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Nothing comes of nothing proverbial saying, late 14th century; the saying is found earlier in Greek, in the work of the Greek lyric poet Alcaeus (c. 620–c. 580bc).

nothing for nothing proverbial saying, early 18th century, summarizing the attitude that nothing will be offered unless a return is assured.

nothing is certain but death and taxes proverbial saying, early 18th century, summarizing what in life is inevitable and inescapable.

nothing is certain but the unforeseen proverbial saying, late 19th century, a similar thought to the unexpected always happens.

nothing is for ever no state or condition is permanent; saying recorded from the late 20th century.

nothing should be done in haste but gripping a flea proverbial saying, mid 17th century, used as a warning against rash action.

nothing so bad but it might have been worse proverbial saying, late 19th century, used in resignation or consolation; a more positive version is found earlier in Sir Walter Scott's Rob Roy (1817), ‘There's naething sae gude on this side o' time but it might hae been better.’

nothing so bold as a blind mare Scottish proverbial saying, early 17th century, meaning that those who know least about a situation are least likely to be deterred by it.

nothing succeeds like success proverbial saying, mid 19th century, meaning that someone already regarded as successful is likely to attract more support.

nothing venture, nothing gain proverbial saying, early 17th century, a later variant of nothing venture, nothing have.

nothing venture, nothing have proverbial saying, late 14th century, meaning that one must be prepared to take some risks to achieve a desired end. An earlier version of nothing venture, nothing gain.

there is nothing new under the sun proverbial saying, late 16th century; with biblical allusion to Ecclesiastes 1:9, ‘There is no new thing under the sun’.

there is nothing so good for the inside of a man as the outside of a horse proverbial saying, early 20th century, recommending the healthful effects of horse-riding.

you ain't seen nothing yet there is something even more extreme or impressive in store. Often with allusion to Al Jolson's ‘you ain't heard nuttin' yet,’ used as an aside in the 1927 film The Jazz Singer.

See also blessed is he who expects nothing, double or nothing, have nothing to lose, neck or nothing, something is better than nothing.


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