All’s well that ends well

All’s well that ends well is a very old proverb. A proverb is a short, common saying or phrase. These common sayings are language tools that particularly give advice or share a universal truth, or impart wisdom. Synonyms for proverb include adage, aphorism, sayings, and byword, which can also be someone or something that is the best example of a group. Often, a proverb is so familiar that a speaker will only quote half of it, relying on the listener to supply the ending of the written or spoken proverb himself. Speakers of English as a second language are sometimes confused by these pithy sayings as translations from English to other languages do not carry the impact that the English phrases carry. Some common proverbs are the wise sayings better late than never, early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise, an apple a day keeps the doctor away, haste makes waste, blood is thicker than water, and a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. One of the books of the Bible is the Book of Proverbs, which contains words and phrases that are still often quoted in the English language because they are wise. Many current proverbs are quotations taken from literature, particularly Shakespeare, as well as the Bible and other sacred writings. We will examine the meaning of the expression all’s well that ends well, where it came from, and some examples of its use in sentences.

All’s well that ends well means a successful pursuit is worth the adversity and obstacles one must overcome to achieve success. The expression also implies that regardless of the problems involved in a pursuit, success was achieved. The proverb all’s well that ends well is most well known because it is a title of a Shakespeare play, published in 1623. However, the axiom was known and used for hundreds of years before that time. It was published as early as the 13th century in an English poem, The Proverbs of Hendyng.


All’s well that ends well: Austin scores three in a hitless inning to survive an upset bid (The Austin Daily Herald)

All’s Well That Ends Well is a fitting title for a Shakespearian play, but it also is a fit description of the city council meeting held in Hillsboro on Tuesday, July 14. (The Journal-News)

While this was good news for the protesters and the First Amendment alike, it is not an “all’s well that ends well” situation, either. (The Louisville Eccentric Observer Weekly)

All’s well that ends well, but it really doesn’t look like it’s going to end well for oil at all at this rate… (The Hellenic Shipping News)

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