fools build houses and wise men live in them
- The terser form of this saying—fools build and wise men buy—can be applied to property other than houses (see quot. 1997).
1670 J. RAY English Proverbs 91 Fools build houses, and wise men buy them.
1721 J. KELLY Scottish Proverbs 110 Fools [build] big Houses and wise Men buy them. I knew a Gentleman buy 2000 l. worth of Land, build a House upon it, and sell both House and Land to pay the Expences of his building.
1875 A. B. CHEALES Proverbial Folk-Lore 43 Fools build houses, and wise men live in them is another proverb on this subject; it is partly true.
1911 W. F. BUTLER Autobiography xix. The adage says that fools build houses for other men to live in. Certainly the men who build the big house of Empire for England usually get the attic..for their own lodgment.
1934 J. ALEXANDER Murder at Eclipse III. ii. 86 On his retirement, the first baron did not build himself a palace such as he could well have afforded. Perhaps he remembered the old adage that ‘fools build and wise men buy.’
1997 Country Life 14 Aug. 28 Arthur Ransome, self-mocking, said of boating folk: ‘Fools build and wise men buy.’ There is a similar put-down of people who breed their own horses.
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wise — see it is easy to be wise after the event it is a wise child that knows its own father early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise a fool may give a wise man counsel fools ask questions that wise men cannot answer … Proverbs new dictionary
build — see fools build houses and wise men live in them where God builds a church, the devil will build a chapel it is easier to pull down than to build up Rome was not built in a day … Proverbs new dictionary
Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs, Thematic Index — absence absence makes the heart grow fonder he who is absent is always in the wrong the best of friends must part blue are the hills that are far away distance lends enchantment to the view out of sight, out of mind … Proverbs new dictionary
fool — see a fool and his money are soon parted a fool at forty is a fool indeed there’s no fool like an old fool a fool may give a wise man counsel children and fools tell the truth fortune favours fools … Proverbs new dictionary
folly — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) Lack of good sense Nouns 1. folly, silliness, foolishness, inanity, idiocy; frivolity, ineptitude; giddiness; inattention; irrationality, eccentricity (see insanity); extravagance, nonsense, absurdity;… … English dictionary for students
house — see when house and land are gone and spent, then learning is most excellent a house divided cannot stand better one house spoiled than two an Englishman’s house is his castle fools build houses and wise men live in them … Proverbs new dictionary
Narr — (s. ⇨ Geck). 1. A Narr hot a schöne Welt. (Jüd. deutsch. Warschau.) Dem Dummen erscheint die Welt um so schöner, als er von manchen ihrer Uebel und Leiden nicht berührt wird. 2. A Narr hot lieb Süss. (Jüd. deutsch. Warschau.) Diese auch in… … Deutsches Sprichwörter-Lexikon
biblical literature — Introduction four bodies of written works: the Old Testament writings according to the Hebrew canon; intertestamental works, including the Old Testament Apocrypha; the New Testament writings; and the New Testament Apocrypha. The Old… … Universalium
Germany — /jerr meuh nee/, n. a republic in central Europe: after World War II divided into four zones, British, French, U.S., and Soviet, and in 1949 into East Germany and West Germany; East and West Germany were reunited in 1990. 84,068,216; 137,852 sq.… … Universalium
literature — /lit euhr euh cheuhr, choor , li treuh /, n. 1. writings in which expression and form, in connection with ideas of permanent and universal interest, are characteristic or essential features, as poetry, novels, history, biography, and essays. 2.… … Universalium