The most wasted of all days is that on which one has not laughed.
[La plus perdue de toutes les journées est celle où l’on n’a pas ri.]
Products of Perfected Civilization [Produits de la Civilisation Perfectionée], Part 1 Maxims and Thoughts [Maximes et Pensées], ch. 1, # 80 (1795) [tr. Morley (1887)]
Often attributed to a more contemporary comedian (Groucho Marx, Charlie Chaplin) or writers such as Ben Burroughs, Grigori Alexandrov. It is arguably a clear enough sentiment that others might reinvent it.
(Source (French)). Alternate translation:
The most lost of all days, is that in which we have not laughed.
The most completely lost of all days is that on which one has not laughed.
The worst wasted of all days is that during which one has not laughed.
[tr. Hutchinson (1902), "The Cynic's Breviary"]
Of all days, the day on which one has not laughed is the one most surely wasted.
[tr. Mathers (1926)]
That of all days is the most completely wasted in which one did not once laugh.
[tr. Merwin (1969)]
The day that we have most lost is the one on which we have not laughed.
More history of the quotation: A Day Without Laughter is a Day Wasted – Quote Investigator®
- "A day without laughter is a day wasted." [Chaplin]
- "The most lost of all days is that in which one has not laughed."
- "The most wasted day of all is that in which we have not laughed."
Added on 19-May-11 | Last updated 27-Apr-23
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