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Remedy worse than the disease.
Publius Syrus, Maxim 301; Bacon, Of Sedition! and Troubles;
Rhyme nor reason.
Pierre Patelin, quoted by Tyndale, 1530; Farce du Vendeur
Rolling stone gathers no moss.
Publius Syrus, Maxim 524; Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; Tusser, Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry; Gosson's Eu merides of Phialo; Marston, The Fawn.
Rule the rost.
Skelton, Colyn Cloule, circa 1518; Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; Shakespeare, Henry IV., Part ii. Act i. Sc. 1; Thomas Heywood, History of Women.
Set my ten commandments in your face.
Shakespeare, Henry VI., Part ii. Act i. Sc. 3; Selimut, Emperor of the Turks, 1594; Westward Hoe, 1607; Erasmus, Apophthegms.
Silence gives consent.
Kay's Proverbs; Fuller, Wise sentences; Goldsmith, The Good-
Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; Addison, Spectator.
The origin of the word "sleveless," in the sense of unprofitable, has defied the most careful research. It is frequently found allied to other substantives. Bishop Hall speaks of the "sleveless tale of transubstantiation," and Milton writes of a "sleveless reason." Chaucer uses it in the Testament of Love.— Sharman.
Smell a rat.
Kay's Proverbs; Middlcton, The Family of Lore, Act iv. Sc. 2;
Sober as a judge.
Fielding, Don Quixote in England, Sc. 14; Lamb, Letter to Mr. and Mrs. Maxon.
Spare the rod, and spoil the child.
Kay's Proverbs; Butler, Hudibras, Part ii. Canto i. Line 844.
Speech is silvern, Silence is golden; Speech is human.
Speech is like cloth of Arras, opened and put abroad, whereby the imagery doth appear in figure; whereas in thoughts they lie but as in packs. Plutarch, Life of Themistocles; from Bacon, Essays, On Friendship.
Spick and span new.
Ray's Proverbs; Middleton, The Family of Love, Act v. Sc. 3; Ford, The Lover's Melancholy, Act i. Sc. 1; Farquhar, Preface to his Works.
Strike while the iron is hot.
Rabelais, Book ii. Ch. xxxi.; Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; John
Tell truth, and shame the Devil.
Shakespeare, Henry IV., Part i. Act iii. Sc. 1; Beaumont and
That is a stinger.
Middleton, More Dissemblers besides Women, Act iii. Sr. 2.
This is a sure card.
The lion is not so fierce as they paint him.
Herbert, Jacula Prudentum; Fuller, On Expecting Preferment. They laugh that win.
Shakespeare, Othello, Act v. Sc. 1 j Lockhart's Translation of
This story will not go down.
Though I say it that should not say it.
Beaumont and Fletcher, Wit at several Weapons, Act ii. Sc. 2;
Through thick and thin.
Spenser, Faerie Queene, Book iii. Canto i. St. 17; Drayton, Nymphidia; Middleton, The Roaring Girl, Act iv. Sc. 2; Kemp, Nine Days' Wonder; Butler, Hudibras, Part i. Canto ii. Line 369; Dryden, Absalom and Achitophel, Part ii. Line 414; Pope, Dunciad, Book ii.; Cowper, John Gilpin.
To be in the wrong box.
Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; Fox, Book of Martyrs, vi.
To make a virtue of necessity.
Rabelais, Book i. Ch. xi.; Chaucer, Knightes Tale, Line 3044;
Shakespeare, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Act iv. Sc. 2;
Matthew Henry, Commentaries, Psalm xxxvii. ; Dryden,
Palamon and Arcite.
he remarks, under the head of Xecessitatem edere, that a very
familiar proverb was current among his countrymen, viz.
"Necessitatem in virtutem commutare."
Laudem virtutis necessitate damus.
Too much of a good thing.
Don Quixote, Part i. Book i. Ch. vi.; Shakespeare, As You Like
To run with the hare and hold with the hound.
Humphrey Robert, Complaynt for Reformation, 1572; Lyly,
To see and to be seen.
Chaucer, Wife of Bathes Prologue, Line 552; Ben Jonson,
Turn over a new leaf.
Middleton, Anything for a Quiet Life, Act iii. Sc. 3; A Health to the Gentl. Prof. of Servingmen, 1598; Burke, Letter to Mrs. Haviland.
Twinkling of a bed-post.
Shadwell, Virtuoso, 1676; Ben Jonson, Every Man in his
Two of a trade seldom agree.
Ray's Proverbs; Gay, The Old Hen and the Cock; Murphy,
Two strings to his bow.
Heywood's Proverbs, 1546; Letter of Queen Elizabeth to James
Up to the times, clever fellows.
Sidney, Discourses on Government, Vol. i. Ch. ii.
Virtue a reward to itself.
Virtue is her own reward.
Dryden, Tyrannic Love, Act iii. Sc. 1.
Virtue is to herself the best reward.
Virtue is its own reward.
Prior, Imitations of Horace, Book iii. Ode 2; Gay, Epistle to
Ipsa quidem Virtus sibimet pulcherrima merces.
Where God hath a temple, the Devil will have a chapel.
Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy, Part iii. Sec. iv.
Wherever God erects a house of prayer,
De Foe, The True-born Englishman, Part i. Line 1.
God never had a church but there, men say,
No sooner is a. temple built to God, but the Devil builds a. chapel hard by. George Herbert, Jacula Pmdentum.
Whistle and she ’ll come to you.
What the dickens.
Within one of her.
Wrong sow by the ear.
But me no buts.
Diamond me no diamonds! prize me no prizes.