banner

Directory of Mark Twain's maxims, quotations, and various opinions:

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

LETTERS

When you get an exasperating letter what happens? If you are young, you answer it promptly, instantly--and mail the thing you have written. At forty what do you do? By that time you have found out that a letter written in passion is a mistake in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred.
- Mark Twain, a Biography

An old, cold letter ....makes you wonder how you could ever have got into such a rage about nothing.
- Mark Twain, a Biography

Mark Twain stamp
From the Dave Thomson collection

 

The most useful and interesting letters we get here from home are from children seven or eight years old...They write simply and naturally and without strain for effect. They tell all they know, and stop.
- article in Grass Valley, Ca. Daily National, 12/6/1869

The reason I dread writing letters is because I am so apt to get to slinging wisdom & forget to let up. Thus much precious time is lost.
- Letter to James Redpath, 6/15/1871

The following quote is often misattributed to Mark Twain:

"I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not had time to make it shorter." This quote is by the 17th-century French philosopher and mathematician, Blaise Pascal (1623-62), written in a letter to a friend. The original French version was: "Je n'ai fait cette lettre - ci plus longue que parce que je n'ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte"

 

banner logo

Quotations | Newspaper Articles | Special Features | Links | Search