French Proverbs from 1611: Starting with the letter A

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

known | booze | church | clothes | devil | dirty | english | farm | food | fool | friends | government | illness | latin | love | luck | marriage | money | music/dance | animals | theft | war | women


Abandon fait larron; [Prov.] Things carelesly left, layd vp, or looked vnto, make them theeues that otherwise would be honest: we say, fast bind fast find.
[Abandon fait larron:] [Prov.] [Things left at randon cause true men turne theeues.]


[`A barbe de fol hardi rasoir:] [Prov.] The razor may boldly graze on a fooles beard.
[`A barbe de fol le rasoir est mol:] [Prov.] A foole brookes any disgrace; A foole's not sensible of any wrong.
[`A barbe de fol on apprend à raire:] [Prov.] By shauing a foole one learnes to shaue.
[`A barbe de fol on apprend à raire:] [Prov.] [By trimming fooles about the gill, a Barbers prentise learns his skill; or, by doing a thing ill one learns to doe much better; vnseemelie presidents are warnings to the wise.]


[Abbe & convent ce n'est qu'un; mais la bourse se garde en divers lieux:] [Prov.] An Abbot and Couent though but one bodie haue seuerall mindes, ends, or meanes.


[A beau parler closes oreilles:] [Pro.] [For glosing words well-closed eares.]
[`A beau parler closes oreilles:] [Pro.] [Oppose to glosing words a closed eare.]


[`A bon bluteur may propice:] [Pro.] [Somewhat as stiffe as a maypole does well with him that boults in a fleshlie tub.]
[`A bon bluteur May propice:] [Prov.] [A wooer speeds (oft times) the better for his weapon.]


[`A bon chien bon os:] [Prov.] [A good dog deserues a good bone; a good seruant good intertainment; but;] [`A vn bon chien n'escheut onques bon os:] [Pro.] [A good dog neuer lights on a good bone; or, the worst bones euer fall to the best dogs share; the honest man hath still the worst lucke.]


[`A bon demandeur bon refuseur:] [Prov.] A bold asker is best matched by a resolute denier.
[`A bon demandeur bon refuseur:] [Prov.] Wee say, shamefull crauing must haue a shamefull nay.


[`A bon entendeur ne faut qu'une parole:] [Pro.] The wise vnderstand a man by one word.
[`A bon entend tu ne faut qu'un demy mot:] [Prov.] [A good wit's well inform'd by halfe a Word.]
[`A bon enten-tu il ne fault qu'un demy mot:] [Prov.] A good wit needs but one word to informe it; or, a wise man pickes whole sence from halfe a word.


[`A bon iour bonne estreine:] [Prov.] On so holie a day happie successe betide vs [(Sometimes tis also applyed (Ironically, and in a contrarie sence) vnto one, that on a great day commits any grieuous offence) he hath han selled the day fairely;] or, faire betide him for his goodlie act on so godlie a day.


[`A bon iour bon oeuvre, & bonnes paroles:] [Pro.] A good day would be solemnized with good works, and good words.
[`A bon iour bon oeuvre, & bonnes paroles:] [Prov.] [Good workes, and words are fittest for good dayes.]
[`A bon iour bon oeuvre:] [Prov.] [A goodlie act on a godlie day;] or, as we say, the better day the better work; [(tis also taken Ironically, and in a contrarie sence)] he hath honoured so good a day with a goodlie act indeed; [(of one that on a holy day commits a haynous deed.)]


[`A bon rat bon chat:] [Prov.] Two knaues well met, or matched.


[`A bon vin il ne faut point d'enseigne:] [Prov.] Good wine draws customers without any help of an iuy-bush.


[`A celuy qui a sa paste au four on doit donner de son tourteau:] [Prov.] [Be not a niggard vnto him thats able to requite thee.]
[`A celuy qui a son pasté au four on doit donner de son tourteau:] [Prov.] [Giue of thy pie to him that hath a pastie; doe good to him thats able to requite thee.]


[`A chair de loup sauce de chien:] [Prov.] the best sauce for course meat is hunger (or) the fittest intertainment for a knaue, a cudgell.


[`A chasque mercier son panier:] [Pro.] [Euerie one is to support, or looke vnto, his owne charge.]
[`A chasque mercier son pannier:] [Pro.] [Let each man his owne burthen beare.]


[`A chasque trou vne cheville:] [Pro.] For euerie fault an excuse, for each obiection an answer; for any mischiefe a remedie, helpe, euasion.


[Achete paix, & maison faitte:] [Prov.] [Buy peace, and a house (alreadie) made;] [like whereunto is]; [Il fault acheter maison faitte, & femme à faire:] [Pro.] [Purchase a house readie made, but let thy wife be of thine owne making.]
[Achette paix, & maison faicte:] [Prov.] [Peace, and a house thats built, are to be bought.]


[`A coeur dolent la bouche souspire:] [Prov.] [Sighes in the mouth, sorrow at the heart.]
[`A coeur dolent l'oeil pleure:] [Prov.] [A weeping eye, a wofull heart.]
[`A coeur dolent l'oeil pleure:] [Prov.] [A weeping eye discouers the sad heart; moist eyes mournefull heart.]
[`A coeur dolent l'oeil pleure:] [Prov.] Teares in the eyes, ruth in the heart.


[A conseil de fol cloche de bois:] [Prov.] Call fooles to counsell by a woodden bell.
[`A conseil de fol cloche de bois:] [Prov.] For woodcocks counsels woodden bells.
[`A conseil de fol cloche de bois:] [Prov.] For woodden consultations woodden bells.
[`A conseil de fol cloche de bois:] [Prov.] When loggarheads consult logs serue for bells.


[`A courte chausse longue laniere:] [Prov.] (So that what wants in the one may bee supplied by the other.)
[`A courte chausse longue laniere:] [Prov.] [To short hose long points, and wide trussing;] or [(which is of harder disgestion;) let one mans store supply anothers wants.]


[`A cul de foirard tousiours abonde merde:] [Prov.] A filthie tale seld wanteth filthie Auditors.
[`A cul de foirard tousiours abonde merde:] [Prov.] A shitten taile hath euer store of ordure; a shitten fellow is stored with filthie humours, or scuruie followers.
[`A cul de foirard tousiours abonde merde:] [Prov.] [There wants no turd at shitten fellowes tayles.]


