Heads up: Top comment and controversy

QUIZ: The new Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations: do you know who said what?

The fifth edition of the Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations is released today.

Oscar Wilde came out as the most quoted and quotable (fittingly, it's also his birthday). George Bernard Shaw and Noel Coward took second and third place - with Woody Allen as the only living person to make the top 10.

Bumbling Boris Johnson managed to make the top 5 most quoted politicians - with Churchill taking the top spot (Maggie came in fourth).

The author, broadcaster and former MP Gyles Brandreth, also put together his own top 10 favourite quotations of all time. We're pleased to see former Independent columnist Miles Kington make it in...see below for the full list.

To test your knowledge of one-liners, we've created a quiz. So...who said what? See how many you can get right.

 

Gyles Brandreth's top 10 favourite quotes:

1. “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” – Jane Austen (1775–1817)

2. Nancy Astor: “If I were your wife I would put poison in your coffee!” Winston Churchill: “And if I were your husband I would drink it.”

3. “I never forget a face, but in your case I’ll be glad to make an exception.” – Groucho Marx (1890-1977)

4. “Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before.” – Mae West(1892–1980)

5. “To lose one parent, Mr. Worthing, may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness.” – Oscar Wilde (1854–1900)

6. “If not actually disgruntled, he was far from being gruntled.” – P. G. Wodehouse (1881–1975)

7. “If God had wanted us to bend over, He would have put diamonds on the floor.” – Joan Rivers (1933–)

8. “Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.” – Miles Kington (1941–2008)

9. “If you lived in Sheffield and were called Sebastian, you had to learn to run fast at a very early stage.” – Sebastian Coe (1956–)

10. “The email of the species is deadlier than the mail.” – Stephen Fry(1957–)

React Now

Read Next
Terry Sue-Patt as Benny in the BBC children’s soap ‘Grange Hill’  

Children's TV shows like Grange Hill used to connect us to the real world

Grace Dent
An Indian bookseller waits for customers at a roadside stall on World Book and Copyright Day in Mumbai  

Novel translation lets us know what is really happening in the world

Boyd Tonkin
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine