Now's the time to test your old adage know-how. Old sayings are the moral reinforcements of a civilized society. These phrases are meant to be easy to memorize and pass on to later generations. Were you fortunate enough to catch wind of these sayings in your lifetime? Are you wise enough to spread these wise words?
Aphorisms are brief statements that express epic life ideals regarding health, wealth, personal conduct and interpersonal relationships. "Early to bed, early to rise...," "All that glitters..." and "Birds of a feather..." start off several of the more common aphorisms. Greek physician Hippocrates was the first to use the word "aphorism" in his book "The Aphorisms of Hippocrates." Hippocrates was dubbed the "Father of Medicine" for a reason. So it befits you to get better acquainted with these common phrases. But not all of these expressions are meant to do good. We've slipped in a few trickster types in this quiz for good measure. Words to live by come in all forms. How many can you spot?
Conquer this common phrases drill and see if you are the master teacher that others seek. Go seek and find out now!
This common phrase summarizes verses one through eight from the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible. In 1952, music group "The Byrds" released the song "To Everything There Is a Season" that mimics the Ecclesiastical verses. The song is more popularly known as "Turn!, Turn!, Turn!"
Physical beauty is only an outward characteristic. It is not a good indicator of a person's inner personality. "Beauty is only skin deep" is a phrase authored by English poet Thomas Overbury in the seventeenth century.
This phrase is attributed to Benjamin Franklin who wrote the phrase under the pseudonym "Poor Richard." Franklin published the now-popular phrase in his "Poor Richard's Almanack," which was released serially in the eighteenth century.
Another variation of this phrase is "Absence makes the heart grow fonder." Both versions of the phrase allude to the human tendency of longing more intensely for a love interest that is missed.
There is a general expectation that older people are wise, considering the years of experience they've enjoyed. The phrase first appeared in a book by John Heywood. Heywood's original phrase is: "But there is no foole to the olde foole, folke saie."
When assessing an issue, the details (especially when hidden) are usually the most troublesome. Problematic details prompt revision or outright abandonment of the initial venture.
"Absolute power corrupts absolutely" is a common phrase that speaks to the tempting nature of power, particularly when it's unchecked. Another version of the phrase includes the phrase "Power tends to corrupt," and, by degree, total power corrupts more so.
This phrase highlights the virtue of patience. H. J. Heinz Company ran a series of ads in the 1980s with the phrase "Good things come to those who wait" which poked jest at the frustration ketchup lovers often experienced when attempting to extract ketchup from bottles that were then designed with narrow bottlenecks.
William Shakespeare coined this phrase in the play "Hamlet," published sometime between 1599 and 1602. Shakespeare alludes to how conciseness enhances the element of wit, as a matter of expressive style.
All publicity, good or bad, heightens public curiosity. This fact is especially helpful to people who seek increased fame in the public sphere.
Not everything that looks good outwardly is of value or of hastily perceived value. This common phrase suggests that a proper vetting take place before indulging.
English poet Alexander Pope penned the phrase "To err is human; to forgive is divine" in "An Essay on Criticism," published in 1711. Pope encourages humans to follow a divine example when regarding the mistakes of others.
"All's Well That Ends Well" is the title of William Shakespeare's 1623 play. The trials and tribulations of an issue are not so important if it all works out in the end.
Another version of this common phrase is "Time and tide wait for no man." This phrase is similar to the phrase, "Never put off for tomorrow what can be done today." These phrases discourage needless waiting and encourage taking advantage of every minute.
It was long believed that eating one apple daily prevented illness. An 1860s issue of the journal "Notes and Queries" published more exhaustive counsel on the topic: "Eat an apple on going to bed, and you'll keep the doctor from earning his bread."
"There's one born every minute" is another version of this common phrase. It is alleged that American businessman P. T. Barnum coined this phrase, but there is little evidence of this. The phrase is often used in the context of manipulating unsuspecting people, or suckers, to part ways with their money.
