In praise of beer … some be[er]atitudes

  • Not all chemicals are bad. Without chemicals such as hydrogen and oxygen, for example, there would be no way to make water, a vital ingredient in beer. – Dave Barry
  • Nothing quenches the thirst like a wheat beer, or sharpens the appetite like an India pale ale. Nothing goes as well with seafood as a dry porter or stout, or accompanies chocolate like an imperial stout. Nothing soothes like a barley wine. These are just a few of the specialty styles of beer. – Michael Jackson
  • So popular is beer, the world’s best-selling alcoholic drink, that it is often taken for granted. Yet scientific analysis shows that a glass of beer has within it as many aromas and flavors as fine wine. Not everyone understands this, but an increasing number of people do. – Michael Jackson
  • Whoever makes a poor beer is transferred to the dung-hill. – Edict, City of Danzig, 11th Century
  • Beer drinking doesn’t do half the harm as love-making. – Anonymous
  • Fermentation and civilization are inseparable. – John Ciardi (1916-1986)
  • Give me a woman who truly loves beer, and I will conquer the world. – Kaiser Wilhelm II (1859-1941)
  • He who drinks beer sleeps well/He who sleeps well cannot sin/He who does not sin goes to heaven/Amen. – Unknown German Monk
  • It is better to think of church in the ale-house than to think of the ale-house in church. – Martin Luther (1483-1546)
  • The selling of bad beer is a crime against Christian love. – Law, the City of Augsburg, 13th Century
  • A good local pub has much in common with a church, except that a pub is warmer, and there’s more conversation. – William Blake
  • Beer is proof that God loves us. – Ben Franklin
  • It is my design to die in the brew-house; let ale be placed to my mouth when I am expiring, that when the choirs of angels come, they may say, “Be God propitious to this drinker.” – Saint Columbanus, AD 612
  • From man’s sweat and God’s love, beer came into the world. – Saint Arnoldus
  • God made yeast, as well as dough, and loves fermentation just as dearly as he loves vegetation. – Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
  • There are more old drunks than old doctors. – Anonymous
  • Of doctors and medicines we have in plenty more than enough … what you may, for the Love of God, send is some large quantity of beer. – Dispatch from the Colony, New South Wales, 1854
  • The Puritanical nonsense of excluding children and therefore to some extent women from pubs has turned these places into mere boozing shops instead of the family gathering places that they ought to be. – George Orwell (1903-1950)
  • Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer. – Henry Lawson
  • Wine is but single broth, ale is meat, drink, and cloth. – 16th Century English Proverb
  • At social parties no gentleman ever thought of leaving the table sober; the host would have considered it a slight on his hospitality. – F.W. Hackwood, comment on manners, 18th Century England
  • Beer … “a high and mighty liquor.” – Julius Caesar
  • Of beer, an enthusiast has said that it could never be bad, but that some brands might be better than others. – A.A. Milne
  • Beer, of course, is actually a depressant, but poor people will never stop hoping otherwise. – Curt Vonnegut, Jr., Hocus Pocus, 1990
  • He is not deserving the name of Englishman who speaketh against ale, that is, good ale. – George Borrow (1803-1881)
  • Ere’s to English women an’ a quart of English beer. – Rudyard Kipling
  • For a quart of Ale is a dish for a King. – Shakespeare (A Winter’s Tale)
  • I would give all my fame for a pot of ale and safety. – William Shakespeare (King Henry V)
  • There’s nothing as heartening as the sight of an empty pub in the morning, the shelves full and everything spick and span before the barbarian hordes come in. Them that drinks bottles spoil the look of the shelves but draught is a different story – you never see the barrel going down. – Patrick McGinley
  • No poems can live long or please that are written by water-drinkers. – Horace 65-8 BC
  • Work is the curse of the drinking classes. – Oscar Wilde
  • When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading. – Henny Youngman
  • I’d rather have a bottle in front of me, than a frontal lobotomy. – Tom Waits
  • Beer is good food. – John Goodman
  • All other nations are drinking Ray Charles beer and we are drinking Barry Manilow. – Dave Barry
  • Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza. – Dave Barry’s Bad Habits
  • The problem with the world is that everyone is a few drinks behind. – Humphrey Bogart

