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Funny Proverbs

Why keep the dog and bark yourself?

Householders keep dogs to guard their homes by barking when they hear suspicious sounds outside. Figuratively, 'to keep a dog and bark yourself'... Read more →

When in doubt leave out

This advice applies particularly to writers who are either not sure of their facts, or cannot make up their minds whether or not to include a... Read more →

What will Mrs. Grundy say?

What will the neighbours say? As is mentioned under We are all slaves of opinion, our actions are influenced by what other people may say or... Read more →

What soberness conceals, drunkenness reveals

A sober man keeps a guard on his tongue, holding back anything he wishes to hide. Strong drinks unseals his lips and he tells everything. A... Read more →

Some are wise and some are otherwise

This is a play on words. It means quite simply that some people are wise and others are not. The proverb is originally a quotation from the... Read more →

An ounce of discretion is worth a pound of wit

Don't try to be too funny at other people's expense. Your jokes make pain them or give offence.

He that hath a full purse never wanted a friend

Here 'wanted' means 'lacked. A similar proverb is Success has many friends. Because a man is rich, he is always surrounded by flatterers and... Read more →

A rich man’s joke is always funny

Money is honey, my little sonny, And a rich man's joke is always funny. This couplet is written by Thomas Edward Brown, the Manx poet. The rich... Read more →

Jam tomorrow and jam yesterday – but never jam today

If there is one day of the week that we enjoy more than the other six, today never seems to be that day. The proverb is a quotation from... Read more →

Give a dog a bad name and hang him

The phrase 'a bad name' means 'a bad reputation'. However untrue the charges may be, they may ruin a man's reputation and so 'hang him' - that... Read more →