark’s words that can inspire you to be better and see the world from a different perspective.
Which of Mark Twain quotes spoke to you in a profound way? Feel free to share them on your social media page or use them in your speeches and presentations. Best of all, they can become the subject of your tattoos and other forms of personal expression.