difficult is done at once, the impossible takes a little longer, the

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Proverbial saying, late 19th century; in the first recorded usage, Trollope's novel Phineas Redux (1873), the words are attributed to ‘a French Minister’, the French statesman Charles Alexandre de Calonne (1734–1842), who is said to have responded, ‘Madame, si c'est possible, c'est fait; impossible? cela se fera [Madam, if a thing is possible, consider it done; the impossible? that will be done].’ In modern times, the US Armed Forces have taken as their slogan, ‘The difficult we do immediately, the impossible takes a little longer.’

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