[`A dure enclume marteau de plume:] [Pro.] [By gentlenesse, and patience we surmount all difficulties: So doe skilfull Enginers oppose bags of wooll, and walls of soft earth, vnto the furie of the Cannon.]
[`A dure enclume marteau de plume:] [Prov.] [By patience we quaile, or quell all harsh attempts: and now adayes we see bags of wooll, and walls of soft earth opposed to the furie of the Cannon.]


[`A dur, ou mauvais noeud mauvais coing:] [Prov.] [Sayd of a swaggering, or litigious fellow, matched with one, in his owne kind, worse then himselfe.]


[`A faincte Foire chandelle de merde:] [Prov.] A gift agreable to her nature, or humor; fit (and filthie) Lettuce for her (stinking) lips.


[`A fol avantureux n'est mestier d'avoir sens:] [Prov.] An enterprizing foole needs little wit.


[`A fol conteur sage escouteur:] [Prov.] A foolish talker had need to find a wise hearer; or, let him talke neuer so foolishly, they are wise enough that heare him.
[`A fol conteur sage escouteur:] [Prov.] While fooles doe speake wise men had need to heare.


[`A fol ne faut point de sonnette:] [Prov.] [A foole needs neither bell nor bable; his words, and actions quickly will discouer him.]
[`A fol ne faut point de sonnette:] [Prov.] (So quickly his words, and gesture tell you what he is.)


[`A gens de bien on ne perd rien:] [Prov.] [He that deales with honest men is seldome, or neuer a looser; one looses nought by good men.]
[`A gens de bien on ne pert rien:] [Prov.] [One seldome looses by dealing with, or dwelling neere, honest men.]


[`A goupil endormy rien ne tombe en la gueule:] [Prov.] [He that knowes what's fit to be done, and vses to sleepe when it should be done, liues a beast, and dies a begger.]


[`A grand cheval grand gué:] [Prov.] [A great horse a great Foord must haue.]
[`A grand cheval grand gué:] [Prov.] A great horse must haue a great foord.
[`A grand cheval grand gué:] [Prov.] [A tall horse can make shift with a deepe foord;] or, what needes a tall horse for a shallow foord?


[`A grand danger grand courage:] [Prov.] Courage, when danger is, had need be great.
[`A grand danger grand courage:] [Prov.] Great courage is in greatest dangers tryed;
[`A grand danger grand courage:] [Prov.] [Great dangers are by courage great orecome;] or, much danger needs much courage.


[`A grand homme grand verre:] [Prov.] [A great man cannot vse a little glasse; men should be fitted in things of much vse.]
[`A grand homme grand verre:] [Prov.] [A little glasse befits not a great gulch.]


[`A grand pecheur esclandre:] [Prov.] [Great shame is the great sinners meed.]
[`A grand pecheur esclandre:] [Prov.] Great sinners euer come to shame.
[`A grand pecheur esclandre:] [Prov.] [Shame is the lot of sinne.]


[`A grand pescheur eschappe anguille:] [Pro.] [An Eele escapes from th'expert Angler.]
[`A grand pescheur eschappe anguille:] [Prov.] [The Eele escapes the cunning fishers hands.]


[`A gros larron grosse corde:] [Prov.] A strong theefe deserues (or needs) a strong halter.
[`A grosse larron grosse corde:] [Prov.] A strong halter for a strong theefe.


[`A haute monté e le faix encombre;] [Prov.] [He that climbes high feels euerie small weight heauie.]
[`A haute monté e le faix encombre:] [Prov.] To a high climber a burden is combersome.


[Aile d'ange, & voix de Diable:] [Prov.] An Angels wing, and deuils voice (the stile of a Peacocke.)


[Aimer & sç avoir n'ont mesme manoir:] [Prov.] Loue and knowledge liue not together.


[Ainsi va qui mieux ne peut:] [Prov.] [He must doe thus who can no better doe.]
[Ainsi va qui mieux ne peut:] [Prov.] He poorely goes that cannot richly goe; hee barely liues that cannot brauely liue; euen so goes he that cannot better goe.


[`A jeune soldat vieil cheval:] [Prov.] [A young souldier would be fitted with an old horse; (both to temper his heat, and to helpe his ignorance.)]


[`A la chandelle la chevre semble belle:] [Prov.] Hee that chuses a wife by candle-light, or by other eyes than his owne, may perhaps be fouly deceiued.
[`A la chandelle la Chevre semble Damoiselle:] [Pro.] By candle-light a shee Goat seemes a Gentlewoman; [(where, by the candle, is meant a mans owne affection, or the opinion of another; either of which followed wholly in the choice of a wife, hath often proued erronious.)]


[`A la continuë l'eau cave la pierre:] [Prov.] At length, or in continuance of time, the water pierceth stone.


[A l'advocat le pied en main:] [Prov.] [ascauoir, de perdris, faisans, chappons & c.]
[`A l'Advocat le pied en main:] [Prov.] [viz. Of Partridges, Phesants, Capons, & c. wherewith they looke to be now and then presented.]


[`A la faim il n'y a point de mauvais pain:] [Prov.] [Hunger makes any thing tast well.]
[`A la faim il n'y a point de mauvais pain:] [Prov.] To him thats hungrie any bread seemes good; we say, hungrie dogs loue durtie puddings.


[`A la fin le regnard sera moine:] [Prov.] [At length the Fox turnes Monke; (viz. when hee can play the knaue no longer.)]


[`A la fin sç aura on qui a mangé le lard:] [Prov.] [A theefe, how cunning soeuer, will at the length be discouered.]
[`A la fin sç aura on qui a mangé le lard:] [Prov.] The theefe will be at length discouered (howsoeuer he conceale, or, how cunningly soeuer he carrie, himselfe.)


[A l'agneler verra on lesquelles sont prains:] [Prov.] At lambing time we find what Ewes were full.


[`A la goutte le medecin ne voit goutte:] [Prov.] [(As they find (by the little helpe they find) that haue it, and take Physick for it.)]


[`A l'aise marche à pied qui mene son cheval par la bride:] [Prov.] Troubles are but trifles vnto them, that haue meanes enow to ease, or strength enough to ouercome, them.


[`A l'an soixante & douze, temps est que l'on se house:] [Prov.] [At 72 we had need to thinke of our last deed.]


