100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

Henry Louis Mencken (September 12, 1880 – January 29, 1956) was an American journalist, essayist, satirist, cultural critic, and scholar of American English. He commented widely on the social scene, literature, music, prominent politicians, and contemporary movements. His satirical reporting on the Scopes Trial, which he dubbed the “Monkey Trial,” also gained him attention. As a scholar, Mencken is known for The American Language, a multi-volume study of how the English language is spoken in the United States. As an admirer of the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, he was an outspoken opponent of organized religion, theism, populism, and representative democracy, the last of which he viewed as a system in which inferior men dominated their superiors. Mencken was a supporter of scientific progress and was critical of osteopathy and chiropractic. He was also an open critic of economics. His longtime home in the Union Square neighborhood of West Baltimore was turned into a city museum, the H. L. Mencken House. His papers were distributed among various city and university libraries, with the largest collection held in the Mencken Room at the central branch of Baltimore’s Enoch Pratt Free Library. We bring you the compilation of the best HL Mencken Quotes, hope you like it.

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100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

The best years are the forties; after fifty a man begins to deteriorate, but in the forties he is at the maximum of his villainy.— H. L. Mencken

The cynics are right nine times out of ten.— H. L. Mencken

Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.— H. L. Mencken

Philosophy consists very largely of one philosopher arguing that all others are jackasses. He usually proves it, and I should add that he also usually proves that he is one himself.— H. L. Mencken

For it is mutual trust, even more than mutual interest that holds human associations together. Our friends seldom profit us but they make us feel safe… Marriage is a scheme to accomplish exactly that same end.— H. L. Mencken

War will never cease until babies begin to come into the world with larger cerebrums and smaller adrenal glands.— H. L. Mencken

Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who would want to live in an institution.— H. L. Mencken

Imagine the Creator as a low comedian, and at once the world becomes explicable.— H. L. Mencken

Wife: a former sweetheart.— H. L. Mencken

The capacity of human beings to bore one another seems to be vastly greater than that of any other animal.— H. L. Mencken

Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage.H.L. Mencken

The one permanent emotion of the inferior man is fear  fear of the unknown, the complex, the inexplicable. What he wants beyond everything else is safety.— H. L. Mencken

A good politician is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar.— H. L. Mencken

There comes a time when a man must spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats— H. L. Mencken

Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good.— H. L. Mencken

Platitude: an idea (a) that is admitted to be true by everyone, and (b) that is not true.— H. L. Mencken

To die for an idea; it is unquestionably noble. But how much nobler it would be if men died for ideas that were true!— H. L. Mencken

If I ever marry, it will be on a sudden impulse  as a man shoots himself.— H. L. Mencken

Men have a much better time of it than women. For one thing, they marry later, for another thing, they die earlier.— H. L. Mencken

100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

God is the immemorial refuge of the incompetent, thehelpless, the miserable. They find not only sanctuary in His arms, but also a kind of superiority, soothing to their macerated egos; He will set them above their betters.— H. L. Mencken

Man is never honestly the fatalist, nor even the stoic. He fights his fate, often desperately. He is forever entering bold exceptions to the rulings of the bench of  gods. This fighting, no doubt, makes for human progress, for it favors the strong and the brave. It also makes for beauty, for lesser men try to escape from  a hopeless   and intolerable world by creating a more lovely one of their own.— H. L. Mencken

Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.— H. L. Mencken

We must respect the other fellow’s religion,but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart.— H. L. Mencken

Never let your inferiors do you a favor  it will be extremely costly.— H. L. Mencken

Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats.— H. L. Mencken

The first kiss is stolen by the man; the last is begged by the woman.— H. L. Mencken

Husbands never become good; they merely become proficient.— H. L. Mencken

The only really happy folk are married women and single men.— H. L. Mencken

Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.— H. L. Mencken

Under democracy, one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule and both commonly succeed, and are right.— H. L. Mencken

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And what is a good citizen? Simply one who never says, does or thinks anything that  is unusual. Schools are maintained in order to bring this uniformity up to the highest possible point. A school is a hopper into which children are heaved while they are still young and tender; therein they are pressed into certain  standard  shapes  and covered from head to heels with official rubberstamps.— H. L. Mencken

