Power up with Proverbs

Proverbs store the refined wisdom of ages in short, memorable lines. Often they have several layers of understanding. This blog features a weekly proverb and explores its meaning. Sir Winston Churchill, the former British Prime Minister, war leader, writer, painter, historian, bon viveur, and very good bricklayer, recommended that people who lacked formal education should acquire a good stock of proverbs. "The Wisdom of Nations lies in their Proverbs... Collect and learn them". William Penn

Name: William Clark

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Proverbs are the wisdom of the street

We have heard quite a lot in recent years about the "wisdom of crowds" where the average opinion of a group can be surprisingly accurate.

Proverbs undergo a kind of evolution - people are making remarks and observations continually, and every now and again something that someone says or writes is picked up and repeated. Due to its wisdom and/or aptnes of phrase, over time it gains the status of a proverb.

Some of the ones we use probably go back thousands of years and have transferred from one culture to another. A proverb can gain in strength by having some poetical quality of alliteration or rhyme but this rarely translates well into another language.

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