[`A la preuve l'on escorche l'Asne;] [Pro.] [(Applyable vnto such things as cannot be tryed without danger.)]
[`A la preuve l'on escorche l'asne:] [Prov.] [By prouing, attempting, or laying the hands to, an Asse is flayed;] [viz. a difficultie is compassed; a difference compounded.]


[`A la quenouille le fol s'agenouille:] [Prov.] [Fooles kneele to distaues, weake men vnto women.]


[`A la queuë gist le venin:] [Prov.] [Appliable to such as reserue the discouerie, or execution


[`A la Saincte Luce du saut d'une pulce:] [Prov.] [viz. Le iour croist.]


[`A la S. Barnabé la faux au pré:] [Prov.] [(That is about the eleuenth of June.)]


[`A la S. Martin lon boit le bon vin:] [Prov.] [At Martilmas wine is fit to be drunke.]


[`A la trongne cognoist on l'yvrongne:] [Prov.] [A drunkard is by his rich face discerned.]
[`A la trongne cognoist on l'yvrongne:] [Prov.] [Two things a drunkard doe disclose, a fierie face, and crimson nose.]


[`A l'enclume le marteau:] [Prov.] A quarrelling, mutinous, or litigious fellow should be matched with one thats worse then himselfe; or, a hard heart needs hammering.
[`A l'enclume le marteau:] [Prov.] [(Said when a contentious, or litigious swaggerer meets, or is matched, with a worse then himselfe.)]


[`A l'enfourner on fait les pains cornus:] [Prov.] A carelesse, erronious, or ignorant entrance into a busines disorders the whole course of it, and, in conclusion, mars it; of the same sence is; [Qui mal enfourne tire les pains cornus:] [Prov.] He that begins vnfeatly ends ill-fauoredly.
`A l'enfourner on fait les pains cornus (ou cocus:) [Prov.] [In the beginning of a cause are faults the soonest made, and (once made) worst amended;] or, the beginning shewes what to presume of the rest.


[`A l'entrée de la ville est le commencement des maisons:] [Prov.] [The building begin at the townegate; One may ghesse at a mans whole speech by his Proeme; and by his first course what will be his whole proceeding.]


[`A l'hospital les bons ouvriers, en dignité les gros asniers:] [Prov.] [Bunglers grow rich, good workemen wretched; the cogging sot gets honour while the cunning workman starues.]


[`A l'hostel priser, & au marché vendre:] [Prov.] [Prise goods at home, but sell them in the market.]
[`A l'hostel priser, & au marché vendre:] [Prov.] [Set prices on thy things at home, but passe them away abroad.]
[`A l'hostel priser, & au marché vendre:] [Prov.] [Value at home, but sell in the market.]
[`A l'hostel priser, & au marché vendre:] [Prov.] [Rate they commodities at home, but sell them abroad.]


[Aller & parler peut on, boire & manger non:] [Pro.] One may visit a friend sometimes, but must not if hee looke to bee welcome (another time) stay long with him.
[Aller & parler peut on, boire ensemble & manger non:] [Prov.] [Such as desire to continue a friend, must not feed on him;] or, tis better to visit a friend sometimes then to dwell with him euer.
[Aller & venir font le chemin peler:] [Pro.] Much trauelling makes bad wayes.
[Aller & parler peut on, boire ensemble & manger non:] [Pro.] A man may visit, & conuerse with a friend, but must not, if he meane to keepe him, feed with him; the best way to preserue a friend, is, not to be verie inward with him.


[`A l'oeil malade la lumiere nuit:] [Pro.] [An eye distempered cannot brooke the light; sicke thoughts cannot indure the truth.]
[`A l'oeil malade la lumiere nuit:] [Prov.] [Light hurts diseased eyes;] or, a sicke eye is offended with the light.


[`A l'oeure on cognoist l'ouvrier:] [Pro.] [One may discerne a workman by his worke.]
[`A l'oeuvre on cognoist l'ouvrier:] [Prov.] [The worke bewrayes the man that did it.]


[`A longue corde tire qui d'autruy mort desire:] [Prov.] Hee that longs for another mans death, hath a long (or a cold) suit of it; We say, he that waits for dead mens shoone shall goe long barefoot.


[à lauer la teste d'un asne on ne perd que le temps, & la lexive:] [Pro.] [In vaine one striues to make learned a sottish, or make honest a gracelesse, person.]


[A main lavé e Dieu mande la repeuë:] [Prov.] God sends his blessings to cleane hands, and hearts.
[`A main lavé e Dieu mande la repeuë:] [Prov.] [God sends th'vpright all necessarie food.]
[`A main lavé e Dieu mande la repeuë:] [Prov.] [The heauens powre downe their blessings on th'vpright.]


[`A mau chat mau rat:] [Prov.] [Two knaues well met.]


[`A mauvais chien la queuë luy vient:] [Pro.] [Rakehells thriue better, battle faster, come forward sooner (after a losse) then honester men.]
[`A mauvais chien la queuë luy vient:] [Prov.] An ill weed growes apace.


[`A mauvais chien ne peut on monstrer le loup:] [Prov.] [A bad dog hates to looke vpon a wolfe.]
[`A mauvais chien ne peut on monstrer le loup:] [Prov.] An ill dog hates to looke on a wolfe.


[`A meschant chien court lien:] [Prov.] A froward curre must be tied short; a currish fellow well fettered; [(so will they doe least hurt.)]


[`A midi estoille ne luit:] [Prov.] At mid day no starre shines;
[`A midi estoille ne luit:] [Prov.] [Euerie thing hath it season; and, he that looks for night at noone-dayes may well be tearmed mad, or blind.]


[`A mol pasteur le loup chie laine:] [Prov.] [A gentle Pastor makes the Wolfe cacke wooll.]
[`A mol Pasteur le loup chie laine:] [Prov.] [A gentle shepheard makes the Wolfe shite wooll.]
[`A mol pasteur le loup chie laine:] [Prov.] [A gentle shepheard stuffes the wolfe with wooll.]


[`A morceau restif esperon de vin:] [Prov.] (A cup of sacke agrees with a cold stomacke;) a restiue morsell needs a spurre of wine.
[`A morceau restif esperon de vin:] [Prov.] [Put on a restiue bit with spurres of wine.]


[Amour, & seigneurie ne se tindrent iamais compagnie:] [Prov.] Loue, and lordlinesse neuer held companie together; a friend, and a lord are incompatible.


