Leo Calvin Rosten (11 April 1908 – 19 February 1997) was an American teacher, academic and humorist best remembered for his stories about the night-school "prodigy" Hyman Kaplan and for The Joys of Yiddish (1968).
- The only thing I can say about W. C. Fields … is this: Any man who hates dogs and babies can't be all bad.
- Although a very common misconception is to attribute the final part of this quote to W.C. Fields himself, it was actually first said about him by Rosten during a "roast" of Fields at the Masquer's Club in Hollywood in 1939, as Rosten explains in his book, The Power of Positive Nonsense (1977).
- I learned that it is the weak who are cruel, and that gentleness is to be expected only from the strong.
- Captain Newman, M. D (1962), p. 328; this is also sometimes attributed to Leo Buscaglia, who often quoted it in his addresses and in his book Living, Loving and Learning (1982).
- Conservative: One who admires radicals a century after they're dead.
- As quoted in The Modern Handbook of Humor (1967) by Ralph Louis Woods
- A conservative is someone who admires radicals a century after they're dead.
- A conservative is one who admires radicals centuries after they're dead.
- What's green, hangs on a wall and whistles?
- Riddle presented in The Joys of Yiddish (1968) The answer: "A Herring" — because you can paint it green, nail it to the wall — and the whistling part is added just to make the riddle hard." Rosten did not claim to be the author of this riddle, but he popularized it.
- Extremists think "communication" means agreeing with them.
- As quoted in Peter's Quotations: Ideas for Our Time (1979) compiled by Laurence J. Peter, p. 100