Gone With The Wind
Clark Gable and Vivian Leigh in a publicity photo from 1939 film Gone With The Wind. Wikimedia Commons

A famous quote from author Margaret Mitchell's classic novel, Gone With The Wind, has been voted the greatest literary put-down in a poll.

The quote, "My dear, I don't give a damn," said by character Rhett Butler in the novel picked up maximum votes in the survey by UKTV channel Drama.

In the novel-inspired 1939 classic film of the same name starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh, the quote was altered to the more famous line: "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn."

Margaret Mitchell leads as the author for writing the snub of all time followed by Oscar Wilde, Terry Pratchett and Agatha Christie.

Author Jane Austen, who rounds up the top five in the poll, has won another slot in the top ten for her put-down lines from the same novel, Pride and Prejudice.

"These authors had such an incredible ear for dialogue they would put most modern day script writers to shame," the channel's general manager, Adrian Wills, said in a statement.

"It's clear that a great put-down is as memorable as budding romance or tragic ending when it comes to enduring literature," the statement reads.

The top 10 greatest put-downs in classic literature, according to the poll that surveyed 2000 adults, are:

1. "My dear, I don't give a damn." - Gone With The Wind, Margaret Mitchell - (Character: Rhett Butler)

2. "To lose one parent may be regarded as a misfortune, Mr Worthing, to lose both looks like carelessness" - The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde - (Character: Lady Bracknell)

3. "May your genitals sprout wings and fly away." - Small Gods, Terry Pratchett - (Character: Om - the tortoise)

4. "If you will forgive me for being personal, I do not like your face." - Murder on The Orient Express, Agatha Christie - (Character: Hercule Poirot)

5. "She is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me" - Pride And Prejudice, Jane Austen - (Character: Mr Darcy)

6. "You are the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry." - Pride And Prejudice, Jane Austen - (Character: Elizabeth Bennett)

7. "If looks could kill, you'd soon find out that yours couldn't." - After Claude, Iris Owens - (Character: Harriet)

8. "The tartness of his face sours ripe grapes." - Coriolanus, William Shakespeare - (Character: Menenius)

9. "The simplicity of your character makes you exquisitely incomprehensible to me." - The Importance of being Earnest, Oscar Wilde - (Character: Gwendolen)

10. "I misjudged you... You're not a moron. You're only a case of arrested development." - The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway - (Character: Harvey Stone)