[Amour apprend les asnes à danser:] [Pro.] Loue makes the cokes turne courtier.


[Amour de garse, & faut de chien ne dure si l'on ne dit, tien:] [Prov.] Whores and dogs fawne on a man no longer then he feeds them; or, a whores loue, and a dogs leaping continue but while they are fed.


[Amour de muge:] [Pro.] Faithfull loue of a wife to her husband; (The female Mullet will rather be caught by fishermen then abandon her Make.)


[Amour de putain feu d'estoupe:] [Pro.] [(Th'exposition followes)] [qui luit fort, & dure peu.]
[Amour de putain feu d'estoupe:] [Prov.] [(Th'exposition is) [qui luit fort, & dure peu.]


[Amour de Seigneur est ombre de buisson:] [Prov.] The loue of a great man is either momentarie, or dangerous.
[Amour de seigneur est ombre de buisson:] [Prov.] The loue of a great man is of small continuance, and dangerous consequence.


[Amour faict beaucoup, mais argent faict tout:] [Pro.] Loue is potent, but money omnipotent.
[Amour fait beaucoup, mais argent fait tout:] [Prov.] Loue does much, but money does all.


[Amour se nourrit de ieune chair:] [Prov.] [Yong flesh is a great nourishment to loue.]
[Amour se nourrit de ieune chair:] [Prov.] Yong flesh is food for loue, loue battles with yong flesh.


[Amour vaine tout fors que coeur felon:] [Pro.] Loue ouercomes any thing but a froward, or spightfull, heart.
[Amour vaine tout fors que le coeur felon:] [Prov.] Loue conquers any thing but a fellonious heart.


[Anguilles de Melun (qui crient avant qu'on les escorche:)] [Pro.] Cowardly apprehenders of a mischiefe before it happen; such as yeeld before the danger, or crie before their paine approch them.


[Anjourd'huy marié demain marri:] [Prov.] [Maried to day, marred to morrow; to day wedded, to morrow wretched.]


[`A Noel au perron, à Pasques au tison:] [Prov.] [At Christmas in the Sunne, at Easter by the fire.]
[`A Noel au perron, à Pasques au tison:] [Prov.] [At Christmas in the Sunne, at Easter by the fire (you must warme you.)]
[`A Noel au perron, à Pasques au tison:] [Prov.] [At Christmas warme thee in the Sunne, at Easter by the fire.]


[`A pain, & oignon trompette, ne clairon:] [Prov.] Hard fare, poore dyet, course Acates require neither State in the seruing, nor Musicke in the eating; or, the sound of forraine Trumpets is but seldome heard in a poore, and barren State.


[`A panse chaude pied endormy:] [Pro.] [When a man is full, he is fitter to sleepe then to runne.]


[`A paroles lourdes sourdes oreilles:] [Prov.] [Heedlesse attention vnto hoggish tearmes.]
[`A paroles lourdes sourdes oreilles:] [Prov.] [Let th' eares be deafe when words grow rude; harsh tearmes are most vnworthie of attention.]


[`A pauvres gens menuë monnoye:] [Prov.] [Small money suffices, or fits, the poore.]


[`A peine cognoist on la femme, & le Melon:] [Prov.] [(The meaning is, vntill they be broken, or cut vp; and, the outside is often the best part of them.)]


[A peine endure mal qui ne l'a appris:] [Pro.] [Hardly can he brooke miserie that neuer any bore.]
[`A peine endure mal qui ne l'a appris:] [Prov.] Hee hardly beares affliction that neuer tried any.


[`A pere, à maistre, à Dieu tout puissant, nul ne peut rendre l'equivalent:] [Prov.] [No man can doe ynough for his father, maister, and Maker.]


[`A pere amasseur fils gaspilleur:] [Pro.] [A warie father hath a wastfull sonne;] [The like is]; [De pere gardien fils garde-rien:] [Pro.]
[`A pere amasseur fils gaspilleur:] [Prov.] [A wastfull sonne succeeds a wretched father.]


[`A petit chien petit lien:] [Prov.] Weake passions need but weake restraints.


[`A petite achoison le loup prend le mouton:] [Prov.] [When Tyrants will oppresse th'innocent, a sleight pretext is made sufficient.]


[`A petite fontaine boit on và son aise:] [Prov.] In a meane estate most ease.


[`A peu parler bien besongner:] [Pro.] [Lets haue fewer words, and more deeds;] or, good deeds are (commonly) dispatched in fewest words.


[`A plaideur plaideur & demi:] [Prov.] [Said of a knaue well matcht with a worse then himselfe.]


[`A povre coeur petit souhait:] [Pro.] [An humble heart breedes homelie wishes.]
[`A povre coeur petit souhait:] [Pro.] [The poore mans heart hath low thoughts, meane desires.]
[`A povre coeur petit souhait:] [Prov.] Little things content low thoughts; or, an humble heart is humble in desires.
[`A povres gens menue monnoye:] [Prov.] [Small money satisfies, or serues, the needie.]


[Apres besongne faitte le fol barguigne:] [Prov.] The foole beginnes to wrangle when his worke is ended; or, When worke is ended fooles fall out about it; [(viz. for want of agreeing before hand.)]
[Apres besongne faitte le fol barguigne:] [Pro.] Wise men doe the worke, and fooles agree for it.


[Apres besongne repos, & denier:] [Prov.] Ease and wealth are the rewards of labour; or, when a man hath done his worke, he loues to rest, and lookes to be paid.
[Apres besongne repos & denier:] [Prov.] Ease and wealth succeed labour;


[Apres beu dodo:] [Prov.] [After drinke rest.]
[Apres bu dodo:] [Prov.] [After liquor lazinesse.]
[Apres bu dodo:] [Prov.] After swink sleepe.


[Apres bon vin bon cheval:] [Prov.] [After a man hath drunke hard he dare any thing.]
[Apres bon vin bon cheval:] [Prov.] The pot hath made him valiant, and of a free humour; now that he hath drunke hard he dare swagger with any man, or censure euerie man.


[Apres compter il faut boire:] [Prov.] The reckoning ended we must drinke together; [(a Dutch conclusion.)]


[Apres grand banquet petit pain:] [Prov.] After feasting fasting.