A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.— H. L. Mencken

It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office.— H. L. Mencken

Criticism is prejudice made plausible.— H. L. Mencken

Happiness is the china shop; love is the  bull.— H. L. Mencken

In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican.— H. L. Mencken

The basic fact about human existence is not that it is a tragedy, but that it is a bore. It is not so much a war as an endless standing in line.— H. L. Mencken

It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth when you know that you would lie  if you were in his place.— H. L. Mencken

100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

Archbishop: a Christian ecclesiastic of a rank superior to that attained by Christ.— H. L. Mencken

Sunday: A day given over by Americans to wishing they were dead and in heaven, and that their neighbors were dead and in hell.— H. L. Mencken

The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.— H. L. Mencken

A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.— H. L. Mencken

There is always an easy solution to every human problem  neat, plausible, and wrong.— H. L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.— H. L. Mencken

Strike an average between what a woman thinks of her husband a month before she marries him and what she thinks of him a year afterward, and you will have the truth about him.— H. L. Mencken

I believe that all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is largely a waste of time.— H. L. Mencken

Wife: one who is sorry she did it, but would undoubtedly do it again.— H. L. Mencken

It is impossible to believe that the same God who permitted His own son to die a bachelor regards celibacy as an actual sin.— H. L. Mencken

Judge: a law student who marks his own papers.— H. L. Mencken

A poet more than thirty years old is simply an overgrown child.— H. L. Mencken

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.— H. L. Mencken

Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under.— H. L. Mencken

Creator: a comedian whose audience is afraid to laugh.— H. L. Mencken

Selfrespect: the secure feeling that no one, as yet, is suspicious.— H. L. Mencken

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable.— H. L. Mencken

Legend: A lie that has attained the dignity of age.— H. L. Mencken

100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another.— H. L. Mencken

Any man who afflicts the human race with ideas must be prepared to see them misunderstood.— H. L. Mencken

New York: A thirdrate Babylon.— H. L. Mencken

Unquestionably, there is progress. The average American now pays out twice as much in taxes as he formerly got in wages.— H. L. Mencken

Historian: an  unsuccessful novelist.— H. L. Mencken

Lawer: one who protects us against robbery by taking away the temptation.— H. L. Mencken

In the United States, doing good has come to be, like patriotism, a favorite device of persons with something to sell.— H. L. Mencken

College football would be more interesting if the faculty played instead of the students  there would be a great increase in broken arms, legs and necks.— H. L. Mencken

Optimist — The sort of man who marries his sister’s best friend.— H. L. Mencken

Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking.— H. L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy (1949)

taking one with another, no special talent for the business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office.— H. L. Mencken

Have you been inspired by these HL Mencken quotes. If you have been enjoying our HL Mencken quotes compilation then do check out our collection of quotes from Authors similar to our HL Mencken quotes collection.

Bachelors know more about women than married men; if they didn’t, they’d be married too.— H. L. Mencken

After all, all he did was string together a lot of old, wellknown quotations.— H. L. Mencken, on Shakespeare

Man is a natural polygamist: he always has one woman leading him by the nose, and another hanging on to his coattails.— H. L. Mencken

Jury: a group of twelve men who, having lied to the judge about their hearing, health and business engagements, have failed to fool him.— H. L. Mencken

Say what you will about the Ten Commandments, you must always come back to the pleasant fact that there are only ten of them.— H. L. Mencken

The chief value of money lies in the fact that one lives in a world in which it is overestimated.— H. L. Mencken

The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.— H. L. Mencken

It is the dull man who is always sure, and the sure man who is always dull.— H. L. Mencken

100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

A man always remembers his first love with special tenderness, but after that he begins to bunch them.— H. L. Mencken

No normal man ever fell in love after thirty when the kidneys begin to disintegrate.— H. L. Mencken

Misogynist: A man who hates women as much as women hate one another.— H. L. Mencken

If I had my way, any man guilty of golf would be ineligible for any office of trust in the United States.— H. L. Mencken

