The 30 Harshest Author-on-Author Insults In History

15. William Faulkner on Ernest Hemingway

“He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.”

14. Ernest Hemingway on William Faulkner

“Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?”

13. Gore Vidal on Truman Capote

“He’s a full-fledged housewife from Kansas with all the prejudices.”

12. Oscar Wilde on Alexander Pope

“There are two ways of disliking poetry; one way is to dislike it, the other is to read Pope.”

11. Vladimir Nabokov on Ernest Hemingway (1972)

“As to Hemingway, I read him for the first time in the early ‘forties, something about bells, balls and bulls, and loathed it.”

Flavorwire

[Editor’s note: While your Flavorwire editors take a much-needed holiday break, we’re revisiting some of our most popular features of the year. This post was originally published June 19, 2011.] Sigh. Authors just don’t insult each other like they used to. Sure, Martin Amis raised some eyebrows when he claimed he would need brain damage to write children’s books, and recent Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Egan made waves when she disparaged the work that someone had plagiarized, but those kinds of accidental, lukewarm zingers are nothing when compared to the sick burns of yore. It stands to reason, of course, that writers would be able to come up with some of the best insults around, given their natural affinity for a certain turn of phrase and all. And it also makes sense that the people they would choose to unleash their verbal battle-axes upon would be each other…

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