[Apres grande monté e grande vallé e:] [Prov.] [After toyle rest, after paine ease.]
[Apres grande monté e grande vallé e:] [Prov.] [They that the highest climbe the lowest fall.] [Apres grande vallé e rude monté e:] [Prov.] [The contrarie.]
[Apres grande vallé e rude monté e:] [Pro.] [After great rest much toyle; after much ease great paine.]


[Apres gros tonnerre force eau sur la terre:] [Prov.] [After a furious thunder much raine the earth doth blunder.]


[Apres la feste & le Ieu, les pois au feu:] [Prov.] After feasting and iollitie, sobrietie.
[Apres la feste & le ieu les pois au feu:] [Prov.] [Those that will make good shift, must after play vse thrift.]
[Apres la feste & le Ieu, les pois au feu:] [Prov.] After feasting and iollitie, sobrietie.


[Apres la feste on grate la teste:] [Prov.] [Repentance begins where feasting ends.]
[Apres la feste on grate la teste:] [Prov.] [(viz: After a feast made.)]


[Apres la mort le medecin:] [Pro.] [After death drugs; the mischiefe past, a remedie.]
[Apres la mort le medecin:] [Prov.] [After meat mustard; when steed is stolne shut the stable doore.]


[Apres la poire le vin, ou le prestre:] [Prov.] [After a (cold) Peare either drinke wine to concoct it, or send for the Priest to confesse you.]
[Apres la poire le vin, ou le prestre:] [Prov.] [After a (cold) Peare Wine, or the Priest.]
[Apres la poire le vin, ou le prestre:] [Prov.] [After a peare wine, or the Priest.]


[Apres Pasques, & Rogation, fy de Prestre; & d'oignon:] [Prov.] [After the weeke of Easter, and Rogation, a Priest, and Onyons are abhomination.]
[Apres Pasques, & Rogation, fi de prestre, & d'oignon:] [Prov.] [(Belike because in hot weather, which comes quickly after, they stinke both alike.)]


[Apres perdre perd on bien:] [Prov.] [One ill lucke succeeds in the necke of another;] or, when one begins to loose he leaues not vntill all be gone.


[Apres raire n'y a que tondre:] [Prov.] [Sheeres after shauing find no worke to doe.]


[Apres tout dueil boit on bien:] [Pro.] (So tipling succeedeth teene.)
[Apres tout dueil boit on bien:] [Prov.] Drinke after dole goes merrily downe; or, they tiple now as much as erst they teend.


[Aprez raire n'y a que tondre:] [Prov.] [Sheeres vpon shauen places doe no good; nought's to be got where all's alreadie gone.]


[`A quelque chose malheur est bon:] [Prov.] [Tis an ill wind that blowes no man to good.]


[`A qui chapon mange chapon luy vient:] [Pro.] He that eates good meat shall haue good meat.
[`A qui chapon mange chapon luy vient:] [Pro.] [Spend and God will send.]


[`A qui Dieu veut aider sa femme luy meurt:] [Prov.] The wife of him whom God will helpe soone dyes.


[à qui est l'asne si le garde:] [Prov.] Let him that owes a thing looke to it.
[`A qui est l'asne si le tienne par la queuë:] [Pro.] [Let him that owes th'Asse hold him by the tayle; he that hath a suit to follow, or a thing to keepe, may thinke no Solicitor so good, no watchman so fit, as himselfe.]


[`A qui il mesarrive on luy mesfaict:] [Prov.] [(So apt are men to wrong th'vnfortunate.)]


[`A qui meschet on luy mesoffre:] [Prov.] [those whom necessitie, or misfortune forces to sell, are neuer offered the full worth of things.]


[Arbre trop souvent transplanté ne porte pas fruict à planté:] [Prov.] [The ouer-oft remoued plant's not plentifull.]


[`A regnard endormi rien ne chet en la gueule:] [Prov.] [Nothing is got by drowsinesse; preferment must be watched, sought, and sued for; it falls not into idle hands, or sleeping mouthes.]


[`A regnard regnard & demi:] [Pro.] [Let craft meet, or be matcht, with cunning.]


[Argent ard gent:] [Prov.] Mony burnes many; [(viz. the loue thereof enflames their hearts.)]


[Argent comptant porte medicine:] [Prov.] Readie money is a readie medicine; or, procures any medicine.
[Argent contant porte medicine:] [Prov.] Ready money is a readie medicine.


[Argent faict guerre:] [Prov.] [Money makes warre:] [viz: incites men to vndertake, and enables them to vndergoe, it.
[Argent faict guerre:] [Prov.] viz. It moues men to begin, and enables them to follow, it.


[Argent faict rage, & amour mariage:] [Pro.] Money breeds rage, loue mariage.


[Argent faict tout:] [Prov.] All (earthly) things are commanded, and compassed, by it.


[Argent fait pendre les gens:] [Pro.] [Money brings many a man to the gallowes.]


[Argent frais, & nouveau ruine le Iouvenceau:] [Pro.] Th'aboundant, or free vse of money ruines youth.


Argent receu le bras rompu: [Prov.] [He that payes for worke beforehand, lames his workeman; or, hath it but lamely done.]


[à rich homme n' en chaut qui ami luy soit:] [Prov.] The rich man needs no friends; or needs not care who he takes to friend; or (which is most ordinarie, and the most true) respecteth no mans friendship.
[`A riche homme n'en chaut qui ami luy soit:] [Pro.] [A rich carle no mans loue respects; or doth not care though no man loue him.]


[à rude asne rude asnier:] [Pro.] A stubborne seruant needs a froward master; a curst wife a curbing husband; a rebellious subiect a rigorous Soueraigne.


[`A rude chien dur lien:] [Prov.] [Curst vsage fits a churlish youth;] or, surlie humors must be repressed by soure vsage.
[`A rude chien dur lien:] [Prov.] [Violent humors must be stopped by hard curbs; churlish people awed with curst vsage.]


[Asne d'Arcadie broute chardons, & ortie, quoy que tout chargé d'or:] [Prov.] [Appliable to a rich, and most wretched penie-father; one that all the yeare long bestowes not a bit of good meat on himselfe.]


