Definition of a Proverb: Microsoft Encarta 99 Encyclopedia. 1993-1998 provide an extended definition:- Proverb, a concise statement, in general use, expressing commonly held beliefs and received ideas.Most proverbs are rooted in folklore and have been preserved by oral tradition. An example of such commonplace wisdom is "A rolling stone gathers no moss". Often the same accepted truths are found in proverbs from different cultures and languages worldwide. The Bible has provided a large number of proverbs, for example, "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth", which has an African equivalent in "A goat's hide buys a goat hide, and a gourd, a gourd". Graham Paris (UK) writes "My Cornish grandmother, had a quaint expression, "Hark at the pot calling the brandy smutty". This is a more Cornish way of referring to a pot calling the kettle black. A brandy is the iron stand that was used to put pots on to cook in an open fire." Some proverbs have literary origins, as in the case of the adaptation by Benjamin Franklin of Aesop's proverb "The gods help them that help themselves". Others may have derived from popular usage, such as "Money is the root of all evil" from the biblical saying "The love of money is the root of all evil" or from superstitions, such as "Marry in May, repent always", or weather lore, such as "Rain before seven, fine before eleven". Obsolete customs have also generated proverbs, such as "If the cap fits, wear it", referring to the medieval fool's cap.
A friend's frown is better than a fool's smile.
A friend in need is a friend indeed.
A friend is easier lost than found.
A friend to everybody is a friend to nobody.
A problem shared is a problem halved.
A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand, but touches your heart.
False friends are worse than open enemies.
Flattery is all right so long as you don't inhale.
Give credit where credit is due.
Grief divided is made lighter.
Memory is the treasure of the mind.
Nothing dries sooner than a tear.
Old friends and old wine are best.
The best of friends must part.
There is no better looking-glass than an old friend.
To err is human (To forgive divine).
Two cannot fall out if one does not choose.
A loveless life is a living death.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
All's fair in love and war.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Before you meet the handsome prince you have to kiss a lot of toads.
Cold hands, warm heart.
Distance makes the heart grow fonder.
Faint heart never won fair lady.
First impressions are the most lasting.
Hatred is as blind as love.
Love and a cough cannot be hid.
Love does much but money does all.
Love levels all inequalities.
Love makes a good eye squint.
Love sees no faults.
Love sought is good, but given unsought is better.
We previously stated that there were no new proverbs being created, but here are some that appear to be modern.
Absence makes the fond heart wander.
Change is inevitable, except from vending machines.
Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
You snooze, you loose.
Modern adaptations of old proverbs
A supporter has forwarded this list which are puns on old proverbs. You will recognize the original proverbs with their modern technology terms. They do not qualify as true proverbs but are included here for a laugh.
A burden in the bush is worth two in the hand.
A journey of a thousand sites begins with a single click.
C:\ is the root of all directories.
Don't byte off more than you can view.
Fax is stranger than fiction.
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; Teach him to use the Net and he won't bother you for weeks.
Great groups from little icons grow.
Home is where you hang your @.
Modulation in all things.
Oh, what a tangled web site we weave when first we practice.
Pentium wise, pen and paper foolish.
Speak softly and carry a cellular phone.
The e-mail of the species is more deadly than the mail.