More Justice Anecdotes (Post No.9496)


Post No. 9496

Date uploaded in London – –15 APRIL  2021     

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Voltaire Punished

A French nobleman had been satirised by Voltaire and meeting the author soon after gave him a severe caning. Voltaire immediately complained to the Duke of Orleans and begged him to do justice.

Sir, replied the duke, you have had it done already.


Imbecile Case

A rather celebrated case tried by the Supreme Court involved a decision upholding the Virginia statute providing for the sterilisation of imbeciles. The majority opinion was written by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes and okayed by all except justice Pierce Butler, who was a Roman Catholic.

Speculating about this, Holmes is said to have remarked to a colleague

He knows the law is the way I have written it. But he is afraid of the Church. I will lay you a bet the Church beats the law

Professor Powell of Harvard was in the habit of reading Holmes’ opinion to his Law classes,

“Three generations of imbeciles are enough, he would read, adding, Mr Justice Butter dissenting”.

Imbecile – a stupid person; a foolish person.

 Synonyms: Noun


Lincoln saved court-martialled brothers

One of the most celebrated courts martial during the Civil War was that of Franklin W Smith and his brother charged with defrauding the government. These men bore a high character for integrity. At this time, however, courts martial s were seldom invoked for any other purpose than to convict the accused, and the Smiths shared the usual fate of persons whose cases were submitted to such ar itrament . They were kept in prison, their papers seized, their business destroyed, and their reputations ruined, all of which followed by a conviction.

The finding of the court was submitted to President Lincoln, who after a careful investigation, disapprove d the judgment and wrote the following endorsement upon the papers,

Whereas Franklin W Smith had transactions with the Navy Department to the amount of a million and quarter of dollars ; and

Whereas he had a chance to steal at least a quarter of a million and was only charged with stealing twenty two hundred dollars and the question now is about his stealing one hundred, I don’t believe he stole anything At all.

Therefore, the record and findings are disapproved, declared null and void and the defendants are fully discharged.

Xxx subham xxxx

 tags- justice, lincoln, voltaire 


Date: 8 FEBRUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 19-54


Compiled by London swaminathan


Post No. 4716


PICTURES ARE TAKEN from various sources; may be subject to copy right laws.





Agnostic and Atheist Anecdotes!

The late Dr Jowett, the famous master of Balliol College, Oxford, was met one day in the “quad” by an undergraduate who informed him that he, for his part, could find no positive evidence of the existence of God.

Well, Mr B, said Dr Jowett tartly,

“If you don’t find a god by five o clock this afternoon, you will leave this college!”




Voltaire’s Fear

One day. When D’Alambert and Condorcet were dining with Voltaire, they proposed to converse of atheism, but Voltaire stopped them at once.

Wait, said he, till my servants have withdrawn. I do not wish to have my throat cut tonight.




No Religion

During the riots of 1780 most persons in London, in order to save their houses from being burnt or pulled down, wrote on their doors,

No Popery!

Old Grimaldi, to avoid all mistakes, wrote on his,

‘No religion ‘

(The Gordon Riots of 1780 began as an anti-Catholic protest in London against the Papists Act of 1778, which was intended to reduce official discrimination against British Catholics. The protest evolved into riots and looting.)


Is Christ All Powerful?

The Little Louise Napoleon did not respond with particular susceptibility to his religious education. In the course of it, he stumbled upon one of the puzzling problems which is remarked upon by many young theological students.

His instructor had portrayed with great melodrama the anguish and suffering of Christ. Louise manifested little reaction

“Aren’t you grieved ?” demanded his teacher, “to think how these wicked men behaved to our Lord.”

“Well”, objected, Louise

“If he was all powerful, why did he let them?”

Xxxx Subham xxxx




Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 15 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London  7-31 am




Post No. 4619

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Tiru Valluvar is the most famous didactic poet of India. Though he wrote in Tamil, his work Tirukkural consisting of 1330 couplets on moral values was translated into many of the old (Sanskrit and Latin) and modern languages.

Voltaire was a French philosopher and historian who lived 300 years ago.


There are some interesting and striking similarities between some western authors and Tiru Valluvar.


Valluvar says,

‘All men are born equal, but distinctions arise only on the basis of performance,

In the respective occupations they take on’- Kural 972


Another translation of the same couplet (972) runs as follows

‘Alike is birth to all; but in their greatness they are not alike owing to the divergence of their actions’.


French philosopher Voltaire said,

‘Men are equal; it is not the birth but virtues that make the difference’.


