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And gladly wolde he lerne, and gladly teche.
Nowher so besy a man as he ther n' as, ·
For gold in phisike is a cordial;
This noble ensample to his shepe he yaf,
But Cristes lore, and his apostles twelve,
And yet he had a thomb of gold parde.1
Who so shall telle a tale after a man,
For May wol have no slogardie a-night.
The Knightes Tale. Line 1044.
1 In allusion to the proverb, "Every honest miller has a golden thumb." 2 Fieldes have eies and woodes have eares. HEYWOOD: Proverbes, part ii. chap. v.
Wode has erys, felde has sigt. - King Edward and the Shepherd, MS. Circa 1300.
Walls have ears. - HAZLITT: English Proverbs, etc. (ed. 1869) p. 446.
Min be the travaille, and thin be the glorie.
Canterbury Tales. The Knightes Tale. Line 2408, To maken vertue of necessite.1 Line 3044.
And brought of mighty ale a large quart.
Ther n' is no werkman whatever he be,
The Milleres Tale. Line 3497
Yet in our ashen cold is fire yreken.
The Reves Prologue. Line 3880. The gretest clerkes ben not the wisest men. The Reves Tale. Line 4051. Line 4153.
The Marchantes Tale. Line 585.
So was hire joly whistle wel ywette.
1 Also in Troilus and Cresseide, line 1587.
To make a virtue of necessity. — SHAKESPEARE: Two Gentlemen of Verona, act iv. sc. 2. MATTHEW HENRY: Comm. on Ps. xxxvii. DRYDEN: Palamon and Arcite.
In the additions of Hadrianus Julius to the Adages of Erasmus, he remarks, under the head of Necessitatem edere, that a very familiar proverb was current among his countrymen, - -"Necessitatem in virtutem commutare " (To make necessity a virtue).
Laudem virtutis necessitati damus (We give to necessity the praise of virtue). QUINTILIAN: Inst. Orat. i. 8. 14.
HEYWOOD: Proverbs, part i. chap. ii.
2 Haste makes waste. Nothing can be done at once hastily and prudently. — PUBLIUS SYRUS: Maxim 357.
3 Ease and speed in doing a thing do not give the work lasting solidity or exactness of beauty. - PLUTARCH: Life of Pericles.
4 E'en in our ashes live their wonted fires. - GRAY: Elegy, Stanza 23. 5 Frieth in her own grease. HEYWOOD: Proverbs, part i. chap. xi. 6 To see and to be seen. - BEN JONSON: Epithalamion, st. iii. line 4. GOLDSMITH: Citizen of the World, letter 71.
Spectatum veniunt, veniunt spectentur ut ipsæ (They come to see ; they come that they themselves may be seen). -OVID: The Art of Love i. 99.
I hold a mouses wit not worth a leke,
Canterbury Tales. The Wif of Bathes Prologue. Line 6154.
Loke who that is most vertuous alway,
That he is gentil that doth gentil dedis.2
The Clerkes Tale. Part v.
They demen gladly to the badder end.
Therefore behoveth him a ful long spone,
Fie on possession, But if a man be vertuous withal.
Truth is the highest thing that man may keep.
The Frankeleines Prologue. Line 10998.
Full wise is he that can himselven knowe.1
The Frankeleines Tale. Line 11789.
The Monkes Tale. Line 1449.
Know then thyself, presume not God to scan;
1 Consider the little mouse, how sagacious an animal it is which never entrusts his life to one hole only. - PLAUTUS: Truculentus, act iv. sc. 4. The mouse that always trusts to one poor hole Can never be a mouse of any soul.
POPE: Paraphrase of the Prologue, line 298. 2 Handsome is that handsome does. - GOLDSMITH: Vicar of Wakefield, chap. i.
3 Hee must have a long spoon, shall eat with the devill. -- HEYWOOD: Proverbes, part ü. chap. v.
He must have a long spoon that must eat with the devil. - SHAKESPEARE Comedy of Errors, act iv. sc. 3.
4 Thales was asked what was very difficult; he said, "To know one's self." DIOGENES LAERTIUS: Thales, ix.
POPE: Epistle ii. line 1.
Mordre wol out, that see we day by day.1
But all thing which that shineth as the gold
Canterbury Tales. The Nonnes Preestes Tale. Line 15058.
The Chanones Yemannes Tale. Line 16430.
The firste vertue, sone, if thou wilt lere,
Right as an aspen lefe she gan to quake.
Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.1
1 Murder, though it have no tongue, will speak
Book iii. Line 1625,
SHAKESPEARE: Hamlet, act ii. sc. 2.
2 Tyrwhitt says this is taken from the Parabolae of ALANUS De Insulis, who died in 1294, - Non teneas aurum totum quod splendet ut aurum (Do not hold everything as gold which shines like gold).
All is not golde that outward shewith bright. - LYDGATE: On the Mutability of Human Affairs.
Gold all is not that doth golden seem.. -SPENSER: Faerie Queene, book ii. canto viii. st. 14.
All that glisters is not gold. - SHAKESPEARE: Merchant of Venice, act ii. sc. 7. GOOGE: Eglogs, etc., 1563. HERBERT: Jacula Prudentum.
All is not gold that glisteneth. - MIDDLETON: A Fair Quarrel, verse 1. All, as they say, that glitters is not gold. - DRYDEN: The Hind and the Panther.
Que tout n'est pas or c'on voit luire (Everything is not gold that one sees shining). Li Diz de freire Denise Cordelier, circa 1300.
8 Many small make a great. HEYWOOD: Proverbes part i. chap. xi. 4 Of two evils the less is always to be chosen. -THOMAS À KEMPIS: Imitation of Christ, book ii. chap. xii. HOOKER: Polity, book v. chap. lxxxi.
Of two evils I have chose the least. - PRIOR: Imitation of Horace.
E duobus malis minimum eligendum (Of two evils, the least should be chosen). ERASMUS: Adages. CICERO: De Officiis, iii. 1.
He helde about him alway, out of drede,
A world of folke.
Canterbury Tales. Troilus and Creseide. Book iii. Line 1721. One eare it heard, at the other out it went.1
Book iv. Line 435.
Eke wonder last but nine deies never in toun.2
The Court of Love. Line 178.
The lyfe so short, the craft so long to lerne,
For out of the old fieldes, as men saithe,
Of all the floures in the mede, Than love I most these floures white and rede, Soch that men callen daisies in our toun.
That well by reason men it call may
Prologue of the Legend of Good Women. Line 41.
For iii may keep a counsel if twain be away.
The Ten Commandments of Love.
1 Went in at the tone eare and out at the tother. - HEYWOOD: Proverbes, part ii. chap. ix.
2 This wonder lasted nine daies. - HEYWOOD: Proverbes, part ii. chap. i.
8 Ars longa, vita brevis (Art is long life is brief). HIPPOCRATES : Aphorism i.
4 Three may keepe counsayle, if two be away. - HEYWOOD: Proverbes, part ii. chap. v.