Meaning of “A Fool and His Money Are Soon Parted”
The phrase or an idiom means that a fool cannot keep his money safe. He will be on the spending spree as soon as he gets anything. In other words, a thoughtless person always wastes his money in one or the other thing. The proverb has been modified and twisted various times to suit the circumstances and contexts in which it is used.
Origin of “A Fool and His Money Are Soon Parted”
The first speculation about the origin of this proverb is assumed to be taken from The Bible. The book of Proverbs 21:20 of King James Bible is the origin of this phrase as it contains the same meaning. The verse is as follows – “There is treasure to be desired and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man spendeth it up.”
This proverb might also have been coined by Thomas Tusser in 1573 when he used almost similar words in his book Five Hundreth Pointes of Good Husbandrie. The following sentence is an example of the phrase with different wording, “A foole and his money be soone at debate: which after with sorrow repents him too late.”
Another use has been found in the Defence of the Government of the Church of England, 1587 by Dr. John Bridge. He is stated to have used the proverb in its exact wording such as “A foole and his money is soone parted.”
Examples from Literature
Losing Control by Jay Ferguson
A fool and his money
Are very soon to be parted
And the last thing he tells you
Is “I’m only getting started”
He’s at the table winning
Everybody foolish grinning
It’s so easy
This poem by Jay Ferguson shows how a fool wastes a fortune and boasts to people that he has just started spending his money. He also hints that he has a lot more money than he is spending. When he is with the other people, he throws extravagant parties to win their praise. Other people see him a foolish, grinning at his generosity toward them. The more he sees this, the more he loses control over his purse and spends without worrying for the future. In the end, he loses control and all his money. The use of this proverb in the first two verses of this poem shows its veracity.
Average Joe by Ronald Sexsmith
“Lord, a fool and his money parted ways
To a con artist at the bus depot
Oh now who would’ve thought such an honest face
Would make a monkey of this average Joe?
I’m a walking disaster
I’m an accident waiting to happen
I can’t walk any faster, no
If I could I’d be tap dancing, yeah.”
Ronald Eldon Sexsmith wrote this song. This is the second stanza of the song where the poet asks God why was a person such a fool and lost the money to a person who appeared honest. Referring to himself as average Joe, and he trusted a person based on their appearance. He realizes that it was a mistake and he also confesses that he was aware of his foolishness. The use of this proverb in the first line gives an understanding about a people who trust cheaters.
A Fool and His Money by Ann Wroe
Written by Ann Wroe, the novel, A Fool and His Money, explores a town of fourteenth-century divided between France and England. A merchant, Peyre Marques loses his gold and calls for the masons for investigation of the building to find it. This beautiful town with two parts negotiating its space with both countries becomes a good setting. The story of Peyre Marques runs parallel to the city and its government, heartlessness of the people and the discovery of the gold, its real finder as well as the reward that the finder is going to get. The story goes according to the title that “a fool and his money are soon parted.”
A Fool and His Money by John Rothchild
John Rothchild, a journalist, wrote this book about his life. The experiences include selling a used car and then going to banks and financial experts to learn to invest money in big ventures. He also visits stock exchange and brokers and tries to learn to make profits. Following this, he attends training classes with stockbrokers and writes short tips for himself as well as for his readers. In fact, this is a self-help book for investors that teaches how not to be a fool and keep your money safe.
Example in Sentences
Example #1: This proverb could be used as a metaphor for a person such as “Leave her honey! She will soon be pauper, for a fool and his money are soon parted.” It shows that if she is smart, she would use her money wisely or else she will waste it.
Example #2: ‘A fool and his money are parted’ is like a story that is told to a fool, and again, it is left to him to learn a lesson. Here the proverb has been used as a simile as it has been compared to a story.
Example #3: “Do not spend too much here, or you will spend the entire amount, and people will say that a fool and his money are soon parted.” The proverb has been used as a metaphor as it has termed the person a fool.
Example #4: “His situation is like a fool and his money which are parted soon.” It shows that the proverb has been used as a simile as it has been compared to the situation in which the person is. Also, the sentence has shown that the writers have the choice to change the wording to suit the context.
Example #5: “A fool and his money are soon parted shows that a fool cannot keep precious things safe.” This sentence is an explanation of the proverb. It shows that a fool cannot keep things and spends whenever he comes across the money.