In the Bhagavad Gita (4-13) Lord Krishna says,

‘The four fold order was created by Me according to the divisions of the quality and work. Though I am its creator, know Me to be incapable of action or change’.


Dr S Radhakrishnan comments on this Gita sloka/ couplet (4-13) as follows,

‘The emphasis is on Guna (aptitude) and karma (action) and not Jati (birth). The varna or the order to which we belong is independent of sex, birth or breeding. A class determined by temperament and vocation is not a caste determined by birth or heredity.


It is very interesting that Thomas Jefferson also used the phrase in the U S Declaration of Independence:

“All men are created equal”

Later Vietnamese also used the phrase.

J J Rousseau, French philosopher of the 18th century also believed in this principle.


Later day politicians and leaders freely used this phrase in their political speeches.


Tamil poet Kamban also says that one’s greatness or meanness comes from one’s action; otherwise everyone is equal.



VALLUVAR AND CICERO: Face is the Index of the Mind

Cicero was a Roman politician and lawyer who lived 2000 years ago. He was one of the great orators. He said,

“The countenance is the portrait of the soul”

He also said,

“All action is of the mind and the mirror of the mind is face, its index the eyes”.


Tiru Valluvar said,

The mirror reflects nearby objects. even so the face indicates the emotions throbbing in the mind—Kural 706

Another translation runs like this:

‘Even as a crystal reflects what comes near, within its line of sight

The face reflects the offending thoughts of the heart’.


‘Face is the index of the Mind’- is an English proverb known to everyone.


Great English playwright Shakespeare also uses facial expressions in several of his plays:

“there is a kind of confession in your looks which your modesties have not craft enough to colour” – Hamlet , Act 2, Scene 2


In the Srimad Bhagavatam commentary, Srila Prabhupada, use this facial features to illustrate another point:


SB 4.21.15, Translation and Purport: King Pṛthu’s body was tall and sturdy, and his complexion was fair. His arms were full and broad and his eyes as bright as the rising sun. His nose was straight, his face very beautiful and his personality grave. His teeth were set beautifully in his smiling face.


Amongst the four social orders (brāhmaṇas, kṣatriyas, vaiśyas and śūdras), the kṣatriyas, both men and women, are generally very beautiful. As will be apparent from the following verses, it is to be concluded that not only were Mahārāja Pṛthu’s bodily features attractive, as described here, but he had specific all-auspicious signs in his bodily construction.


As it is said, “The face is the index of the mind.” One’s mental constitution is exhibited by his facial features. The bodily features of a particular person are exhibited in accordance with his past deeds, for according to one’s past deeds, his next bodily features—whether in human society, animal society or demigod society—are determined. This is proof of the transmigration of the soul through different types of bodies.



Beauty Anecdotes (Post No.4380)

Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 9 NOVEMBER 2017


Time uploaded in London- 9-55 am



Post No. 4380

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Fontanelle ,at the age of 97, after saying many amiable and gallant things to a beautiful young lady, passed before her without seeing her, to place himself at table.


See, said the lady, how I ought to value your gallantries, you pass without looking at me ”

Madam, replied the old man, if I had looked at you I could not have passed.




Dustman’s Heart

As the beautiful Duchess of Devonshire was one day stepping out of her carriage, a dustman who was accidentally standing by and was about to regale himself with his accustomed whiff of tobacco, caught a glance of her countenance, and instantly exclaimed,

Love and bless you, my lady, let me light my pipe in your eye!


It is said that the Duchess was so delighted with his compliment, that she frequently afterward s checked the strain of adulation which was constantly offered to her charms, by saying,

OH! After the dustman s compliment, all others are insipid ”




Chesterfield and Voltaire


Lord Chesterfield and Voltaire were attending a reception in Paris. Noticing that the English man was being assailed by some of the ladies, the French wit said to him,

My Lord,it is said that you possess keen discrimination; tell me now, who are the more handsome, the French women or the women of your own country?


As to that , replied chesterfield, I must admit that I cannot say,as I am no connoisseur in the art of painting.





Curran, speaking of Madame de Stael who was by no means handsome, but a splendid conversationalist, said she ” the power of talking herself into a beauty.




Someone once noted to Samuel Goldwyn the beauty of his wife’s hands.

Yes, Goldwyn said, ” she has such beautiful hands, I am thinking of having a bust made of them. ”


Xxxx SUBHAM xxxx



Dickens and Voltaire: More Author Anecdotes (Post No.4080)

Compiled by London Swaminathan
Date: 14 July 2017
Time uploaded in London- 10-49 am
Post No. 4080
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Meeting one’s literary idol face to face is sometimes a sad experience. According to George Dolby, who was dickens lecture manager.

