- The Irish are known for their “gift of the gab”. Judging by the preponderance of old Irish proverbs and sayings regarding the dangers of idle chatter, the Irish must love to gossip.
The clothesline chronicles are not unique to the Irish race. The Bible has many verses devoted to the perils of spreading tales. Proverbs from many cultures advise against the rumor mill, but today let’s focus on guidance from the land of the Blarney Stone.
Here are some wise old words from my Irish ancestors on the risks of a “good old chinwag”.
“He who comes with a story to you, brings two away from you.”
“Who keeps his tongue, keeps his friends.”
“It is not a secret if it is known by three people.”
“Who gossips with you, will gossip of you.”
“She has a tongue that would clip a hedge.”
“Melodious is the closed mouth.”
“Silence is the fence around the haggard,
where wisdom is stacked.”
“Prayers and idle chatter don’t mix.”
“Dead men tell no tales,
but there is many a thing learned in the wake house.”
“If you dig a grave for others,
you may fall into it yourself.”
“Don’t bless with the tip of your tongue,
if there’s bile at the butt.”
“The things most people want to know about,
are usually none of their business.”
– George Bernard Shaw
“There is only one thing in the world worse
than being talked about,
and that is not being talked about.”
– Oscar Wilde
“It is perfectly monstrous the way people go about nowadays
saying things against one, behind one’s back,
that are absolutely and entirely true.”
– Oscar Wilde
No more gossip for today.
Slán agus beannacht,
(Goodbye and blessings)
Irish American Mom