"An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" is an ancient phrase that dates back to the days of Babylonian King Hammurabi. The fifth chapter of the New Testament book of Matthew in the King James Bible includes the entire phrase: "Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth."
In his epistle, or instructional letter, to the Galatians, which is a New Testament book in the Bible, the Apostle Paul writes: "God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." Paul warns early Christians to consider the consequences of their actions.
This phrase touches on the nature of free will. You can lead someone to a valuable resource, but a person may or may not choose to use the resource to enrich their lives.
"There's no such thing as a free lunch" is based on the economic theory that someone has to pay for someone else's consumption of goods and services. The phrase is so popular that it's often referred to by the acronym "tanstaafl," which stands for "There ain't no such thing as a free lunch."
The phrase distills the familiar knowledge that people with the same likes tend to gather around similar interests. As far back as 380 B.C., Greek philosopher Plato wrote a version of the phrase in his work "Republic": "Men of my age flock together; we are birds of a feather, as the old proverb says."
The phrase stresses that those who are the position to help others have a responsibility to take care of their family and close friends before venturing out offering help. The eighth verse of the book of first Timothy in the fifth chapter offers similar advice: "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."
The phrase "There's a time and a place for everything" appears in the 1799 story "The Naughty Girl Won," distributed by the Religious Tract Society. However, it is believed that the phrase dates back further than this.
This common phrase is also written as "Beggars should not be choosers" or "Beggars can't be choosers." These phrases are very close in meaning to the phrase "Don't look a gift horse in the mouth." Sixteenth-century writer John Heywood is credited for authoring these phrases.
This idiomatic phrase is also written as "The proof of the pudding is in the eating." The phrase means that the quality of the details and the planning of a project is determined by the end results.
Chinese teacher and philosopher Confucius is referenced as someone who used the phrase "Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." The phrase has been used to imply that it is wiser to remedy problems than to dwell on them before finding a solution.
The phrase "The pen is mightier than the sword" has reappeared throughout history several times. Statesman Thomas Jefferson, writer William Shakespeare and dramatist George Whetstone have all expressed some form of the phrase.
The phrase speaks to the need for assessing one's current circumstances before changing a course of action. Sometimes our perspective is limited from our current position. Poorly scrutinized options that appear sensible may, in fact, cause more harm.
English writer John Heywood authored the phrase "The mo the merier" in his book sixteenth-century book titled, "A Dialogue Conteinyng the Nomber in Effect of All the Prouerbes in the Englishe Tongue: Compacte in a Matter Concernyng Two Maner of Mariages, Made and Set Foorth." The phrase means that the more people there are who attend a gathering, the more festive the occassion.
The phrase "Blood is thicker than water" suggests that ones obligations to kin are most important of all. The phrase was printed in the eighteenth-century publication "A Collection of Scots Proverbs" by Allan Ramsay as "Blude's thicker than water."
Diplomat and writer William Caxton penned a Middle English version of this phrase in his fifteenth-century revision of "Aesop's Fables": "For to a folysshe demaunde behoueth a folysshe ansuere." Fact-finders who don't furnish intelligent questions won't achieve much success.
Although conventional standards exist, beauty remains a highly subjective quality. William Shakespeare expresses this best in his late-1500s play "Love's Labours Lost": "Beauty is bought by judgement of the eye, not utter'd by base sale of chapmen's tongues."
According to Latin experts, "Seize the day" is a very loose translation of "Carpe diem." This current translation is more widely accepted, however. The long version of the Latin quote is "Carpe diem quam minimum credula postero," which is translated as "Seize the day, trusting as little as possible in tomorrow."
It is hard to contest the validity of this common phrase. It's a tried-and-true adage that getting plenty of rest and waking early to accomplish one's tasks leads to intended success over time.
This idiomatic phrase calls attention to the careless deed of mistaking something valuable for something worthless. The phrase also conjures the often-disregarded virtues of patience and discernment.