Reference > Quotations > Robert Christy, comp. > Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages
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Robert Christy, comp.  Proverbs, Maxims and Phrases of All Ages.  1887.
 
Fortune, Luck
 
A drop of fortune is worth a cask of wisdom.  Latin.  1
A fortunate boor needs but be born.  2
A fortunate man may be anywhere.  3
A handful of luck is better than a sackful of wisdom.  German.  4
A little will serve a fortunate man.  5
A lucky man is rarer than a white crow.  Juvenal.  6
A man does not seek his luck, luck seeks its man.  Turkish.  7
A man of parts may lie hid all his life unless fortune calls him out.  8
A stout heart crushes ill luck.  Spanish.  9
All are not born to lie on the lap and drink milk.  Hans Andersen.  10
All bad fortune is to be conquered by endurance.  Virgil.  11
All brings grist to your mill.  12
As fortune is sought so it is found.  German.  13
Bad luck, bad credit.  German.  14
Bad luck often brings good luck.  15
Be not arrogant when fortune smiles, nor dejected when she frowns.  Ausonius.  16
Better luck next time.  17
Born of a white hen. (Said of a lucky fellow.)  Latin.  18
Call me not fool till Heaven has sent me fortune.  Shakespeare.  19
Every man is arrogant or humble according to his fortune.  20
Every one is dissatisfied with his own fortune.  Cicero.  21
Everything he touches turns into gold.  (An allusion to Midas, king of Phrygia.)  22
Everything may be borne except good fortune.  Italian.  23
For him who is lucky even the cock lays eggs.  Modern Greek.  24
Fortune aids the bold.  Spanish.  25
Fortune always leaves some door open in disasters whereby to come at a remedy.  Don Quixote.  26
Fortune and go to sleep.  Italian.  27
Fortune and misfortune are neighbors.  German.  28
Fortune and misfortune are two buckets in a well.  German.  29
Fortune can take away riches but not courage.  Seneca.  30
Fortune can take from us only what she has given us.  French.  31
Fortune changes not birth.  Horace.  32
Fortune comes to her who seeks her.  Italian.  33
Fortune does not stand waiting at any one’s door.  Dutch.  34
Fortune dreads the brave and is only terrible to the coward.  Seneca.  35
Fortune favors fools.  36
Fortune favors the brave.  Latin.  37
Fortune gives her hand to a brave man.  38
Fortune gives many too much, but no one enough.  Laberias.  39
Fortune has no power over discretion.  Solon.  40
Fortune has rarely condescended to be the companion of genius.  Isaac Disraeli.  41
Fortune has wings.  German.  42
Fortune helps that help themselves.  43
Fortune helps the bold, but not always.  German.  44
Fortune is a woman: if you neglect her to-day, expect not to regain her to-morrow.  French.  45
Fortune is blind.  German.  46
Fortune is gentle to the lowly, and Heaven strikes the lowly with a light hand.  Seneca.  47
Fortune is like glass: she breaks when she is brightest.  Latin.  48
Fortune is like the market, where if you will bide your time the price will fall.  49
Fortune is like women: loves youth and is fickle.  German.  50
 
