The Dictionary of Modern Proverbs

The Dictionary of Modern Proverbs

Charles Clay Doyle
Wolfgang Mieder
Fred R. Shapiro
Copyright Date: 2012
Published by: Yale University Press
Pages: 416
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt1nq6jk
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  • Book Info
    The Dictionary of Modern Proverbs
    Book Description:

    "You can't unring a bell." "It takes a village to raise a child." "Life is just a bowl of cherries." We sometimes think of proverbs as expressions of ancient wisdom, but in fact new proverbs are constantly arising. This unique volume is devoted exclusively to English language proverbs that originated in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The most complete and accurate such collection ever compiled,The Yale Book of Modern Proverbspresents more than 1,400 individual proverbs gathered and researched with the help of electronic full-text databases not previously used for such a project.

    Entries are organized alphabetically by key words, with information about the earliest datable appearance, origin, history, and meaning of each proverb. Mundane or sublime, serious or jocular, these memorable sayings represent virtually every aspect of the modern experience. Readers will find the book almost impossible to put down once opened; every page offers further proof of the immense vitality of proverbs and their colorful contributions to the oral traditions of today.

    eISBN: 978-0-300-18335-1
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. ix-xii)

    The Dictionary of Modern Proverbsis the culmination of a unique project: an extensive, focused effort to collect proverbs that, as far as the compilers have been able to ascertain, originated in English no earlier than 1900 and to present them in a systematic fashion with illustrative quotations.

    A frequently used synonym for the wordproverbin sixteenth-century England was “old said saw.” While rightly acknowledging the fundamentallyoralcharacter of proverbs (in fact,saidandsaware cognate “saying” words), the phrase “old said saw” also voices the common impression that proverbs, by their nature, must beoldexpressions,...

  5. HOW TO READ THE ENTRIES
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  6. PROVERBS
    (pp. 1-286)

    1980 Walker Percy,The Second Coming(New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux) 93: “I didn’t get a job. I didn’t get married. . . . I didn’t move on like I was supposed to. I made straight A’s and flunked ordinary living.” 1983 Robert Coles, “Alienated Youth and Humility for the Professions,” inPreventing Adolescent Alienation, edited by L. Eugene Arnold (Lexington MA: D. C. Heath) 6: “The qualities of compassion, of self-respect, of disciplined behavior in a moral purpose— . . . these capacities we must conclude do not necessarily come with education. As Walker Percy the American novelist...

  7. APPENDIX: SOME NO LONGER “MODERN” PROVERBS
    (pp. 287-290)
  8. WORKS CITED
    (pp. 291-294)