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Quotations about Mustaches


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A man without a moustache is like a cup of tea without sugar. ~English proverb


A kiss without a moustache is like beef without mustard. ~Italian proverb


But he wore a moustache — a shaggy moustache too: nothing in the meek and merciful way, but quite in the fierce and scornful style: the regular Satanic sort of thing — and he wore, besides, a vast quantity of unbrushed hair. ~Charles Dickens, The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit, 1842


But, to a brave man, honour is dearer than life; and to the major, his whiskers were dearer than honour itself! ~Cassio, "Memoir of a Pair of Whiskers," in The Parterre of Fiction, Poetry, History, Literature, and the Fine Arts, Vol. I, 1834  [This short story is hilarious, about a woman who sabotages her man's mustache to prevent him from marrying another woman who is attracted to his facial hair! –tg]


You're a model gentleman... Bon jour, Seigneur Don Monsieur Moustache Whiskerando! ~May Agnes Fleming, The Gypsy Queen's Vow, 1875


He is weak in two places who shaves his whiskers and wears a moustache — he insults Nature to please the women. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897


The man with a moustache is blamed for the thieving of the moustacheless. ~Bihār Proverbs (India), compiled & translated by John Christian, 1891


A particular face shows determination merely by the turn of the moustache; but the moustache is robbed of all its expression unless it be worn by itself. Accompanied by the other parts of the beard, it loses its originality, it ceases to be a marked characteristic of will or temper. ~Charles Blanc, Art in Ornament and Dress, 1875


His mouth as perfect as Cupid's bow in form, and as cherry-red in colour as hers. Bright curly hair; bright sparkling blue-gray eyes; a boy's blush and manner; neither whisker nor moustache, unless a little light-brown fur on his upper lip deserved the latter title... ~Thomas Hardy, A Pair of Blue Eyes, 1872


There are but few sights in all this world more pathetic and sublime than to notice a poor but virtuous youth tenderly nursing a struggling MUSTACHE. ~Josh Billings, revised by H. Montague


The variations which this appendage throws into the expression of the face are numerous. Molière, following the King's example, cultivated on his upper lip a thin thread of moustache, which showed the entire outline of his amiable and sensitive mouth, and it only wanted a few cuts of the scissors and razor to give an external form to the refinement of his genius, to that raillery without bitterness, to that extreme kindness, which characterised him. ~Charles Blanc, Art in Ornament and Dress, 1875


He had an almost swarthy complexion, with full lips, badly moulded, though red and smooth, above which was a well-groomed black moustache with curled points, though his age could not be more than three- or four-and-twenty. Despite the touches of barbarism in his contours, there was a singular force in the gentleman's face... ~Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman, 1891


If they were richer, one would say, "They are dandies"; if they were poorer, one would say, "They are idlers"... At that period a dandy was composed of a tall collar, a big cravat, a watch with trinkets, three vests of different colors, worn one on top of the other... Add to this, high shoes with little irons on the heels, a tall hat with a narrow brim, hair worn in a tuft, an enormous cane, and conversation set off by puns of Potier. Over all, spurs and a mustache. At that epoch mustaches indicated the bourgeois, and spurs the pedestrian. The provincial dandy wore the longest of spurs and the fiercest of mustaches. ~Victor Hugo, Les Misérables, 1862, translated from French by Isabel F. Hapgood


When it grows naturally, the moustache is always a sign of a manly temperament. It never, or at any rate seldom, happens that it is bristling, hirsuta, in gentle and thoughtful characters, and it is rarely rounded, turned under, or softly curled in men of rough natures born for contradiction and conflict. ~Charles Blanc, Art in Ornament and Dress, 1875


To draw it to a fine point, as was done under the Empire... is to give the face of the wearer a factitious and evanescent expression, since the points cannot be kept stiff without the use of a cosmetic, easily detected and soon melted. ~Charles Blanc, Art in Ornament and Dress, 1875


Although I'm at a loss as to what's behind this specific spike in mustache mania... I have noticed a particular proliferation of one very specific style of tonsorial topiary — the meticulously groomed and shaped, hipster-appropriated handlebar — which has become so ubiquitous in popular culture that walking down the street is starting to feel like venturing into a carnival tent into a Wild West saloon and out through a blacksmith's shop of yore. ~Adam Tschorn, "What's behind the modern-day mustache mania?," Los Angeles Times, 2013


