C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


Laugh and be fat, sir.

Ben Jonson.

Oh, I am stabbed with laughter!


They laugh that win.


The laughers are a majority.


Laughter means sympathy.


A good laugh is sunshine in a house.


The laughter of man is the contentment of God.

John Weiss.

With his eyes in flood with laughter.


Nothing is more silly than silly laughter.


Life without laughing is a dreary blank.


Laugh and the world laughs with you.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox.

He is not always at ease who laughs.

St. Evremond.

The loud laugh that spoke the vacant mind.


Least at thine own things laugh.

George Herbert.

And still, laughter is akin to weeping.


I am tipsy with laughing.


Give me an honest laugher.

Sir Walter Scott.

People who do not know how to laugh, are always pompous and self-conceited.


Did you ever observe that immoderate laughter always ends in a sigh?

Leigh Hunt.

Man is the only creature endowed with the power of laughter.


The most completely lost of all days is that on which one has not laughed.


He who always prefaces his tale with laughter is poised between impertinence and folly.


Sport, that wrinkled Care derides, and Laughter, holding both his sides.


Laughter is the chorus of conversation.


The house of laughter makes a house of woe.


To provoke laughter without joining in it greatly heightens the effect.


That laughter costs too much which is purchased by the sacrifice of decency.


Men show their character in nothing more clearly than by what they think laughable.


How much lies in laughter: the cipher-key, wherewith we decipher the whole man.


More people laugh at us than with us, however it may appear at the moment.


The laughter of girls is, and ever was, among the delightful sounds of earth.

De Quincey.

Morally considered, laughter is next to the Ten Commandments.

H. W. Shaw.

  • Care to our coffin adds a nail, no doubt;
  • And every grin, so merry, draws one out.
  • Peter Pindar.

    With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.


    Though laughter is allowable, a horse-laugh is abominable.


    The man who cannot laugh is not only fit for treasons, strategems, and spoils, but his whole life is already a treason and a strategem.


  • Making that idiot, laughter, keep men’s eyes,
  • And strain their cheeks to idle merriment.
  • Shakespeare.

    Laughter is a most healthful exertion; it is one of the greatest helps to digestion with which I am acquainted.

    Dr. Hufeland.

    I am sure that since I had the use of my reason, no human being has ever heard me laugh.


    I am persuaded that every time a man smiles—but much more so when he laughs—it adds something to this fragment of life.


    I like the laughter that opens the lips and the heart,—that shows at the same time pearls and the soul.

    Victor Hugo.

    Hypocrites weep, and you cannot tell their tears from those of saints; but no bad man ever laughed sweetly yet.


    One good, hearty laugh is a bombshell exploding in the right place, while spleen and discontent are a gun that kicks over the man who shoots it off.


  • Low gurgling laughter, as sweet
  • As the swallow’s song i’ the south,
  • And a ripple of dimples that, dancing, meet
  • By the curves of a perfect mouth.
  • Paul Hamilton Hayne.

    God made both tears and laughter, and both for kind purposes; for as laughter enables mirth and surprise to breathe freely, so tears enable sorrow to vent itself patiently. Tears hinder sorrow from becoming despair and madness.

    Leigh Hunt.

    Laughter almost ever cometh of things most disproportioned to ourselves and nature: delight hath a joy in it either permanent or present; laughter hath only a scornful tickling.

    Sir Philip Sidney.

  • You hear that boy laughing?—you think he’s all fun;
  • But the angels laugh, too, at the good he has done;
  • The children laugh loud as they troop to his call,
  • And the poor man that knows him laughs loudest of all.
  • O. W. Holmes.

    Wrinkle not thy face with too much laughter, lest thou become ridiculous; neither wanton thy heart with too much mirth, lest thou become vain: the suburbs of folly is vain mirth, and profuseness of laughter is the city of fools.


    Then let us laugh. It is the cheapest luxury man enjoys, and, as Charles Lamb says, “is worth a hundred groans in any state of the market.” It stirs up the blood, expands the chest, electrifies the nerves, clears away the cobwebs from the brain, and gives the whole system a shock to which the voltaic-pile is as nothing. Nay, its delicious alchemy converts even tears into the quintessence of merriment, and makes wrinkles themselves expressive of youth and frolic.

    Wm. Matthews.

  • While her laugh, full of life, without any control,
  • But the sweet one of gracefulness, rung from her soul;
  • And where it most sparkled, no glance could discover
  • In lips, cheek or eyes, for it brightened all over—
  • Like any fair lake that the breeze was upon,
  • When it breaks into dimples, and laughs in the sun.
  • Moore.