Archives for posts with tag: Proverbs

Where ignorance is bliss
‘Tis folly to be wise.

Thomas Gray wrote these famous lines in his Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College.

Ignorance is bliss is a phrase frequently used on its own.  If someone is unaware of some problem or difficulty, they do not worry about it.  Bliss is a word which means perfect happiness or being in heaven.

There’s one born every minute.
This expression sounds vague, but is usually intended to apply to foolish people.

He’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer.
This is another euphemism for someone who is not at all bright.

Sharpen your wits.
It is possible to improve one’s mental agility by such activities as puzzle solving, playing games and learning new skills or using skills already acquired.

You’re sharp; have you slept in the knife box?
I used to think that a cutlery box was a knife box, but I have since been informed that a knife box used to be a means of sharpening knives.

Genius is an infinite capacity for taking pains.
This is a saying.  Taking pains is an old-fashioned way of paying attention to detail.

Genius is akin to madness is a saying expressed by John Dryden in Absalom and Achitophel.

Great wits are sure to madness near allied,
And thin partitions do their bounds divide.

Words of wisdom is a phrase which may be used I many ways, either seriously or jokingly.

None the wiser means in ignorance of a particular fact or facts.

Older and wiser is the condition many adults find themselves in compared with their childhood and youth.

Bowing to superior knowledge/wisdom means accepting someone else’s advice/scheme/opinion.

Losing one’s marbles is an expression about someone whose mental faculties are diminishing.  There is now a label for people with age-related mental problems such as confusion and memory-loss.  EMI stands for elderly mentally impaired.  What this has to do with either statues made from marble (like the Elgin marbles) or glass balls which are popular with children, I do not know.

You’re a rum un.
I have only heard this expression from northerners.  Rum means strange and un is dialect for one.

She’s all there with her cough drops.
All there is an expression meaning aware of one’s surroundings and mentally competent.  Perhaps such a person would be prepared for a tickle in the throat by having lozenges with them at all times!

The Bible has lots of information about wisdom and folly.  King Solomon was renowned for his wisdom and learning.  The Book of Proverbs was mostly written by him.  Proverbs 8 and Proverbs 9 are particularly relevant to this post.

Full of the joys of spring is a saying about someone, who appears to be happy.  Spring is associated with new life, leaves, blossom and lambs gambolling in the fields.

He who laughs last laughs longest is a proverb.  I associate it with jokes played on people, who then get their own back and have the last laugh.

The joke’s on you, might be said to the first party here.  In this phrase on is used to mean against It is often cruel to tell a joke about someone else, but if you are brave enough to tell a joke about yourself it could be funny, although some people might be embarrassed for you!

That made me smile.  That” could have been a few words, an action or a change in attitude.  That brought a smile to his face.  I think an emoticon might be in order here.  🙂  I first noticed these in or after 1997 in my son’s schoolbooks.  Teachers were using them in addition to ticks and crosses.

Boisterous is energetic, (violent, rough or noisily cheerful).

Rough-and-tumble may be used as an adjective meaning irregular, disorderly or as a noun to describe a fight.  Shenanigans are nonsense, trickery or high-spirited behaviour.  (I consulted the Concise Oxford Dictionary for these three.)

One song to the tune of another is an entertainment made popular by the Radio show I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue.

Dump has many meanings one is that it is an Elizabethan dance (as in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I).

Dead pan is an expressionless face.  While it is not considered good manners to laugh at your own jokes, if you tell them dead pan your audience may not know how to react.

Mixed signals is a phrase used when someone’s body-language and words do not make their feelings clear.

There was a song intended to cheer soldiers up:-

Pack up your troubles in your old kitbag and smile, smile, smile.

Matthew 6:24-34 is a report of Jesus’ teaching about trouble and worry.