 
Fortune is not content to do a man but one ill turn.  Publius Syrus.  51
Fortune is not far from the brave man’s head.  Turkish.  52
Fortune is round; it makes one a king, another a beggar.  Dutch.  53
Fortune is the companion of virtue.  Latin.  54
Fortune is the guardian of the stupid.  German.  55
Fortune knocks once at least at every man’s door.  56
Fortune lost, nothing lost; courage lost, much lost; honor lost, more lost; soul lost, all lost.  Dutch.  57
Fortune makes a fool of him she too much favors.  Latin.  58
Fortune makes friends, and misfortune tries them.  German.  59
Fortune makes kings and fools.  German.  60
Fortune makes kings out of beggars, and beggars out of kings.  German.  61
Fortune makes rich and poor.  German.  62
Fortune often knocks at the door, but the fool does not invite her in.  Danish.  63
Fortune often lends her smiles as churls do money, to undo the debtor.  64
Fortune often rewards with interest those that have patience to wait for her.  65
Fortune rarely brings good or evil singly.  66
Fortune seldom comes alone.  67
Fortune smiles upon the brave and frowns upon the coward.  Latin.  68
Fortune sometimes favors those she afterwards destroys.  Italian.  69
Fortune wearies with carrying one and the same man always.  70
Fortunes of thousands, thousands ten, cannot be made but by able men.  Chinese.  71
Fortune unaided prevails over the plans of one hundred learned men.  Plautus.  72
Fortune when she caresses a man too much makes him a fool.  Latin.  73
From twelve eggs he gets thirteen chickens.  German.  74
Give a man luck and throw him in the sea.  75
God send you luck, my son, and little wit will serve your turn.  76
Good conduct overcomes ill fortune.  Charles of Anjou.  77
Good fortune ever fights on the side of prudence.  Greek.  78
Good fortune comes to her who takes care of her.  79
Good fortune gives courage.  Hans Andersen.  80
Good luck comes by cuffing.  81
Good luck lies in odd numbers.  Shakespeare.  82
Good luck reaches farther than long arms.  83
Half an ounce of luck is better than a pound of sense.  German.  84
He dances well to whom fortune pipes.  85
He extracts milk even from a barren goat.  Greek.  86
He is lucky who forgets what cannot be mended.  German.  87
He needs little advice that is lucky.  88
He planted pebbles and took potatoes.  Greek.  89
He was born with a caul.  French.  90
He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth.  91
He who hath no ill fortune is clogged with good.  92
He who is meant to be a basket carrier is born with the handle in his hand.  Italian.  93
His bread fell into the honey.  Spanish.  94
His bread is buttered on both sides.  95
His hens lay eggs with two yolks.  German.  96
If fortune favor you, be not elated; if she frown, do not despond.  Ausonius.  97
If he fling a penny on the roof, a dollar would come down to him.  98
If it is to be luck the bull may as well calve as the cow.  Danish.  99
If you are too fortunate you will not know yourself.
If you are too unfortunate nobody will know you.
  100
It is better to be born lucky than rich.  101
It is easier to win good luck than to retain it.  Latin.  102
It is not every man who is the son of Gaika. (Gaika was a very rich man among the South Africans.)  African.  103
Low fortunes only break low minds.  Massinger.  104
Luck comes to those who look after it.  Spanish.  105
Luck does not remain standing before one’s door.  German.  106
Luck for fools, and chance for the ugly.  107
Luck follows the hopeful, ill luck the fearful.  German.  108
Luck gives many too much, but no one enough.  German.  109
Luck has but a slender anchorage.  Danish.  110
Luck has much for many, but enough for no one.  Danish.  111
Luck is all.  112
Luck is better than a hundred marks.  Danish.  113
Luck is everything in promotion.  Don Quixote.  114
Luck is for the few, death for the many.  German.  115
Luck meets the foot but he seizes it not.  German.  116
Luck offers his hand to the bold.  German.  117
Luck perhaps visits the fool but does not sit down by him.  German.  118
Luck seeks those who flee and flees those who seek it.  German.  119
Luck stops at the door and inquires whether prudence is within.  Danish.  120
Luck will carry a man across the brook if he is not too lazy to leap.  Danish.  121
Lucky men need no counsel.  122
Men are seldom blessed with good fortune and good sense at the same time.  Livy.  123
More luck than wit.  Dutch.  124
No hour brings good fortune to a man, without bringing misfortune to another.  Publius Syrus.  125
No man has perpetual good fortune.  Plautus.  126
No man knoweth fortune till he dies.  Dutch.  127
One man gets an estate by what another man gets a halter.  Fielding.  128
One man is born to the money and another to the purse.  Danish.  129
Pitch him into the Nile and he will come up with a fish in his mouth.  Arabian.  130
That is a very wretched fortune which has no enemy.  Publius Syrus.  131
The bird of prosperity has lodged on his head.  Turkish.  132
The goddess of fortune dwells in the feet of the industrious.
The goddess of misfortune dwells in the feet of the sluggard.  Tamil.
  133
The heathen’s fortune is the Christian’s providence.  134
The highest spoke in fortune’s wheel may soon turn lowest.  135
The lucky man has a daughter for his first-born.  Portuguese, Spanish.  136
The most friendly fortune trips up your heels.  French.  137
The most wretched fortune is safe, for there is no fear of anything worse.  Ovid.  138
The wheel of fortune turns quicker than a mill wheel.  Don Quixote.  139
The worse luck, the better another time.  140
The worse service, the better luck.  Dutch.  141
There is no fence against fortune.  142
There is no one luckier than he who thinks himself so.  German.  143
There lies no appeal from the decisions of fortune.  144
They who strive with fortune win or weary her at last.  Byron.  145
To a bold man fortune holds out her hand.  French.  146
To have luck needs little wit.  Italian.  147
To the bold man fortune gives her hand.  Spanish, Portuguese.  148
Too poor for a bribe and too proud to importune,
He hath not the method of making a fortune.  Gray on his own character.
  149
Whatever fortune has raised to a height, she has raised only to cast it down.  Seneca.  150
When fortune favors a man too much she makes him a fool.  Publius Syrus.  151
When fortune fawneth she biteth, when she is angry she woundeth.  152
When fortune knocks, open the door.  Italian, German.  153
When fortune means to men most good,
She looks upon them with a threatening eye.  Shakespeare.
  154
When fortune reaches out her hand one must seize it.  German.  155
When fortune opens one door she opens another.  German.  156
When fortune smiles, take advantage.  157
When smiling fortune spreads her golden ray,
All crowd around to flatter and obey.
But when she thunders from the angry sky,
Our friends, our flatterers, our lovers fly.  Ovid.
  158
Where luck is wanting, diligence is useless.  Spanish.  159
Who changes country changes luck.  Italian.  160
Who changes his condition changes fortune.  Italian.  161
Who has luck needs no understanding.  German.  162
Who has luck plays well with bad cards.  German.  163
Who has luck warms himself without fire and grinds without wind or water.  German.  164
Whom fortune favors the world favors.  German.  165
Will fortune never come with both hands full?  Shakespeare.  166
You must have good luck to catch hares with a drum.  Danish.  167
 
 
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