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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 1769
AUTHOR: Mark Twain (1835–1910)
QUOTATION: There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.
ATTRIBUTION: MARK TWAIN, Mark Twain’s Autobiography, p. 246 (1924), quotes this as a remark attributed to Disraeli.

Current quotation books, in addition to naming Mark Twain or Disraeli, have suggested Henry Labouchère, Abram S. Hewitt, and Holloway H. Frost; one bravely says “author unidentified.”

The quotation, or a variation, seems to be known internationally. When a Russian citizen was interviewed, following the death of Chernenko, he began by saying, “As one of your writers said, ‘There are three kinds of lie: a small lie, a big lie and politics.’”—Time, March 25, 1985, p. 21.
SUBJECTS: Statistics