Reference > Quotations > Robert Christy, comp. > Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages
Robert Christy, comp.  Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages.  1887.
Conduct (Rules of)
Be with a man deaf and hearing, silent and speaking.  Hebrew.  1
Bind so as you may unbind.  2
Boldly nominate a spade a spade.  Ben Jonson.  3
Cast not away what you have for what you are not sure of.  4
Cast not the helve after the hatchet (Don’t despair.)  5
Catch not at the shadow and lose the substance.  6
Clear and round dealing is the honor of man’s nature.  7
Commend not your wife, wine, nor house.  8
Conceal thy domestic ills.  Thales.  9
Conquer thyself.  Chinese.  10
Cry no herring till you have it in the net.  Dutch.  11
Cultivate a chaste imagination.  12
Deride not the unfortunate.  13
Do all you can to be good and you’ll be so.  14
Do evil and look for the like.  15
Do good and care not to whom.  Italian, Portuguese.  16
Do good and then do it again.  17
Do good if you expect to receive it.  18
Do good to a knave and pray God he may not do the same to thee.  Danish.  19
Do not abandon the substance for the shadow.  20
Do not all you can, spend not all you have, believe not all you hear, tell not all you know.  21
Do not carry too much sail.  22
Do not change what you have said.  Hindu.  23
Do not look upon the vessel but upon that which it contains.  24
Do not make fish of one and flesh of another.  25
Do not meddle with clandestine affairs.  Hindu.  26
Do not neglect your own field and plough your neighbor’s.  Hindu.  27
Do not publish people’s defects.  Hindu.  28
Do not put in more warp than you can weave.  Danish.  29
Do not rake up old grievances.  30
Do not rip up old sores.  31
Do not sail too near the wind.  32
Do not say go, but go thyself.  33
Do not take hold of a nettle, but if you do, grasp it tight.  Afghan.  34
Don’t fall into the fire to be saved from the smoke.  Turkish.  35
Don’t get so anxious that you kill yourself.  North American Indian.  36
Don’t have too many irons in the fire or some will be sure to burn.  37
Don’t make yourself poor to one who won’t make you rich.  Danish.  38
Don’t pull hard enough to break the rope.  Portuguese.  39
Don’t put your finger in too tight a ring.  French, Italian.  40
Don’t rely on the label of the bag.  French.  41
Don’t scald your tongue in other people’s broth.  42
Don’t scuffle with the potter for he makes money by the damage.  Spanish.  43
Don’t send away your cat for being a thief.  Spanish.  44
Don’t shiver for last year’s snow.  45
Don’t show your teeth if you can’t bite.  French.  46
Don’t speak to the man at the wheel.  47
Don’t take too big a chip on a saplin’.  African American.  48
Don’t throw the handle after the bill. (Despair.)  Dutch.  49
Don’t wake a sleeping dog.  50
Don’t wake the drunken man.  German.  51
Don’t yoke the plough before the horses.  Dutch.  52
Drive not away what never came near you.  Danish.  53
Drown not thyself to save a drowning man.  54
Either a man or a mouse.  55
Either Cæsar or nobody.  56
Either make a spoon or spoil a horn.  57
Employ thy time well, and since thou art not sure of a minute throw not away an hour.  Franklin.  58
Hide not your light under a bushel.  59
However exalted our position, we should still not despise the powers of the humble.  Phædrus.  60
If you cannot say it point to it with your finger.  French.  61
If you cannot take it by the head take it by the tail.  Arabian.  62
If you can’t get it in bushels take it by spoonfuls.  German.  63
If you command wisely, you’ll be obeyed cheerfully.  64
If you do wrang mak amends.  65
If you intend to do a mean thing, wait until to-morrow; if a noble one, do it now.  66
If you pursue two hares both will escape from you.  Modern Greek.  67
If you stir up the mire you must bear the smell.  68
If you wish a thing done, go; if not, send.  69
In a matter of life and death trust not even your mother, she might mistake a black bean for a white one.  Alcibiades.  70
In a wood don’t walk behind another.  71
It is absurd for a man either to commend or depreciate himself.  Plutarch.  72
Ne’er scad your lips in other fowk’s kale.  73
Ne’er tell your fae when your feet sleeps.  74
Never apologize for showing feeling.  75
Never be ashamed to eat your meat.  76
Never be too much elated.  Latin.  77
Never be weary of well doing.  78
Never cast dirt into that fountain of which thou hast sometime to drink.  79
Never count four unless you have three in your bag.  80
Never cross a bridge until you come to it.  81
Never cry hallo till you are out of the woods.  82
Never deny your assistance, nor ever do any body any hurt.  French peasant.  83
Never descend to vulgarity even in joking.  Latin.  84
Never do anything of which you are ashamed.  85
Never do by proxy what you can do yourself.  Italian.  86
Never give the skin when you can pay with the wool.  German.  87
Never grieve over spilt milk.  88
Never insult people in distress.  Fable of the wanton calf.  89
Never lose a tub for a ha’p-worth of tar.  90
Never make a mountain of a mole-hill.  91
Never mourn over the past nor mope over the future.  Rev. Dr. Crowley.  92
Never neglect an opportunity for improvement.  Sir William Jones.  93
Never neglect small matters or expenses.  Italian.  94
Never order a man to do what you are afraid to do yourself.  Chinese Gordon.  95
Never praise a ford till you are over.  96
Never put your arm out further than you can draw it back again.  Baillie Jarvis.  97
Never put your thumb between your grinders.  98
Never quit certainty for hope.  99
Never refuse a good offer.  Latin, Italian.  100
Never repent a good action.  Danish.  101
Never revenge a private injury and hazard your life for the public.  Henry, Prince of Condé, to his son.  102
Never rub against the grain.  103
Never say, Fountain, I will not drink of thy water.  104
Never sigh but send.  105
Never spread your corn to dry before the door of a saintly man.  Spanish.  106
Never take anything for granted.  Benjamin Disraeli.  107
Never tread on a sore toe.  108
Never trouble trouble till trouble troubles you.  109
Never venture out of your depth till you can swim.  110
Never howl till you’re hit.  Ulster.  111
Not many things imperfectly but a few well.  112
Of what does not concern you, nothing good or bad.  Italian.  113
One should always conciliate.  German.  114
One should break his arm to save his neighbor’s neck.  German.  115
Order and do it and you’ll be rid of anxiety.  116
Produce much, consume little, labor diligently, speak cautiously.  Chinese.  117
Rather contend for valor with the brave, than for wealth with the rich, or in rapaciousness with the covetous.  Cato.  118
Rule lust, temper the tongue, and bridle the belly.  119
Rule youth an’ eild will rule itself.  120
See that in avoiding cinders you step not on burning coals.  Latin.  121
Tell no one what you would have known only to yourself.  Dutch.  122
Tell not all you know, believe not all you hear, do not all you are able.  Italian.  123
Tell not all you know nor judge of all you see if you would live in peace.  Spanish.  124
With your superiors, eat, drink, and rise fasting.  Modern Greek.  125

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