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Over 4,600 Quotes About Food, Beverages, Agriculture and the Pleasures of the Table

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Fish Quotes

“A chub is the worst fish that swims.”
Izaak Walton (1593-1683) 'The Compleat Angler'


“I know that the human being and the fish can coexist peacefully.”
George W. Bush, 43rd U.S. President(1946- )


“Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to fish and he'll sit in a boat with a fishing pole and drink beer all day.”
Lorena McCourtney, 'Invisible'


“Knowledge does not keep any better than fish.”
Alfred North Whitehead, English mathematician, philosopher.  (1861-1947)


“There's a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore looking like an idiot.”
Steven Wright, Comedian, actor, writer. (1955- )


“The vapour of the boiled fish arose like incense from the shrine of a barbarian idol.”
Nathaniel Hawthorne 'The House of Seven Gables' (1851)


"Fish and guests stink in three days."
Benjamin Franklin, ‘Poor Richard's Almanac’


"In the hands of an able cook, fish can become an inexhaustible source of perpetual delight."
Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826)


“....nothing can more effectually destroy the appetite, or disgrace the cook, than fish sent to table imperfectly cleaned. Handle it lightly, and never throw it roughly about, so as to bruise it.”
Eliza Acton, ‘Modern Cookery for Private Families’ (1845)


"Fish, to taste right, must swim three times -in water, in butter, and in wine."
Polish proverb


"Ruling a large kingdom, is like cooking a small fish."
(Handle gently and never overdo it)
Lao-tse, Chinese philosopher (6th century BC)


“ is possible to exaggerate and to be duped by gastronomic nincompoops who write of gourmets with a sense of taste so refined that they can tell whether a fish was caught under or between the bridges, and distinguish by its superior flavor the thigh on which the partridge leans while asleep.”
Angelo Pellegrini, 'The Unprejudiced Palate' (1948)


“A countryman between 2 Lawyers, is like a fish between two cats.”
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) ‘Poor Richard's Almanac’


    "There was an Old Man of Marseilles,
    Whose daughters wore bottle-green veils;
    They caught several fish,
         which they put in a dish,
    And sent to their Pa' at Marseilles."

    Edward Lear, English artist, writer; known for his 'literary nonsense' & limericks  (1812-1888)


“....shellfish are the prime cause of the decline of morals and the adaptation of an extravagant lifestyle. Indeed of the whole realm of Nature the sea is in many ways the most harmful to the stomach, with its great variety of dishes and tasty fish.”
Pliny the Elder (A.D. 23-79)
(‘Choice Cuts’ by Mark Kurlansky)


“Fish in the hands of a skilled cook can become an inexhaustible source of gustatory pleasures.”
Jean-Antheleme Brillat-Savarin (1755-1826)
‘The Physiology of Taste’ (1825)


"Soup and fish explain half the emotions of human life."
Sydney Smith


"I'm in the mood for fish, but I don't want anything that tastes fishy."
anonymous restaurant customer


"A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a king, and eat of the fish that hath fed of that worm."
William Shakespeare, ‘Hamlet’


“A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.”
Gloria Steinem (?)


“Fish is meant to tempt as well as nourish, and everything that lives in water is seductive.”
Jean-Paul Aron


“Fish and guests in three days are stale.”
John Lyly, English author ‘Euphues’ (1554?-1606)


“Fish is held out to be one of the greatest luxuries of the table and not only necessary, but even indispensable at all dinners where there is any pretence of excellence or fashion.”
Isabella Beeton (1836-1865)


“Agassiz does recommend authors to eat fish, because the phosphorus in it makes brains. But I cannot help you to a decision about the amount you need to eat. Perhaps a couple of whales would be enough.”
Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens) (1835-1910)


“Fish is the only food that is considered spoiled once it smells like what it is.”
P. J. O'Rourke (1947 - )


“At high tide the fish eat ants; at low tide the ants eat fish.”
Thai Proverb


“I refuse to believe that trading recipes is silly. Tunafish casserole is at least as real as corporate stock.”
Barbara Grizzuti Harrison


“We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely, the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlic.”
Bible, Numbers 11


“What will be the death of me are buillabaisses, food spiced with pimiento, shellfish, and a load of exquisite rubbish which I eat in disproportionate quantities.”
Emile Zola, French writer (1840-1902)


“Fishing is pretty good.....We had only to throw a line in the water to catch forty or fifty fish of the kind called here barbue (catfish). There is none like it in France. Travelers and poor people live on it very comfortably, for it can be eaten, and is very good cooked in water without sauce.”
Father Dollier and Father Galinée, travelling with La Salle (1669-1670)


“Fish, to taste right, must swim three times -in water, in butter, and in wine.”
Polish proverb


    "There was a Young Lady of Wales,
    Who caught a large fish without scales;
    When she lifted her hook,
         she exclaimed, 'Only look!'
    That extatic Young Lady of Wales."

    Edward Lear, English artist, writer; known for his 'literary nonsense' & limericks  (1812-1888)


“Monkfish is called the poor man's lobster. As long as people never see what it looks like whole, they love it.”
Werner Auer, Executive chef, Hyatt Regency Hotel, Houston


“If I go down in for anything in history, I would like to be known as the person who convinced the American people that catfish is one of the finest eating fishes in the world.”
Willard Scott (The Today Show)


“A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a king, and eat of the fish that hath fed of that worm.”
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) ‘Hamlet’


“An egg of one hour old, bread of one day, a goat of one month, wine of six months, flesh of a year, fish of ten years and a wife of twenty years, a friend among a hundred, are the best of all number.”
John Wodroephe, English commentator. 'Spared Hours,' 1623


“Fish should smell like the ocean. If they smell like fish, it's too late.”


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