The 120 Famous English Proverbs

A proverb is a short and pitty sentence expressing a truth ascertained by experience or observation. It is a sentence which briefly and forcibly expresses some practical truth. In fact a proverb is a short popular saying that expresses effectively some common place truth or useful thought. Since these proverbs are generally well known, one should try to use them correctly and in their original form.

1. A honey tongue, a heart of gall.
2. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
3. A wolf in sheep's clothing.
4. All's well that ends well.
5. An empty vessel sounds much.
6. A nine day's wonder.
7. A rotten apple injures its companions.
8. As the king, so are the subjects.
9. As you sow, so shall you reap.
10. A bad man is better than a bad name
11. A bad workman quarrels with his tools.
12. A bird in hand in worth two in the bush.
13. A burnt child dreads the fire.
14. A drop in the ocean.
15. A drowning man catches at a straw.
16. A figure among ciphers.
17. A guilty conscience is always suspicious.
18. A hard nut to crack.
19. Avarice is the root of all evils.
20. Barking dogs seldom bite.
21. Beggars cannot be choosers.
22. Beneath every rose lies the thorn.
23. Better to wear out than to rust out.
24. Between the two stools we come to the ground.
25. Birds of the same feather flock together.
26. Better be alone than in bad company.
27. Casting pearls before swine.
28. Diamond cuts diamond.
29. Do good and cast it into the river.
30. Even a good marksman may miss.
31. Even death cannot be had for the asking.
32. Every potter praises his pot.
33. Everything looks yellow to a jaundiced eye.
34. Evil got, evil spent.
35. Familiarity breeds contempt.
36. Fool to others, to himself a sage.
37. Forced labour is better than idleness.
38. Fortune favours the brave.
39. Gather thistles and expect pickles.
40. God's will be done.
41. Good mind, good find.
42. Great cry little wool.
43. God helps those who help themselves.
44. Health is wealth.
45. Half a loaf is better than no bread.
46. He jests at scars who never felt a wound.
47. He that is warm, thinks all are so.
48. He who would catch fish must not mind getting wet.
49. He breaks his wife's head and then buys a plaster for it.
50. High winds blow on high hills.
51. His wits are gone a wool-gathering.
52. Handsome is that handsome does.
53. History repeats itself.
54. Honesty is the best policy.
55. Hope for the best and be prepared for the worst.
56. If you want a thing well done, do it yourself.
57. It is hard to live in Rome and fight with the Pope.
58. It is no use crying over spilt milk.
59. It takes two to make a quarrel.
60. Killing two birds with one stone.
61. Kill not the goose that lays the golden eggs.
62. King can do no wrong.
63. Know which way the wind blows.
64. Knowledge is power.
65. Let bygones be bygones.
66. Let the past bury the dead.
67. Like cures like.
68. Like attracts like.
69. Lend your money and lose your friend.
70. Let sleeping dogs lie.
71. Losers are always in the wrong.
72. Love and cough cannot be hidden.
73. Man proposes, God disposes.
74. Many a little makes a mickle.
75. Many men, many minds.
76. Measure for measure.
77. Misfortune never comes alone or singly.
78. Money begets money.
79. Man is as old as he feels, and a woman as old as she looks.
80. The more the merrier.
81. No one knows the weight of another's burden.
82. No pains, no gains.
83. Necessity is the mother of invention.
84. No pleasure without pain.
85. No rose without a thorn.
86. No smoke without some fire.
87. One flower makes no garland.
88. One nail drives out another.
89. One today is better than two tomorrow.
90. Out of the frying pan into the fire.
91. Penny-wise and pound foolish.
92. Poverty breeds strife.
93. Pure gold does not fear the flame.
94. Practice makes a man perfect.
95. Prevention is better than cure.
96. Pride hath a fall.
97. Quit not certainty for hope.
98. Respect yourself and you will be respected.
99. Self-praise is no recommendation.
100. Something is better than nothing.
101. Steal a goose and give giblets in alms.
102. Strike the iron while it is hot.
103. Speech is silver, silence is golden.
104. A stich in time saves nine.
105. Set a thief to catch a thief.
106. The innocent have nothing to fear.
107. The wearer knows where the shoe pinches.
108. There is many a slip betwixt the cup and the lip.
109. Time and tide wait for none.
110. To make castles in the air.
111. To make a mountain out of a mole hill.
112. To rob Peter, to pay Paul.
113. Too many cooks spoll the broth.
114. Too much courtesy, too much craft.
115. Tomorrow never comes.
116. Truth is always bitter.
117. Two heads are better than one.
118. Union is strength.
119. Vows made in storm are forgotten in calm.
120. Whistling maid and crowing hen are neither fit for gods nor man.


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