Wednesday, October 1, 2008

This is an expression that is normally used to caution someone. When you say that one swallow does not make a summer, what you mean is that just because something good has happened, it doesn't mean good things will continue to happen. Chances are things may go bad, instead of improving. You are requesting the individual to err on the side of caution, and not to carried away.

Just because you've won the first round doesn't mean you are going to win the championship. Remember one swallow does not make a summer.

The expression comes from the world of Aesop's Fairy tales. In the story, a young man sees a swallow on a warm winter day. As you know, a swallow is a bird which usually appears in the spring. Thinking that the winter season is over, the young man sells off his woollen coat, and with the money he has made, he goes to the bar and drinks. unfortunately, in the days that follow, the temperature drops. The young man, shivering in the cold realises that one swallow does not make a summer.

Article idea: The Hindu dated on September 30, 2008


Tree said...

There seems a lot of misunderstanding about this proverb when it is translated into Chinese. And, your explanation is very useful

Anonymous said...

It originally came from Aristotle's Ethics...not Aesop. In Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, " For one swallow does not make a spring, nor does one day; nor, similarly, does one day or a short time make us blessed and happy."