…no man of genuinely superior intelligence has ever been an actor. Even supposing  a young man of appreciable mental powers to be lured upon the stage, as philosophers are occasionally lured into bordellos, his mind would be inevitably and almost immediately destroyed by the gaudy nonsense issuing from his mouth every night.— H. L. Mencken

It is even harder for the average ape to believe that he has descended from man. — H. L. Mencken

It is impossible to imagine Goethe or Beethoven being good at billiards or golf.— H. L. Mencken

Love is like war: easy to begin but very hard to stop.— H. L. Mencken

He marries best who puts it off until it is too late.— H. L. Mencken

Conscience is a motherinlaw whose visit never ends— H. L. Mencken

To be in love is merely to be in a state of perpetual anesthesia  to mistake an ordinary young woman for a goddess.H.L. Mencken

Men are the only animals that devote themselves, day in and day out, to making one another unhappy. It is an art like any other. Its virtuosi are called altruists.— H. L. Mencken

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.H.L. Mencken

All successful newspapers are ceaselessly querulous and bellicose. They never defend anyone or anything if they can help it; if the job is forced on them, they tackle it by denouncing someone or something else.— H. L. Mencken

No married man is genuinely happy if he has to drink worse whisky than he used to drink when he was single.— H. L. Mencken

Alimony: the ransom the happy pay to the devil.— H. L. Mencken

Those who can  do. Those who can’t  teach.— H. L. Mencken

It is now quite lawful for a Catholic woman to avoid pregnancy by a resort to mathematics, though she is still forbidden to resort to physics or chemistry.— H. L. Mencken

100+ HL Mencken Quotes to discover new aspects in life

The cosmos is a gigantic flywheel making 10,000 revolutions per minute. Man is a sick fly taking a dizzy ride on it.— H. L. Mencken

Democracy: The worship of jackals by jackasses.— H. L. Mencken

Immorality: the morality of those who are having a better time.— H. L. Mencken

Henry James would have been vastly improved as a novelist by a few whiffs of the Chicago stockyard.— H. L. Mencken

Congress consists of one third, more or less, scoundrels; two thirds, more or less, idiots; and three thirds, more or less, poltroons.— H. L. Mencken

All [zoos] actually offer to the public in return for the taxes spent upon them is a form of idle and witless amusement, compared to which a visit to a penitentiary, or even to a State legislature in session, is informing, stimulating and ennobling.— H. L. Mencken

Wealth is any income that is at least one hundred dollars a year more than the income of one’s wife’s sister’s husband.— H. L. Mencken

Every man is thoroughly happy twice in his life: just after he has met his first love, and just after he has left his last one.— H. L. Mencken

Theology is the effort to explain the unknowable in terms of the not worth knowing.— H. L. Mencken

Have you been inspired by these HL Mencken quotes. If you have been enjoying our HL Mencken quotes compilation then do check out our collection of quotes from Authors similar to our HL Mencken quotes collection.

The chief contribution of Protestantism to human thought is its massive proof that God is a bore.— H. L. Mencken

We are here and it is now. Further than that all human knowledge is moonshine.— H. L. Mencken

The most common of all follies is to believe passionately in the palpably not true. It is the chief occupation of mankind.— H. L. Mencken

thanking a loving Father that it is not hydrophobia.— H. L. Mencken

I detest converts almost as much as I do missionaries.— H. L. Mencken

For centuries, theologians have been explaining the unknowable in terms of thenot worthknowing.— H. L. Mencken

When women kiss, it always reminds me of prizefighters shaking hands.— H. L. Mencken

The world always makes the assumption that the exposure of an error is identical  with the discovery of truththat the error and truth are simply opposite. They are nothing of the sort. What the world turns to, when it is cured on one error, is usually simply another error, and maybe one worse than the first one.— H. L. Mencken

We hope this compilation of quotes took you out of your grim and helped you to reflect on yourself. There are times in our lives when pausing, getting to know who you are on a deeper level, and evaluating yourself and your progress can really open up all kinds of creative and inspirational pathways. Keep Hustling and Follow Quotes Inferno for more such quotes. Feel free to share your favorite with your friends or in the comments below.

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