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A proverb or precept was a saying commonly sourced from folklore, historical allusion, tribal memories, or religion. (TNG: "The Naked Now")

The Ferengi Rules of Acquisition were written as the sacred precepts upon which all Ferengi society was based. (DS9: "Body Parts")


"A child born from parents who love each other will have nothing but goodness in his heart."
"A doctor who operates on himself has a petaQ for a patient."
"A good lie is easier to believe than the truth."
"A hundred thousand welcomes."
"A man who's always looking over his shoulder is waiting for trouble to find him."
"A stranger is a friend you just haven't met yet."
"Absence makes the heart grow fonder"
"All good things (must come to an end)"
"Beware Romulans bearing gifts."
"Blood is thicker than water."
"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" / "Truth is in the eye of the beholder" / "Treason is in the eye of the beholder"
"Confession is good for the soul."
"Discretion [is] the better part of valor."
"(Don't look a) gift horse in the mouth."
"Enemies make dangerous friends."
"Even the eagle must know when to sleep."
"Every cloud has a silver lining."
"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."
"Fortune favors the bold."
"Four thousand throats may be cut in one night by a running man with a knife."
"Good news has no clothes."
"Good things come in small packages."
"Good things come to those who wait."
"He who studies evil is studied by evil."
"Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned."
This saying is derived from the play The Mourning Bride (1703) by William Congreve: "Heav'n has no rage, like love to hatred turn'd,/Nor hell a fury, like a woman scorn'd."
"His bark is worse than his bite."
"Home is wherever you happen to be."
"If [the] shoe fits, wear it."
"If you're not fighting them, you're helping them."
"In accepting the inevitable, one finds peace."
"It never rains but it pours." (Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan)
"It's lonely at the top."
"Little birds in their nest get along."
This would seem to be a 24th century variation on "Birds in their little nests agree."
"Live long and prosper."
"May you live in interesting times."
"My course is as elusive as a shadow across the sky."
"No good deed goes unpunished."
The origin of this saying (on Earth) is uncertain but versions of it date back to the 14th century.[1] "No good deed ever goes unpunished" is the 285th Ferengi Rule of Acquisition. (DS9: "The Collaborator", "The Sound of Her Voice")
"Nothing ventured, nothing gained."
"Never ask when you can take."
"No Changeling has ever harmed another."
"Once a thief."
  • A saying quoted by Kira, described as "an old saying". ("...always a thief" is implied.)
  • (DS9: "Resurrection")
"One man can summon the future."
"One man cannot summon the future."
"One man's priceless is another man's worthless."
"One man's villain is another man's hero."
"Only a fool fights in a burning house."

A quote spoken by Kang. (TOS: "Day of the Dove")

"Only Nixon could go to China."
"Out of harm's way."
"Own the day."
"Out of the mouths of babes."
"Patience is for the dead."
"Power corrupts. And absolute power corrupts absolutely."
From a letter by John Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton (1834-1902).
"Put the shoe on the right foot first, but put the left foot first into the bathtub."
"Revenge is a dish that is best served cold."
The real world etymology of the proverb is unclear, but the first known verified variant thereof had already turned up in the French early-1840s six-volume novel Mathilde by Eugène Sue, which read "Et puis la vengeance se mange très-bien froide, comme on dit vulgairement" (Oeuvres complètes, Vol. 3, p. 53, 1841 [2]), or "And then revenge is very good eaten cold, as the vulgar say", according to the 1846 two-volume translation in English as The Orphan; Or, Memoirs of Matilda ([3]; ISBN 9781145991941 – 2010 facsimile reprint), which incidentally also constituted the first known verified usage of the proverb in English. Since Sue had italicized the "se mange très-bien froide" part – faithfully adhered to in the 1846 English translation (p. 303) – , this implied that an older colloquial version had existed previously. [4] As exactly phrased by Khan though, actually appears to have been first used as such in the 1982 Star Trek film. [5]
"Sauce for the goose (is sauce for the gander)"
"Scared Kelpien makes for tough Kelpien."
"Seize the day!"
"Spare the rod and spoil the child."
"The angels themselves take pleasure in their bodies of light."
"The customer's always right."
"The devil finds work for idle hands."
"The dream dreams the dreamer."
"The drop becomes the ocean... The ocean becomes the drop..."
"The early bird gets the worm."
"The enemy of my enemy is my friend."
It is unclear which prince Spock meant, and the origins of the proverb are currently unknown in real life. More information can be found here.
A version of this phrase was additionally said by Elim Garak in the first draft script of DS9: "When It Rains...", when he realized that Kira Nerys intended to help Damar's Cardassian Liberation Front fight against the Breen-Dominion Alliance. Garak specifically stated, "My enemy's enemy is my friend, that sort of thing."
The phrase was also cited in the first draft script of ENT: "Shadows of P'Jem" (written while that episode had the working title "Untitled Andorians Return"). It was said by Malcolm Reed to sum up how Andorian commander Shran believed a civil war on Coridan, in which a corrupt Coridanite government was being backed by the Vulcans, with whom the Andorians had a very conflicted history, would escalate into a full-blown war between the Vulcans and Andorians. In reply to Reed using the phrase, Shran admitted, "Something like that."
"The land and the people are one."
"The proof is in the pudding."
"The road to hell is paved with good intentions."
"The way to a woman's heart is through her stomach."
"The whole is greater than the sum of its parts."
"There's a warm wind blowing in from Minicoy."
"There's no time like the past."
"There's no time like the present."
"To each his own"
"To become a thing is to know a thing. To assume its form is to begin to understand its existence."
"Today is a good day to die." / "Chech chew jaj-Vam jaj-kak!"
"Two heads are better than one."
"Waste not, want not."
"When in Fellebia, do as the Fellebians do."
"When in Rome, we'll do as the Romans do."
This was the only instance the entire saying was completely spoken.
"When in the Collective, adapt."
"When the cat's away (the mice will play)"
"When the road before you splits in two, take the third path."
"Wouldn't hurt a fly."
"You cannot loosen a man's tongue with root beer."
"You don't kick a man when he's down." (ENT

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