Moustaches resemble a problem of geometry worked on the cheek with a piece of charcoal... ~Richard Doe, "Human Nature in Chunks: Modern Clerks," 1855


If you’re ever in a jam, a crayon scrunched up under your nose makes a good pretend mustache. ~Phil’s-osophy by Phil Dunphy, Modern Family, "Schooled," 2012, written by Steven Levitan & Dan O’Shannon [S4, E2]


Double cappuccino, half-caff, nonfat milk, with just enough foam to be aesthetically pleasing but not so much that it leaves a moustache. ~Frasier, "A Mid-Winter Night's Dream," 1994, written by Chuck Ranberg & Anne Flett-Giordano [S1, E17, Niles]


Well, and so you've joined "the movement,"
      And have laid out lots of cash
      In Macassar oil and bear's grease
      Coaching up your pet moustache.
You look just as though your eyebrows
      From above had had a slip,
      And in falling down had settled
      Snugly on your upper lip.
Let me warn you—with the ladies
      You'll be in a pretty pickle;
      For you can have no idea
      How those horrid things do tickle...
~A Master of Hearts, "To a Youth with a Moustache," New and Original Valentines, Serious & Satirical, Sublime & Ridiculous, On All the Ordinary Names, Professions, Trades, Etc., 1857


Bandy-legged Borochio Mustachio Whiskerfuscius, the bald but brave Bombardino of Bagdad... ~“Try These on Thick Tongues,” Queries, 1889


Gaubert was a little man and all moustache. ~Jean Giono (1895–1970), Regain, 1930, translated from French by Henri Fluchè & Geoffrey Myers, Harvest, 1939


His face wore a pleasant expression; his lips parted in a smile beneath his budding mustache. ~M. E. M. David, "A Miracle," in Harper's New Monthly Magazine, 1895


The sight of the poker elicited one of those faint smiles which he always managed to bury away in his moustache... ~Ronald A. Knox, Other Eyes Than Ours, 1926


A dark mustache shaded his upper lip, and a strange, nameless beauty lit up and softened his handsome face whenever he smiled. Adored by the ladies, envied by the men. ~May Agnes Fleming, The Gypsy Queen's Vow, 1875


I'm one of those people, who when I draw birds I just draw flying mustaches. ~Author unknown


I moustache you a question, but I'll shave it for later. ~Internet meme, c. 2010


Yes, indeed, my Whiskerandos,
      I declare it makes me laugh—
      You seem wedded to your whiskers,
      For they're quite your better half.
Were you lost, I'd advertise you
      (And just think how folks would stare)
      As a fragment of humanity
      Between two lumps of hair!...
~A Master of Hearts, "To an Individual with Whiskers," New and Original Valentines, Serious & Satirical, Sublime & Ridiculous, On All the Ordinary Names, Professions, Trades, Etc., 1857


Guys are lucky because they get to grow mustaches. I wish I could. It's like having a little pet for your face. ~Anita Wise, unverified  [Or according to Old Hippy Paul, it's more like having a hobby on your upper lip. –tg]


My facial hair is imperative. I put the must in mustache. ~Jarod Kintz, Whenever You're Gone, I'm Here For You, 2012


Hitler really ruined that mustache for everybody because, it's really, it's an interesting mustache, and now nobody can wear it. ~Curb Your Enthusiasm, "Larry vs. Michael J. Fox," 2011, written by David, Berg, Mandel, & Schaffer [S8, E10, Larry]


So when people see mustaches now, they think hipster, not Hitler. And that, people, is the power of creative rebranding. ~black‑ish, "Crazy Mom," 2014, written by Gail Lerner, Njeri Brown, & Devanshi Patel  [S1, E4]


Weep for the fate of Serjeant Thin,
A man of a desperate courage was he,
More he rejoiced in the battle's din,
Than in all the mess-room revelry;
But he died at last of no ugly gash,—
He choked on a hair of his own mustache!
~“The Fate of Serjeant Thin” (A new original Ballad, founded on Fact. Edin Lit Jour.), in The Olio; or, Museum of Entertainment, 1831