[Asseurement chante qui n'a que perdre:] [Pro.] [And who doth sing so merrie a note as he that cannot change a grote?]
[Asseurement chante qui n'a que perdre:] [Prov.] He boldly chaunts it that hath naught to loose; wee say; and who doth sing so merrie a note as he that cannot change a groat? {Ravenscroft reference?}


[Assez a qui bon credit a:] [Pro.] A good name is wealth sufficient.
[Assez a qui bon credit a:] [Prov.] A good name is a sufficient treasure.
[Assez a qui bon credit a:] [Prov.] A good report is a sufficient portion.


[Assez a qui se contente:] [Pro.] He hath ynough thats pleased.
[Assez a qui se contente:] [Prov.] Contentment is treasure ynough; nor needs he more thats pleased with what he hath.
[Assez a qui se contente:] [Prov.] We say, a contented mind is a great treasure; or, is worth all.


[Assez boit qui a dueil:] [Pro.] He drinks ynough that mournes; (yet we say, Sorrow is drie.)
[Assez boit qui a dueil:] [Pro.] Sorrow is dry, say we;
[Assez boit qui a dueil:] [Prov.] He hath drinke ynough that hath sorrow ynough;


[Assez consent qui ne dit mot:] [Pro.] He that gaine sayes not, giues his full consent; (of the same vessell is;) [Assez octroye qui mot ne dit.]
[Assez consent qui ne dit mot:] [Prov.] He consents enough that sayes nothing; [(Many, who know not much more Latine, can say, Qui tacet consentire videtur.)]


[Assez demande qui bien sert:] [Pro.] [A faithful seruant asks ynough; what his words do not aske, his worth doth.]
[Assez demande qui bien sert:] [Prov.] [Good seruice, of it selfe, demaunds reward.]


[Assez demande qui se plaind:] [Pro.] He that bemones his wants, hath begd sufficiently.
[Assez demande qui se plaind:] [Prov.] [Ynough demaunds he who of want complaines.]
[Assez demande qui se pleint:] [Pro.] He begs enough that playnes his wants.


[Assez dort qui rien ne fait:] [Pro.] As good sleepe altogether as doe nothing.
[Assez dort qui rien ne fait:] [Prov.] As good be fast asleep as idle awake.
[Assez dort qui rien ne fait:] [Prov.] As good one sleepe as be idle and doe nothing.


[Assez en dit qui apporte bonnes nouvelles:] [Prov.] He sayes ynough that sayes his newes are good; or, he that brings good newes loues to tell them often.
[Assez en dit qui apporte bonnes nouvelles:] [Prov.] [He spares no words that brings good newes.]
[Assez en dit qui apporte bonnes nouvelles:] [Prov.] He that hath told good newes, needs tell no more.


[Assez escorche qui tient le pied:] [Pro.] The Assistant is as guiltie as the Actor; the Accessarie as the Principall; he does mischiefe enough that helpes to doe mischiefe.
[Assez escorche qui tient le pied:] [Prov.] [He does ill ynough that helps to doe euill.]


[Assez faict qui s'en desfaict:] [Prov.] He does enough that rids himselfe of (a whore.)


[Assez fait qui fortune passe, & plus encor qui putain chasse:] [Prov.] He does much that ill fortune misses, but he does more that quits a whore.


[Assez gaigne qui malheur perd:] [Prov.] [He gaines ynough that misses a misfortune.]
[Assez gaigne qui malheur perd:] [Prov.] He gets ynough that balkes ill lucke; or, that looses nothing.
[Assez gaigne qui malheur perd:] [Prov.] He gets ynough that misses an ill turne.


[Assez ieune qui povrement vit:] [Pro.] [Enough he fasts that barely feeds.]
[Assez ieune qui povrement vit:] [Prov.] [He that liues poorely fasts sufficiently.]
[Assez ieusne qui pauvrement vit:] [Prov.] He that feeds barely fasts sufficiently.


[Assez parens assez tourmens:] [Prov.] [Many kinsmen much affliction.]
[Assez parens, assez tourmens:] [Prov.] [Many kinsmen much trouble;] [we say (with some difference)] [many kinsmen few friends.]
[Assez parens assez tourmens:] [Prov.] The more kinsmen the more afflictions.


[Assez peut pleurer qui n'a nul qui l'appaise:] [Pro.] He may weepe till his heart ake, that hath no bodie to appease him.
[Assez peut pleurer qui n'a nul qui l'appaise:] [Prov.] [He may weepe his eyes out that hath none to appease him.]


[Assez sç ait qui sç ait vivre, & se taire:] [Prov.] [Hee is cunning ynough that can liue and hold his peace (for he that knowes more knowes too much; and as good know nothing as know lesse.)]


[Assez va au moulin qui son asne y envoye:] [Pro.] [He that sends another, is as farre engaged as if he went himselfe.]
[Assez va au moulin qui son asne y envoye:] [Prov.] He may be said to doe a thing that sets his man about it.
[Assez va au moulin qui son asne y envoye:] [Prov.] He's guiltie ynough of an offence that appoints his man to commit it.


[Assez veille qui bien fait:] [Prov.] [He that does well, watches ynough.]


[Assez y a si trop n'y a:] [Prov.] [Enough there is where too much is not.]
[Assez y a si trop n'y a:] [Prov.] [Inough is as good as a feast; or, too much of any thing is good for nothing.]
[Assez y a si trop n'y a:] [Prov.] There is ynough where there is not too much; [(a difference betweene suffici encie, and superfluitie.]


[`A telle forme tel soulier:] [Pro.] [Like leauen like past; such as the shooe such is the last.]
[`A telle forme tel soulier:] [Prov.] [(Of a thing fitted, or fitly suited.)]


[`A telle paelle tel fourgon:] [Prov.] One filthie knaue matcht with another.
[`A telle paelle tel fourgon:] [Prov.] [One slouen matcht with another.]


[`A tel pertuis telle cheville:] [Prov.] [Said of any thing thats fitted, or suited in it kind.]


[`A toile ordie Dieu mande le fil:] [Prov.] [God furthers their indeauors that take paines.]
[`A toile ourdie Dieu mande le fil:] [Prov.] [God helps them forward that haue well begun;] or, begin to helpe they selfe, and God will helpe thee: some expound it otherwise of helpe sent (when the vse of it is past) when a businesse is dispatched.
[`A toile ourdie dieu mande le fil:] [Prov.] God works begun enables vs to follow.
[`A toile ourdie dieu mande le fil:] [Prov.] The worke thats well begunne God helpes to end; or, beginne thy worke, and God will helpe to end it.