During the progress of a reading, he tells, my attention was drawn to a gentleman who was in a most excited state. Imagining to be ill and wanting assistance,

I said, “What is the matter with you?”

“Say, who is that man on the platform reading ?”

“Mr Charles dickens”, I replied

“But that ain’t the real Charles dickens, the man as wrote all them books I have been reading all these years?”

“The same”

“Well, all I have to say about it then is that he knows no more about Sam Weller a cow does of pleating a shirt, at all events that ain’t my idea of Sam Weller, anyhow. And he clapped his hat on his head and left in a state of high dudgeon.



Voltaire and Casanova

While Voltaire was living in retirement in Geneva, he was visited by the Italian Casanova. Voltaire had been reading some recent works by Haller, the Bernese savant, and praised him to his guest.

“That is commendation which is indeed ill requited”, said Casanova.

“I have heard that Haller, far from returning your compliment says that your writing is more than half nonsense”.

Ah, well, then returned the famous wit with a wry smile, “it may be that we were both mistaken in our judgments”.



Dr Johnson and Oliver Goldsmith

One day Dr Johnson received a message from Oliver Goldsmith that his land lady had called in an officer to arrest him for non- payment of his bill. Johnson immediately sent him a guinea and himself proceeded to the scene of battle at his own speed.


When he arrived Goldsmith had already broken the guinea to procure a bottle of Madeira, and being well stimulated by the contents was berating his land lady soundly when Johnson entered.


The heavy angel interrupted his eloquence to inquire if he had any means of raising money, whereat Goldsmith produced the manuscript of a novel.  This Johnson pocketed, hurried away to Newbury the book seller and returned shortly with sixty pounds. This was the “Vicar of Wakefield “



Sheridan, Voltaire, Wordsworth: New Anecdotes about Longwindedness (Post No.2971)


Franklin D Roosevelt’s  Picture

Compiled by London swaminathan

Date:14 July 2016

Post No. 2971

Time uploaded in London :– 9-15 AM

( Thanks for the Pictures)




(for old articles go to OR


I have already published Londgwindedness anecdotes and More Londgwindedness anecdotes. This is the third one.


When President Franklin D Roosevelt was a young lawyer just getting started in New York he was retained to handle a difficult civil case. The opposing lawyer was a very effective jury pleader and completely outshone his youthful rival in the argument to the jury. However, he made one fatal mistake; he orated for several hours.


As he thundered on Roosevelt noticed that the jury was not paying much attention. So, playing a hunch when his turn came, he rose and said,

“Gentlemen you have heard the evidence . You also have listened to my distinguished colleague, a brilliant orator. If you believe him, and disbelieve the evidence you will have to decide in his favour. That is all I have to say”.


The jury was out only five minutes and brought in a verdict for Roosevelt’s client.





Speaking of a lawyer Lincoln said, “He can compress the most words into the smallest ideas better than any man I have ever met”.




Picture of Sheridan


“Oh, it was a mistake, said Sheridan, I meant voluminous.”




picture of Voltaire

When Diderot came visit Voltaire he spoke so much and at great length that Voltaire couldn’t get a word in. When Diderot left, Voltaire chirped, “That man is a great wit, but nature has denied him one great gift –that of dialogue”.



William Wordsworth

Elizabe Barret, meeting Wordsworth for the first time, wrote ironically, “He was very kind to me and let me hear his conversation.”



They tell the story of Wilton Lackaye who was scheduled to speak late on the programme at a banquet at which all the speakers had been brutally long winded.


The chairman introduced Lackaye, saying, “Wilton Lackaye, the famous actor, will now give you his address”


Lackaye faced the haggard audience and said,


“Mr Chairman, Ladies and Gentle en, my address is the Lambs Club, New York” .


He sat down and received a tremendous ovation.




A very pretty woman, who was tediously loquacious , complained one day to Madame de  Sevigne that she was sadly torment ted by her lovers.


“Oh, madam, said Madame de Sevigne to her, with a smile,

It is very easy to get rid of them, you have only to speak.:





A talkative lady patient came to Dr Abernathy , the eccentric English physician of another day, and talked tirelessly and tiresomely about her complaint .


“Put out your tongue, madam”, barked Dr Abernathy. The lady complied. “Now keep it there till I have done talking”.




Sheridan , the playwright , on seeing a Member of the House of Commons, who had already bored everyone with a lengthy speech , stop to drink a glass of water, rose to a point of order.

What is it? Asked the speaker


“Why I think ,sir, said Sheridan, “ that  it is out of order for a wind mill to go by water”.