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This episode of 50 common misquotations features quotations that are attributed to the wrong person, weird quotes that were recorded incorrectly, and bizarre quotes that were never said in the first place.

The List Show is a weekly show hosted by John Green, where knowledge junkies get their fix of trivia-tastic information. This week, John looks at 50 common misquotations and misattributions.

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Hi, I'm John Green. Welcome to my salon. By the way that's by my son, he's a genius. This is mental_floss.

So you already know from our 50 Misconceptions video that Sherlock Holmes never said, "Elementary, my Dear Watson", Al Gore never claimed to have invented the internet; now we are going to bust 50 more misquotes and misattributed quotes for you.


1. Martin Luther King never said, "I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy." That misquote, which went viral after Osama bin Laden's death, actually came from the Facebook status of a 24-year-old English teacher.

2. You know that famous Kurt Vonnegut commencement address that begins, "Ladies and gentlemen of the class of 1997: Wear sunscreen"? Such a brilliant speech that Baz Luhrmann turned it into a "hit song"? So genius that when Vonnegut's wife, Jill Krementz got an email containing the transcript of the speech, she forwarded it to the kids? Yeah, Vonnegut didn't give that speech, it was an article from the The Chicago Tribune by Mary Schmich.

3. Gandhi never said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world."

4. Also, there's no evidence that he ever said, "First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. The they attack you. Then you win."

5. Machiavelli never said, "The ends justify the means." Or the Italian equivalent. He said, "One must consider the final result." Which is just, not as catchy.

6. Poor self help guru Marianne Williams never gets credit for saying, "One deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure." Because that quote is always misattributed to Nelson Mandela.

7. The Bible never claims "Money is the root of all evil," just that "The love of money is the root of all evil."

8. It also doesn't contain the phrase, "The lion shall lay down with the lamb." Isaiah 11:6 actually states, "The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together." It would be like the best season of Road Rules ever - "Road Rules: Predator and Prey".

9. "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind," doesn't make any sense because man and mankind are synonyms. Fortunately for Neil Armstrong, that's apparently not what he actually said. The transmission blurred the fact that he said, "One small step for a man."

10. "Houston, we have a problem," was never spoken by Jim Lovell on the Apollo 13. But Tom Hanks does say it in the movie.

11. Additionally, no one on Apollo 13 said, "Failure is not an option." The whole situation had arisen because failure was clearly an option.

12. Speaking of Tom Hanks, it's "Life was like a box of chocolates," not "Life is like a box of chocolates."

13. "Me Tarzan. You Jane." never said in Tarzan the Ape Man.

14. Clint Eastwood as Dirty Harry doesn't say, "Do you feel lucky, punk?" He says. "Ask yourself one question. "Do I feel lucky?" Well, do you, punk?" Either way, it's fine with me as long as he doesn't say it to an empty chair.

15. The Queen in "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" doesn't say, "Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?" She says, "Magic mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?" Which means I've been saying the wrong thing to my mirror every morning for years now, which is probably why it hasn't answered me.

16. "I want to suck your blood." is not in Dracula.

17. And speaking of fictional monsters. Dr. Henry Frankenstein says, "It's alive!" in the 1931 film, not "He's alive!" Also, his assistant is not named Igor, his name is Fritz, and furthermore, Frankenstein is not the monster, he's the doctor.

18. Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz says, "Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore," not "I don't think we're in Kansas anymore."

19. Spock never said, "It's life, Jim, but not as we know it." That comes from "Star Trekkin", a song by The Firm. That's right, the same song that gave us the beautiful lyrics, "Star Trekkin' across the universe/On the Starship Enterprise under Captain Kirk/Star Trekkin' across the universe/Boldly going forward, still can't find reverse."

20. Speaking of Star Trek, Captain Kirk never says, "Beam me up, Scotty."

21. But Star Trek isn't mere victim of misquotations, Captain Kirk is probably responsible for the common misquote, "A rose by any other name smells just as sweet," which should be, "That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet."

22. Poor Shakespeare would be so disappointed about how often he's misquoted. Like people often say, "Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble," quoting Macbeth. But in fact, it's "Double, double."

23. Hamlet's famous speech doesn't been with, "Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him well",

24. and Queen Gertrude doesn't say, "Methinks the lady doth protest too much"; she says, "The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

25. And the Merchant of Venice warns that "All that glisters is not gold." There's no mention of glistening or certainly glittering. I guess Smash Mouth wasn't as well versed in Shakespeare as they wanted to appear.

26. "Hell hath no fury like a women scorned." is actually adapted from William Congreve, who wrote, "Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned/Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned." Either way, it is true.

27. Freud never said or wrote, "Dreams are the royal road to the unconscious,"

28. nor did he ever say that "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."

29. Voltaire didn't write, "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,"

30. and George Washington famous quote, "I cannot tell a lie. It was I who chopped down the cherry tree," is a lie; he never said it. But to be fair to George he probably didn't cut down the cherry tree.

31. Okay, I'm about to break the hearts of many girls on Tumblr, so I apologize, but Marilyn Monroe did not say, "If you can't handle me at my worst, you don't deserve me at my best,"

32. or that "Well-behaved women rarely make history." The latter was said by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, a Harvard professor.

33. Obi-Wan Kenobi never says, "May the force be with you," Han Solo does. Chewbacca also didn't say "May the force be with you," he said "PARGHHHHH."

34. And Darth Vader never says, "Luke, I am your father," he says "No, I am your father."

35. Greeting "Hello, Clarice," isn't in The Silence of the Lambs.

36. "I love the smell of napalm in the morning, it smells like victory!" is a shortened version of the quote from Apocalypse Now.

37. Jack Nicholson doesn't say, "You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!" in A Few Good Men. He just says the second half of that quote.

38. Winston Churchill's assistant, Anthony Montague Brown, said, "The only traditions of the Royal Navy are rum, sodomy, and the lash." Many people think it was Churchill and indeed, later he said that he wished he'd come up with it. But he didn't.

39. Churchill did say, "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat," which is much less catchy that how we quote it now, "Blood, sweat and tears."

40. Paul Revere probably did not say "The British are coming!" That is taken from the poem "Paul Revere's Ride".

41. Mark Twain often gets credit for saying most of the things that have ever been said in human history, including "The only two certainties in life are death and taxes." But that was in fact either Edward Ward or Christopher Bullock.

42. Twain also didn't say, "I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure." That's a shortened version of a Clarence Darrow quote.

43. And when Twain wrote a response to his rumored death in the New York Journal in 1897, he did not say, "Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated." He just said, "The report of my death was an exaggeration." Which in my opinion is actually funnier.

44. Poor Colonel William Prescott is forgotten when people attribute his quote to Andrew Jackson: "Don't fire till you see the whites of their eyes."

45. "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." That's Lao Tzu, not Confucius.

46. "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing," is a misquote of Alexander Pope's original statement, "A little learning is a dangerous thing."

47. "Walk softly, but carry a big stick"? No, "speak softly and carry a big stick."

48. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined." is often attributed to Henry David Thoreau, but it is a very loose interpretation of the real quote because Henry David Thoreau never anything in 13 words that could be said in 80.

49. Ginger Rogers didn't say that she did "everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels." In her autobiography, My Story, she wrote that the quotation actually came from a newspaper comic.

50. And lastly, for the record, I never wrote, "One day, you're 17, and you're planning for someday. And then quietly, without you ever really noticing, someday is today. And then someday is yesterday. And this is your life." That is from One Tree Hill!

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