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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

Page 12

John Heywood. (1497?–1580?) (continued)
    I perfectly feele even at my fingers end. 1
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. vi.
    A sleveless errand. 2
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. vii.
    We both be at our wittes end. 3
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. viii.
    Reckeners without their host must recken twice.
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. viii.
    A day after the faire. 4
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. viii.
    Cut my cote after my cloth. 5
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. viii.
    The neer to the church, the further from God. 6
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. ix.
    Now for good lucke, cast an old shooe after me.
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. ix.
    Better is to bow then breake. 7
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. ix.
    It hurteth not the toung to give faire words. 8
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. ix.
    Two heads are better then one.
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. ix.
    A short horse is soone currid. 9
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. x.
    To tell tales out of schoole.
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. x.
    To hold with the hare and run with the hound. 10
          Proverbes. Part i. Chap. x.
Note 1.
Francis Rabelais: book iv. chap. liv. At my fingers’ ends.—William Shakespeare: Twelfth Night, act i. sc. 3. [back]
Note 2.
The origin of the word “sleveless,” in the sense of unprofitable, has defied the most careful research. It is frequently found allied to other substantives. Bishop Hall speaks of the “sleveless tale of transubstantiation,” and Milton writes of a “sleveless reason.” Chaucer uses it in the Testament of Love.—Sharman. [back]
Note 3.
At their wit’s end.—Psalm cvii. 27. [back]
Note 4.
Thomas Heywood: If you know not me, etc., 1605. Tarlton: Jests, 1611. [back]
Note 5.
A relic of the Sumptuary Laws. One of the earliest instances occurs, 1530, in the interlude of Godly Queene Hester. [back]
Note 6.
Qui est près de l’église est souvent loin de Dieu (He who is near the Church is often far from God).—Les Proverbes Communs. Circa 1500. [back]
Note 7.
Rather to bowe than breke is profitable;
Humylite is a thing commendable.
The Morale Proverbs of Cristyne; translated from the French (1390) by Earl Rivers, and printed by Caxton in 1478. [back]
Note 8.
Fair words never hurt the tongue.—Ben Jonson, George Chapman, Marston, Eastward Ho, act iv. sc. 1. [back]
Note 9.
Fletcher: Valentinian, act ii. sc. 1. [back]
Note 10.
Humphrey Robert: Complaint for Reformation, 1572. John Lyly: Euphues, 1579 (Arber’s reprint), p. 107. [back]