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Brendan Behan

  • Irish dramatist
  • Born February 9, 1923
  • Died March 20, 1964

Brendan Francis Aidan Behan (christened Francis Behan) ( BEE-ən; Irish: Breandán Ó Beacháin; 9 February 1923 – 20 March 1964) was an Irish poet, short story writer, novelist and playwright who wrote in both English and Irish. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest Irish writers of all time.An Irish republican and a volunteer in the Irish Republican Army, Behan was born in Dublin into a staunchly republican family becoming a member of the IRA's youth organisation Fianna Éireann at the age of fourteen.


Ah, bless you, Sister, may all your sons be bishops.




It's not that the Irish are cynical. It's rather that they have a wonderful lack of respect for everything and everybody.




What an author likes to write most is his signature on the back of a cheque.




I have a total irreverence for anything connected with society except that which makes the roads safer, the beer stronger, the food cheaper and the old men and old women warmer in the winter and happier in the summer.




At the innermost core of all loneliness is a deep and powerful yearning for union with one's lost self.




Other people have a nationality. The Irish and the Jews have a psychosis.




The most important things to do in the world are to get something to eat, something to drink and somebody to love you.




When I came back to Dublin I was courtmartialed in my absence and sentenced to death in my absence, so I said they could shoot me in my absence.




One drink is too many for me and a thousand not enough.




I am a daylight atheist.




The big difference between sex for money and sex for free is that sex for money usually costs a lot less.




I wish I'd been a mixed infant.




The Bible was a consolation to a fellow alone in the old cell. The lovely thin paper with a bit of matress stuffing in it, if you could get a match, was as good a smoke as I ever tasted.




Critics are like eunuchs in a harem; they know how it's done, they've seen it done every day, but they're unable to do it themselves.




If it was raining soup, the Irish would go out with forks.




Inspirations never go in for long engagements; they demand immediate marriage to action.




If you greatly desire something, have the guts to stake everything on obtaining it.




A man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him.




Shakespeare said pretty well everything and what he left out, James Joyce, with a judge from meself, put in.




No yesterdays are ever wasted for those who give themselves to today.




What the hell difference does it make, left or right? There were good men lost on both sides.




New York is my Lourdes, where I go for spiritual refreshment... a place where you're least likely to be bitten by a wild goat.




There is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary.




Every man, through fear, mugs his aspirations a dozen times a day.




If you accept your limitations you go beyond them.




A quotation in a speech, article or book is like a rifle in the hands of an infantryman. It speaks with authority.




I am a drinker with writing problems.




The prospect of success in achieving our most cherished dream is not without its terrors. Who is more deprived and alone than the man who has achieved his dream?




It is a good deed to forget a poor joke.




All publicity is good, except an obituary notice.




I have never seen a situation so dismal that a policeman couldn't make it worse.



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