[`A tous oiseaux leurs nids sont beaux:] [Pro.] [To euerie bird her neast seemes faire; most men like houses of their owne contriuing.]
[`A tous oiseaux leurs nids sont beaux:] [Prov.] [Euerie bird likes his owne neast; euerie man thinkes well of, or is in loue with, his owne house, & c.]


[`A tous seigneurs tous honneurs:] [Pro.] [Giue to all Lords all th'honours due vnto them.]


[`A tout il y a commencement; ou; il y a commencement par tout:] [Prov.] Euerie thing hath a beginning.


[`A tout perdre il n'y a qu'un coup perilleux:] [Pro.] [One right-set blow would serue to sinke vs all.]
[`A tout perdre n'y a qu'un coup perilleux:] [Prov.] One sound blow will serue to vndoe vs all.


[`A trompeur trompeur & demy:] [Prov.] [Applyable vnto a knaue, ouer-raught, or ouer-matched by a knaue.]


[`A trop acheter n'y a que revendre:] [Prov.] [There's nothing gotten by wares ouer-bought; nor does any man take much ioy in that, which to get hee tooke too much paines.]


[Au batre faut l'amour:] [Pro.] By beating (the beloued) loue decayes.
[Au batre faut l'amour:] [Prov.] [Much loue is lost by them that beat their loues.]


[Au bout la borne:] [Pro.] At length we shall resolue, or settle, vpon somewhat.
[Au bout la borne:] [Prov.] Th'end tryes all; at length we shall see what will be done.


[Au cerf la biere, au sanglier le barbier:] [Prov.] (For those beasts hard layed too, lay hard about them.
[Au cerf la biere, au sanglier le barbier:] [Prov.] (So dangerous a beast is an enraged stag.)
[Au cerf la biere, au sanglier le barbier:] [Prov.] [The Stag a coffin, Boare a Barber, needs; or, if thou beest hurt by a Stag prouide a coffin, if by a wild Boare a Chirurgian.]


[Au chair de loup sauce de chien:] [Prov.] [Wolues flesh must be eaten with dogs sauce.]


[Au chat cendreux iamais ne tombe rien en gueule:] [Prov.] An idle house-doue neuer gets preferment.
[Au chat cendreux jamais ne tombe rien en gueule: &, à regnard endormi rien ne chet en la gueule:] [Prov.] [Sluggish, or idle people neuer get any thing to purpose;] we say, of idlenesse comes no goodnesse.


[Au Chat cendreux jamais ne tombe rien en gueule:] [Prov.] The idle house-doue neuer getteth ought.


[Au chat lescheur bat on souvent la gueule:] [Prov.] [The lickorous cat comes vnto many a pat.]
[Au chat lescheur bat on souvent la gueule:] [Prov.] The lickorous cat hath many a rap.


[Au despendre gist le profit:] [Pro.] [In spending thrift consists; discreet expence makes many a poore man rich.]


[Au fol la marotte:] [Prov.] [The foole would haue a bable.]
[Au fol la marotte:] [Prov.] We say also, Giue the foole his bable; or, whats a foole without a bable?


[Au gibbet le repentir vient trop tard:] [Prov.] [Too late a man repents when the hangman attends him.]
[Au gibbet le repentir vient trop tard:] [Prov.] [Too late he repents that repents at the gallowes.]


[Auiourd'huy en siege, demain en piege:] [Prov.] [To day in pompe, to morrow in prison.]
[Aujourd'huy en siege, demain en piege:] [Prov.] [To day a captaine, to morrow a captiue.]


[Auiourd'huy roy demain de rien:] [Pro.] [Now a King ere long nothing.]
[Aujourd'huy roy demain rien:] [Prov.] [To day a King to morrow (as good as) nothing.]


[Auiourd'huy seigneur demain singe ord:] [Prov.] [To day a worthie Lord, to morrow an ape vntoward; viz. an absurd imitator of that which he was, or should be.]
[Aujourd'huy Seigneur, demain singe ord:] [Prov.] [To day a goodlie Lord, to morrow an ouglie lozell.]


[Aujourd'huy caissier demain cassé:] [Prov.] To day in cash, to morrow cassiered.
[Aujourd'uy caissier demain cassé:] [Prov.] To day in request, to morrow cassed.


[Aujourd'huy en chere demain en biere:] [Prov.] To day glad, to morrow dead.
[Aujourd'uy en chere, demain en biere:] [Pro.] To day a man, to morrow none; (say we.)


[Aujourd'huy en terre demain enterré:] [Pro.] [To day on the earth, to morrow in it.]


[Aujourd'huy Febvrier demain Chandelier:] [Prov.] (For Candlemas day is euer the second of Februarie.)


[Aujourd'huy marchant demain meschant:] [Prov.] [To day a Trader to morrow a Traytor.]
[Aujourd'uy marchant demain meschant:] [Pro.] [To day a Marchant, to morrow a miscreant.]


[Aujourd'huy monsieur demain Mouscheur:] [Pro.] [To day a Maister, to morrow Maisterlesse.]
[Aujourd'uy Monsieur demain mouscheur:] [Prov.] [To day a maister, to morrow a micher.]


[Aujourd'uy facteur demain fracteur:] [Prov.] To day a Banker, to morrow a bankrupt.


[Aujourd'uy marié demain marri:] [Prov.] [To day wifefull, to morrow wofull.]


[Au monde n'y a si grand dommage que de seigneur au fol courage:] [Prov.] [There is no beast like to a wicked Lord.]


[Au patient demeurent les terres:] [Prov.] [The iust shall inherit the land (sayes the Psalmist.)]


[Au pauvre vn oeuf vaut vn boeuf:] [Prov.] [An egge is as deere to a poore man, as an Oxe to a rich; or, a poore man is as well content with an egge as with an Oxe.]
[Au povre vn oeuf vaut vn boeuf:] [Prov.] [An egge's as much to a poore man as an Oxe.]


[Au plus debile la chandelle en la main:] [Prov.] (We say) he that worst may holds the candle.


[Au prester ange, au rendre Diable; &, Au prester cousin, au rendre fils de putain:] [Prov.] [Borrowers when they would haue coyne, speake faire, but when they should pay coyne, spit fire.]
[Au prester Ange, au rendre diable:] [Pro.] (Thus doe vngratefull men when they would borrow, flatter, when they must repay, rayle.)
[Au prester Ange, au rendre Diable:] [Prov.] [Some when they would borrow adore, but when they should pay abhorre, a man;] [The like is]; [Au prester cousin, au rendre fils de putain.]


