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I am pleased to belatedly announce the winners of our ‘Words to Muse and Amuse’ competition. Apologies for the delay in reporting these but the winners wouldn’t respond to our emails!

The first prize winner, of Microsoft Office Ultimate 2007 Edition for the PC, worth £610.99 / $818.00, is Gary Clarkson from California.

His winning quotation was the following, which we felt was particularly apt in the current economic crisis:

“A banker is a fellow who lends you his umbrella when the sun is shining and wants it back the minute it starts to rain.”

Mark Twain (1835 -1910) American writer and humourist. He said the above around the time of his imminent bankruptcy in 1891.

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There were four runner ups. Here is the quotation submitted by each one and a link to one of their favourite websites, if provided:

“I believe that it is as much a right and duty for women to do something with their lives as for men and we are not going to be satisfied with such frivolous parts as you give us.”

Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) American Writer

Submitted by: Frances Heaton. Recommended website is her daughter’s tanning one: Tan & Glam.


“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.”

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 – 1900), German philosopher

Submitted by: Kier Marston. Recommended website: Krav Maga London.


“We are not amused”

Queen Victoria (1819 – 1901), British monarch

Submitted by: Jeremy Sleightholm


“I have nothing to declare except my genius”

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) Irish playwright, author, poet :

Submitted by: T. Jenner


The figures whose quotations we selected as the best dominated the hundreds of entries. Dozens of people entered quotations from Louisa May Alcott, Nietzsche and Oscar Wilde, as well as the likes of Jane Austen and Benjamin Disraeli.

Disappointingly, almost half the entries did not adhere to the guidelines. Over 50 people, for instance, submitted quotations from the 20th century, which disqualified their entries: always worth reading the rules before you enter a competition!

I’ll end with a quotation submitted by Diana Cotter, which gives us something to chew over:

“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery.”

Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870), English novelist


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