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List of English Proverbs - S

A range of English Proverbs with explanation, listed in alphabetical order by phrase. This page contains English Proverbs that start with letter S. 

1. Second thoughts are best.
Explanation: It is dangerous to act on one’s first impulse without due thought. 

2. See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil. 
Explanation: Conventionally represented by “the three wise monkeys" covering their eyes, ears and mouth respectively with their hands and used particularly to imply a deliberate refusal to notice something that is wrong.     

3. Set a thief to catch a thief.
Explanation: Used to imply that the person best placed to catch someone out in dishonest practices is one whose own nature tends that way.  

4. Soon ripe, soon rotten. 
Explanation:  A warning against talent/maturity, meaning that notably early achievement is unlikely to be long-lasting.

5. Speech is silver, but silence is golden.
Explanation: Discretion can be more valuable than the most eloquent words.  

6. Stolen fruit are sweet. 
Explanation: The knowledge that something is forbidden makes it more attractive.    

7. Strike while the iron is hot. 
Explanation: One should take advantage of opportunity.

8. Sing before breakfast, cry before night.
Explanation: Warning against overconfidence in early happiness presaging a reversal of good fortune. 

9. Still waters run deep.
Explanation: Now commonly used to assert that a placid exterior hides a passionate nature. 

10.  Stretch your arm no further than your sleeve will reach. 
Explanation:  You should not spend more than you can afford. 

11. Spare well and have to spend.
Explanation: The person who is and careful with their resources can use them lavishly when the occasion offers.

12. Success has many fathers, while failure is an orphan.
Explanation: Once something is seen to succeed many people will claim to have initiated it, while responsibility for failure is likely to be disclaimed. 



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