Adages, the oral transfer of knowledge between generations
An adage is a short saying that transmits wisdom. Before people knew how to read and write, they passed knowledge by word of mouth. The word adage comes from Latin adagium (saying), formed by the prefix ad- (to, toward, about) and agium (from the verb agio, I say). Here is a list of adages people use everyday to improve their lives.
- He, who has the gold, rules. (Another version of the Golden Rule)
- He who hesitates is lost.
- He who laughs last, didn't get the joke.
- He who laughs last, laughs hardest. (Thank you: Orlok)
- He who pursueth success mustn't be in a haste, because it may successfully waste. (Knowledge shouldn't be competed for. - Thank you: Zein Souma)
- He who rides a tiger can never dismount. (When you get into risky situations in business or dangerous exploits the only way is to carry on till the bitter end or you will get ruined. - Thank you: Tommy finn.)
- He who smelt it dealt it.
- He who wants to gather the honey, should be ready for the sting of the bee (Expect the consequences of your action. - Thank you: Fitz)
- He whom asks is dumb for five minutes; but he who does not ask is dumb for a lifetime. ( Thank you: Luis T. )
- Head in the toilet.
- Hell hath no fury like a woman's corns (Thank you: James 1941)
- Here's mud in your eye.
- He's full of the old harry. (Has a wild side. - Thank you: Lorraine)
- Hit the ground running. (Get up to speed, before you start.)
- Hitting the nail on the head. (Right on target.)
- Home is where the heart is.
- Home is where you hang your hat.
- Honesty is the best policy. (Always tell the truth. - Thank you: Anika)
- Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. (Thank you: Kendrick Bateson)
- I could eat a horse and chase the jockey. (I am so hungry. - Thank you: Staralfur)
- I know a little about everything and a lot about nothing. (Thank you: Mehdi)
- I once complained that I had no shoes, until I met a man who had no feet. (Be thankful for what you got.)
- I will marry education and give birth to success. (Thank you: Edu Blu)
- Idle hands are the devils playground. (Too much time on your hands could result in acquiring some real bad habits - Thank you: Steve Rivera)
- If a frog had wings, it wouldn't bump its butt. (Thank you: Betcke)
- If a man wants to do something, he'll come up with a way. If he doesn't want to do it, he'll come up with an excuse. (Thank you: Staralfur)
- If a nail is lost, a shoe is lost. If a shoe is lost, a horse is lost. If a horse is lost, a rider is lost. If a rider is lost, a battle is lost. If a battle is lost, the war is lost. (Little things do count. Thank you: Ken Gilliland)
- If anything can go wrong, it will (Murphy's Law: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong, and at the worst possible time, in the worst possible way.)
- If at first you don't succeed, try and try again.
- If at first you don't succeed you are about average. (Thank you: Richard)
- If I agree with you, we both be wrong.
- If I tell you the truth and you don't believe it, what does that make it?... No that doesn't make it a lie, it makes it the truth you don't believe. (Thank you: Patrice)
- If 'if and but's were candy and nuts (Thank you: Michael)
- If "Ifs" and "buts" were bolts and nuts, we could all build a stairway to heaven. (Too many excuses. - Thank you: Staralfur)
- If it ainít broke, donít fix it.
- If it ain't tested, it is broke (Mantra of test engineers)
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- If it walks like a duck, swims like a duck and quakes like a duck, then it's a duck. (Thank you: Ken Gilliland)
- If life throws you lemons, learn to make lemonade. (Make the best of a bad situation. - Thank you: Osmay)
- If my aunt had balls she'd be my uncle. (This is from great-grandma. Means the same thing as "if wishes were horses then beggars might ride" - Thank you: Susan L)
- If one has only a hammer, all problems look like nails.
- If the cat hadn't stop to take a shit, he would have caught the rat. (Grandma's adage - You can't change the past, when it comes to life's lessons. It is a small word & has a big meaning - Thank you: Karen Ingram)
- If the shoe fits, wear it.
- If three people tell you you're sick, lay down. (Thank you: Quintal)
- If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn't be called research. (Thank you Doug Eldred)
- If wishes were horses, beggars would ride. (Thank you: Louise)
- If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got.
- If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got. (Thank you: Beryl Thompson)
- If you cannot explain it, then you probably don't understand it. (Thank you: John Myers)
- If you can't be good, at least be interesting and when people are tired of you being interesting, you better be good.
- If you can't be good, be careful.
- If you can't be good, be good at it. (Thank you: Janice M)
- If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.
- If you can't dazzle 'em with brilliance, baffle 'em with BS. (Thank you: Paul)
- If you can't do the time, don't do the crime. (Thank you: Chris)
- If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem. (Thank you: Jimmy Kidd)
- If you can't improve on silence, don't say anything at all (Thank you: zenage)
- If you can't run with the big dogs, stay under the porch. (Thank you: Nellie B)
- If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. (Thank you: Carolyn)
- If you catch a fish eat it.
- If you did nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear. (Thank you: MCR)
- If you don't have anything good to say, don't say anything at all.
- If you have your health, you have everything. (Thank you: Debbie)
- If you haven't anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. (Thank you: D)
- If you hear the sound of hoofs approaching, it is probably a Horse, not a Zebra. (Don't expect the unexpected. - Thank you: Robert LaPorta)
- If you keep picking at it, it will never heal. (Thank you: Dr. Bob)
- If you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. (Be careful who you associate with. - Thank you: Kim)
- If you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas. (Thank you: Jackie Miller)
- If you love something, set it free. (Thank you: Jose )
- If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys (Thank you: James 1941)
- If you sleep with dogs, you will wake up with flees. (Thank you: Koon Wijekoon)
- If you take care of the pennies, the dollars will take care of themselves. (Thank you: Sharon H)
- If you tell everyone your business you won't have any business.
- If you try to walk on both sides of the fence, you'll get a splinter in your ass!! (Make a decision. Commit to one thing or the other - Thank you: Leanne)
- If you want sad things, watch the news. (Thank you: Penguinstein)
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