How empty is theory in the presence of fact!
Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please.
We do not deal much in facts when we are contemplating ourselves.
For a forgotten fact is news when it comes again.
I never saw an author who was aware that there is any dimensional difference
between a fact and a surmise.
Portrait of Clemens by Pach Bros.
Dave Thomson collection
The mere knowledge of a fact is pale; but when you come to realize your fact,
it takes on color. It is all the difference between hearing of a man being stabbed
to the heart, and seeing it done.
- A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
I am not one of those who in expressing opinions confine themselves to facts. I don't know anything that mars good literature so completely as too much truth. Facts contain a great deal of poetry, but you can't use too many of them without damaging your literature. I love all literature, and as long as I am a doctor of literature--I have suggested to you for twenty years I have been diligently trying to improve my own literature, and now, by virtue of the University of Oxford, I mean to doctor everybody else's.
- Speech to the Savage Club, London, 7/6/1907
...if you are going to find out the facts of a thing, what's the sense in guessing out what ain't the facts and wasting ammunition? I didn't lose no sleep.
- Tom Sawyer, Detective
Always dress a fact in tights, never in an ulster.
- Life on the Mississippi
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