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The Devil's Dictionary: Incompossible

by Ambrose Bierce
INCOMPATIBILITY
INCUBUS

INCOMPOSSIBLE

-adj.

Unable to exist if something else exists. Two things are incompossible when the world of being has scope enough for one of them, but not enough for both - as Walt Whitman's poetry and God's mercy to man. Incompossibility, it will be seen, is only incompatibility let loose. Instead of such low language as "Go heel yourself - I mean to kill you on sight," the words, "Sir, we are incompossible," would convey and equally significant intimation and in stately courtesy are altogether superior.

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