Why do we say "Make hay while the sun shines.

Well-Known Expressions

Make hay while the sun shines

Meaning:

Take full advantage of an opportunity before it passes

Background:

This expression, which alludes to the drying of grass for animal feed, is first recorded in English in Alexander Barclay's Ship of Fools

Ship of Fools, originally written by the distinguished humanist Sebastian Brant in 1494 and published in German as Narrenschiff, satirizes examples of contemporary folly.  It was one of the most successful published works of its age and is often cited as one of the first "international bestsellers". Alexander Barclay adapted it into English as The Ship of Folys of the Worlde in 1509.  The work's comic woodcuts, commonly attributed to Albrecht Dürer of Nuremberg, are a key part of its popularity.  Sample illustrations can be seen at the University of Glasgow's website. The full text and illustrations are available at Project Gutenberg.

Alphabetical list of expressions

Challenge yourself with BookBrowse Wordplays

One Month Free Membership

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
    by Bryn Greenwood

    A memorable coming-of-age tale about loyalty, defiance, and the power of love.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko
    by Scott Stambach

    "An auspicious, gut-wrenching, wonderful debut." - Kirkus, starred review

    Read Member Reviews

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
This Must Be the Place
by Maggie O'Farrell

An irresistible love story for fans of Beautiful Ruins and Where'd You Go, Bernadette?

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Lady Cop Makes Trouble

The Kopp Sisters Return!

One of the nation's first female deputy sheriffs returns in another gripping adventure based on fact.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

Manners M (T) M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!



Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.