The Proverbs Of John Heywood "Rome Was Not Built In A Day"

John Heywood

"Rome Was Not Built In A Day"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: The author is telling about a young couple who married in haste against the wishes of their aunts and uncles. He is quoting every proverb he can think of to prove his point that those who marry early usually have a long time in which to repent. In the story, the young husband is telling about returning to the home of his aunt and uncle and being coolly received. The uncle tells him that he is just like his parents; they too married for love when they did not have a penny to live on. Finally, exasperated, the uncle turns the young fellow out. Filled with dismay, he stalks away, being comforted by an old friend, who reassures him that everything will come out right in the long run. "After clouds black," he says, "we shall have weather clear," and, "All this wind shakes no corn!" The young husband responds in the widespread proverb:

I thank you, (quoth I), but great boast and small roast
Maketh unsavoury mouths, wherever men host.
And this boast very unfavourly serveth;
For while the grass groweth the horse sterveth;
Better one bird in hand than ten in the wood.
Rome was not build in one day, (quoth he), and yet stood
Till it was finished, as some say, full fair.