[Au prester cousin, au rendre fils de putain:] [Prov.] Some, when they would borrow giue good wordes, but when they should repay, most bad ones.


[Au serviteur le morceau d'honneur:] [Pro.] [The last morsell in the dish is the seruants fee (some holding it but a rude part to leaue a dish emptie.)]


[Aussi bien sont amourettes soubs bureau que sous brunettes:] [Prov.] Loue playes his pranks as well in Cotes as Courts.
[Aussi bien sont amourettes sous bureau que sous brunettes:] [Prov.] Loue trickes are played (loues rites performed,) as well by poore as rich, folkes; (or) as well in poore as rich, clothes.


[Aussi tost meurt vache comme veau:] [Pro.] [The skipping Calfe, and wanton Lambe, are often kill'd before their damme.]
[Aussi tost meurt vache comme veau:] [Prov.] [As soone the young, as old, goes to the pot.]
[Aussi tost meurt veaut comme vache (& le hardi comme le lasche;)] [Pro.] [As soone dyes the yong as the old (the coward as the bold.)]


[Autant chemine vn homme en vn iour comme vn Limaç on en cent ans:] [Prov.] [A man goes as far in a day as a snaile in an age; some men can dispatch more businesse in one day than others in many.]
[Autant chemine vn homme en vn iour comme vn limaç on en cent ans:] [Prov.] [A quicke workeman dispatches as much in one day as a slowbacke in twentie.]


[Autant chie vn boeuf que mille moucherons:] [Pro.] As much dungs one oxe as a thousand flies; one rich man may spend more than many poore ones.


[Autant despend chiche que large:] [Prov.] [The miser matches the vnthrift in expence; (the one often wasting as much by allowing too scant, as the other by giuing too large, a proportion;) it may also be interpreted thus;] The liberall doth spend his pelfe, the pennyfather wasts himselfe.
[Autant despend chiche que large:] [Prov.] The wretch consumes as much as the great spender.


[Autant de testes autant d'opinions:] [Prov.] [As many men so many minds: The like is;] [Autant d'hommes autant de testes.]


[Autant pleure mal batu que bien batu:] [Pro.] [As much weepes he thats but sleightly, as he thats shrewdly, beaten; (whereunto agrees;)] [Mal batu longuement pleure:] [Prov.]


[Autant se prise beau varlet que belle fille:] [Prov.] A faire lad thinkes himselfe good ynough for any lasse, or thinkes as well of himselfe as any lasse; a Jack's at all times worthie of a Gill.
[Autant se prise beau varlet que belle fille:] [Prov.] [The smirking youth as much himselfe esteemes, as doth the Nimph who beautie fairest seemes.]


[Autant vaut aller à pied, que de cheuaucher vn baston maigre:] [Prov.] As good go a foot as ride on a leane iade.


[Autant vaut celuy qui chasse & rien ne prend, comme celuy qui lit & rien n'entend:] [Prov.] [Hee that hunts, and catches nought, is much like him that reads, and conceiues nought.]


[Au temps passé Berthe filoit:] [Prov.] In old time the greatest women were the greatest huswiues;


[Au vis le vice:] [Prov.] [Mans face often tells what vice in him dwells.]


[Aux bons meschet il:] [Pro.] [The best men (commonly) haue the worst fortune; whereupon we say, The honester man the worse his lucke.]
[Aux bons meschet il:] [Prov.] The honester man the worse lucke.


[Aux grands est deu grand honneur:] [Prov.] [Great reuerence is due vnto great persons.]


[Aux grands honneurs grands envieux:] [Prov.] [Enuie the companion of honour.]


[Aux Receveurs les honneurs, & aux femmes leurs douleurs:] [Prov.] Receiuers get preferment, foolish women paine; or [(as truly for the matter)] womens paine brings them honour, Receiuers honour breedes their paine.


[Avaller gros, & mascher dru:] [Prov.] (As we say,) to stumble at a straw, and leape ouer a blocke.


[Avarice fait petit monceau:] [Prov.] Small is the heap that auarice affoords (when wealth comes either to be displayed, or distributed.)


[Avarice rompt le sac:] [Prov.] [In striuing to take too much of a thing we spoyle it, and despoyle ourselues of all further vse of it.]
[Avarice rompt le sac:] [Prov.] [The miser coueting to make his bags hold ouermuch, breakes them, and looses the most of that they had in them.]


[Avec le temps, & la paille l'on meure les mesles:] [Pro.] [Time and straw doe make greene Medlers, which are as hard as stones, as soft as roasted apples: we must attend with hope times operation;] [The like is]; [Avec le temps l'on moissonne:] [Prov.] [In time our corne is ripe, our haruest gotten.]
[Avec le temps, & la paille l'on meure les mesles:] [Prov.] [In time, and straw are Medlers mellowed.]
[Avec le temps, & la paille lon meure les mesles:] [Prov.] [Time and affliction supple harshest natures.]


[`A vieille mule frein doré:] [Pro.] [Said in derision of an old woman, that paints and prankes her selfe.]


[`A vieux comptes nouvelles disputes:] [Pro.] Old accounts breed new disputations
[`A vieux comptes nouvelles disputes:] [Prov.] Old accompts breed new differences.


[à vilain charbonné e d'asne:] [Prov.] [A churle would haue churles fare, grosse meats, course entertainment.]


[`A vn bon chien n'escheut onques vn bon os:] [Pro.] [The honester a man is the lesse is his preferment; the worse his lucke.]


[`A vn chascun son fardeau poise:] [Prov.] Euerie one finds his owne burthen heauie enough.


[`A vn fol avantureux n'est mestier d'avoir sens:] [Prov.] [A foole that is aduenturous needes not to looke about him.]


[Avoine touillé e croist comme enragé e:] [Prov.] [In mirie ground Oats grow as if they were mad.]


[`A vray dire perd on le ieu:] [Prov.] [By speaking truth men (often) loose their game.]
[`A vray dire perd on le ieu:] [Prov.] [The fairest gamester alwayes looseth most: he that to Truth himselfe a prentise ties, will speed worse then the knaue that vseth lyes.]


Next letter: b

Return to French Proverbs from 1611