Reference > Quotations > Robert Christy, comp. > Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages
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Robert Christy, comp.  Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages.  1887.
 
Wit
 
A dinner of wits is proverbially a palace of silence.  Benjamin Disraeli.  1
A wit’s a feather and a child’s a rod;
An honest man is the noblest work of God.  Pope.
  2
After-wit is commonly dear bought.  3
All the wit in the world is useless to him who has none.  La Bruyère.  4
An ounce of mother-wit is worth a pound of clergy.  Scotch.  5
An ounce of mother-wit is worth a pound of school-wit.  German.  6
An ounce of wit that’s bought is worth a pound that’s taught.  7
Better a witty fool than a foolish wit.  8
Big head little wit.  French, German.  9
Bought wit is best but may cost too much.  10
Buffoonery and scurrility are the corruption of wit, as knavery is of wisdom.  11
Even wit’s a burden when it talks too long.  Dryden.  12
Every ditch is full of after-wit.  Italian.  13
Good wits jump.  14
Great wit to madness sure is near allied,
A thin partition does their bounds divide.  Dryden.
  15
Great wits meet.  French.  16
Half witted folk speak much and say little.  17
He has more wit in his head than Samson had in both shoulders.  18
He hath more wit in his little finger than there is in thy whole body.  19
He hath some wit but a great fool hath the guidance of it.  20
He is at his wit’s end.  21
His clothes are worth pounds but his wit is dear at a groat.  22
His wit is as sharp as a wooden pestle.  Tamil.  23
Intemperate wits will spare neither friend nor foe.  L’Estrange.  24
Little wit in the head makes much work for the feet.  25
Love of wit makes no man rich.  26
Many that are wits in jest are fools in earnest.  27
Might and courage require wit in their suit.  Danish.  28
Much laughter little wit.  Portuguese.  29
No fools so insufferable as those who affect to be wits.  Giles’ Proverbs.  30
No house is big enough for two wits to live in together.  31
Nothing more smooth than glass, yet nothing more brittle,
Nothing more fine than wit, yet nothing more fickle.
  32
Nuremburg wit and a skilful hand,
Will find their way through every land.  German.
  33
Quick wits are generally conceited.  34
Shallow wits censure everything that is beyond their depth.  35
The less wit a man has the less he knows he wants it.  36
The life of a wit is a warfare on earth.  Warton.  37
The wit one wants spoils what one has.  French.  38
They who have most wit or money are most sparing of either.  Pope.  39
’Tis an unhappy wit that stirs up enemies against itself.  40
’Tis wit to pick a lock and steal a horse, but ’tis wisdom to let it alone.  41
True wit is nature to advantage drest,
What oft was thought but ne’er as well expressed.  Pope.
  42
Use your wit as a buckler, not as a sword.  43
Want o’ wit is war than want o’ wealth.  44
Weak men had need be witty.  45
Where there is no wit within no wit will come out.  Danish.  46
Wit and judgment often are at strife,
Though meant each other’s aid, like man and wife.  Pope.
  47
Wit and wisdom are rarely seen together.  Richardson.  48
Wit bought is better than wit sought.  49
Wit does not take the place of knowledge.  50
 
 
Wit ill applied is a dangerous weapon.  51
Wit in a poor man’s head and moss on the mountain avail nothing.  52
Wit is folly unless a wise man hath the keeping of it.  53
Wit is the epidemical madness of the French.  Rousseau.  54
Wit is the most rascally, contemptible, beggarly thing on the face of the earth.  Murphy.  55
Wit is the salt of conversation, not the food.  Hazlitt.  56
Wit may be bought too dear.  57
Wit may work what wishes want.  58
Wit once taught is worth twice bought.  59
Wit that can creep and pride that licks the dust.  Pope.  60
Wit which borders on profaneness deserves to be branded with folly.  Tillotson.  61
Wit without discretion is a sword in the hand of a fool.  62
Wit without wisdom cuts other men’s meat and its own fingers.  63
Witticisms spare no one.  64
You have not wit enough to drown ships in.  65
You were born when wit was scant.  66
Your wits are gone a wool-gathering.  67
 
 
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