    Photograph by Daniel Foucachon (

  • Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.
  • Give a man a beer, and he wastes an hour, but teach a man how to brew, and he wastes a lifetime.
  • He that buys land buys many stones, He that buys flesh buys many bones, He that buys eggs buys many shells, But he that buys good ale buys nothing else. – John Ray
  • Draft beer, not people.
  • People who drink light ‘beer’ don’t like the taste of beer; they just like to pee alot. – Capital Brewery, Middleton
  • Beer will always have a definite role in the diet of an individual and can be considered a cog in the wheel of nutritional foods. – Bruce Carlton
  • No soldier can fight unless he is properly fed on beef and beer. – John Churchill, First Duke of Marlborough
  • Always remember that I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me. – Winston Churchill
  • Make sure that the beer – four pints a week – goes to the troops under fire before any of the parties in the rear get a drop. – Winston Churchill to his Secretary of War, 1944
  • ‘Sir, if you were my husband, I would poison your drink.’ – Lady Astor to Winston Churchill; ‘Madam, if you were my wife, I would drink it.’ – His reply
  • If God had intended us to drink beer, He would have given us stomachs. – David Daye
  • If you ever reach total enlightenment while drinking beer, I bet it makes beer shoot out your nose. – Deep Thought, Jack Handy
  • Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed – Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, ‘It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver.’ – Deep Thought, Jack Handy
  • A woman drove me to drink and I didn’t even have the decency to thank her. – W.C. Fields
  • Everybody has to believe in something. … I believe I’ll have another drink. – W.C. Fields
  • I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer. – Abraham Lincoln
  • We old folks have to find our cushions and pillows in our tankards. Strong beer is the milk of the old. – Martin Luther
  • Prohibition makes you want to cry into your beer and denies you the beer to cry into. – Don Marquis
  • Why is American beer served cold? So you can tell it from urine. – David Moulton
  • He was a wise man who invented beer. – Plato
  • I would kill everyone in this room for a drop of sweet beer. – Homer Simpson
  • All right, brain, I don’t like you and you don’t like me – so let’s just do this and I’ll get back to killing you with beer. – Homer Simpson
  • I feel sorry for people who don’t drink. When they wake up in the morning, that’s as good as they’re going to feel all day. – Frank Sinatra
  • [I recommend] … bread, meat, vegetables and beer. -Sophocles’ philosophy of a moderate diet
  • This is grain, which any fool can eat, but for which the Lord intended a more divine means of consumption … Beer! – Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves, Friar Tuck
  • Fermentation may have been a greater discovery than fire. – David Rains Wallace
  • Beer: So much more than just a breakfast drink. – Whitstran Brewery sign
  • You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline – it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. – Frank Zappa
  • It is disgusting to note the increase in the quantity of coffee used by my subjects and the amount of money that goes out of the country in consequence. Everybody is using coffee. If possible, this must be prevented. My people must drink beer. – Frederick the Great
  • It was as natural as eating and, to me, as necessary. I would not have thought of eating a meal without drinking a beer. – Ernest Hemingway
  • Keep your libraries, your penal institutions, your insane-asylums … give me beer. You think man needs rule, he needs beer. The world does not need morals, it needs beer … The souls of men have been fed with indigestibles, but the soul could make use of beer. – Henry Miller
  • In my opinion, most of the great men of the past were only there for the beer. – Alan John Percivale Taylor, British historian (1906-1990)
  • Nothing quenches the thirst like a Wheat Beer, or sharpens the appetite like an India Pale Ale. Nothing goes as well with seafood as a Dry Porter or Stout, or accompanies chocolate like an Imperial Stout. Nothing soothes like a Barley Wine. These are just a few of the specialty styles of beer.” – Michael Jackson
  • Malt does more than Milton can/To justify God’s ways to Man.- A.E. Housman

[If you know of any more notes of praise for ‘the world’s oldest and most consumed alcoholic beverage’ then post in the comments]


  1. …great post Jason. I was doing some reading up on your blog as I am preparing to do some writing about the Atonement and the various positions held.

    Your blog is rich and a wonderful source — as usual.

    I ran across a post that I shared the link on one of my blogs today — 12 Most common beer myths exploded…

    Also, I posted the beer song a couple weeks back on the same blog—good stuff if you haven’t seen it. There is word that the Ben Franklin quote heard ’round the world wasn’t as it is often stated.

    Thanks again for your labor of love here.


  2. Anyone know where I can buy beer signs, like “Beer, so much more than a breakfast drink.”
    The Whitstran Brewery sign


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