Even the swallowing the moustache by Whiskerandos, which has so often been denounced as "too broad" was taken from an accident which really happened on the first night of Leigh Hunt's play of A Legend of Florence to a Mr. Moore, who played the principal character in it, and who was obliged to leave the stage for some minutes, being totally unable to proceed with his part. ~J. Brander Matthews, "Sheridan’s ‘Critic,’" in Tinsleys' Magazine, 1872


It would be trifling to dwell on the comical expression of a man's face when one whisker was taken off clean, and the other was left standing... ~Cassio, "Memoir of a Pair of Whiskers," in The Parterre of Fiction, Poetry, History, Literature, and the Fine Arts, Vol. I, 1834


Our French professor is simply a darling. His moustache would give you kerwollops of the heart. ~L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables, 1908  [a little altered –tg]


Millie looked up. Her pulse went up to fever-heat; her heart leaped into her throat. There at last stood her ideal man — he of whom in the careless days of girlhood, she had dreamed so often. If he had been made to order, she could hardly have been better pleased. Tall, graceful, splendidly proportioned, he seemed a very prince in bearing. His skin was a clear olive, with the crimson burning through upon each cheek; his hair lay in thick masses, and was of that purple-black hue which you see on a raven's wing; his moustache was superb, soft, silky, dark, and with such an exquisite wave. ~Caroline A. Soule, "Mollie's Ideal," in The Ladies' Repository, 1863  [of the young Spanish nobleman, Don Carlos –tg]


I wouldn't marry a man if our names didn't go well together. Two syllables wouldn't sound a bit nice, but I shouldn't mind marrying a man with a surname of three syllables. Of course he must have a moustache. Even if a man was a handsome poet, and had lovely eyes, and could sing like a nightingale, but hadn't a moustache, I wouldn't for the world so much as look at him. No close-shaven man need apply. ~Grant Allen, This Mortal Coil, 1888  [Winifred. Text a little altered. –tg]


It was hard to tell in what the charm lay. It might have been in the moustache, or at least a woman might have said so, for we believe all women have a failing for handsome moustaches. ~Sue Chestnutwood, Malbrook, 1868


I love—yes, I love—how I love my moustache,
Which I twirl round my finger as I look in the glass...
I've tried both my whiskers and beard in succession,
In hopes on the ladies to make an impression...
You may call it a door-mat, you may call it but bristles,
Or compare me to an animal that feeds upon thistles;
But to all such comparisons I give but a laugh,
For do I not love thee, my splendid moustache?
~Robert Hall, "My Moustache," 1867


He took a seat at her side with respectful coldness, although he was trembling with desire, to such an extent had this mysterious and seductive creature in a few minutes succeeded in disturbing his senses. He took her hand and gently removed the glove, then carried the slender white fingers to his mouth and began to kiss them, one after another, with caressing devotion. Finally he reached the wrist and the tapering arm, grazing with his mustache the satin-like flesh that thrilled slightly beneath his ardent touch. ~Georges Ohnet, L'âme de Pierre, 1890, translated from French by E. P. Robins


Brother, dost mark
That puff of hair upon Alonzo's lip...
The time shall come, and we shall live to see it,
When, for that multiplicity of hair,
Piled, against nature, on an urchin's face,
The maidens shall give up their hearts! nay, more
Not only shall a "whiskered pandour" take
His choicest choice among them—but the jades
Shall love according to the mustache's fulness:
Love him alone who cultivates their growth—
And love no longer than they flourish there!
~Whiskerandos, a Tragedy, quoted in The Parterre of Fiction, Poetry, History, Literature, and the Fine Arts, Vol. I, 1834


She'll be cured of moustaches, or I'm no prophet. The moral effect will tell upon our silly young ladies, whose heads are turned with a foreign accent and a hairy lip. ~T. S. Arthur, "Marrying a Count," Off-Hand Sketches, A Little Dashed with Humour, 1851



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Original post date 2013 October 2nd
Last saved 2021 Apr 16 Fri 19:36 PDT
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