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Frank J. Wilstach, comp. A Dictionary of Similes. 1916.

Josh Billings

Advice is like kissing: it costs nothing and is a pleasant thing to do.

Ambition is like hunger; it obeys no law but its appetite.

Avarice is like a graveyard; it takes all that it can get and gives nothing back.

Clear as the challenge ov a perlice officer.

Cool as a dog’s nose in a wire muzzle.

Courting iz like strawberries and cream, wants tew be did slow, then you get the flavor.

Courting iz like 2 little springs ov soft water that steal out from under a rock at the fut ov a mountain and run down the hill side by side singing and dansing and spattering each uther, eddying and frothing and kaskading, now hiding under bank, now full ov sun and now full ov shadder, till bimeby tha jine and then tha go slow.

Credit is like chastity; they can both stand temptation better than suspicion.

Debt is like any other trap, easy enough to get into, but hard enough to get out of.

I kant consieve a more despikable objek than a proud and arrogant man; he makes me think ov an old Tom Turkey Trieing tew git mad at a red flannel pettycoat on a clothes line.

An echo is like a woman, always determined to have the last word.

Fame is like a crop of kanada thissels, very eazy tew sow, but hard tew reap.

Flattery is like Kolone water, tew be smelt of, not swallowed.

Thare iz just this difference between a fule and a hen, the fule cackels before, the hen not till after the egg iz lade.

I gazed a gaze, az tho i wuz triing tu thread the rong end ov a kambrik needle.

Men ov genius are like eagles, tha live on what tha kill, while men ov talents are like crows, tha live on what haz bin killed for them.

Early genius, like early cabbage, does not head well.

Genuine grief is like penitence, not clamorous, but subdued.

Habits are like the wrinkles on a man’s brow; if you will smooth out the one, I will smooth out the other.

Happy az a dinner-bell.

Health is like munny, we never hav a true idea ov its value until we lose it.

Higher than the price ov gold.

Honesty iz like a 7 per cent. interest; it will beat all kind of speckerlashuns in the long run.

Innocent as 2 merino lambs.

Knowledge is like money,—the more a man gets, the more he craves.

Laziness is a good deal like money—the more a man has of it, the more he seems to want.

As like him as flakes ov snow.

Limber az a lover.

Luv is like the measles, one kant alwus tell when one ketched it and ain’t ap tew hav it severe but onst, and then it ain’t kounted much unless it strikes inly.

Munny is like promises, easier maid than kept.

Misterious as an echo.

Natral as the bee tow the flower.

Opportunitays, like eggs, don’t kum but one at a time.

Pensiv as a wel fed kitten.

Perlite as a dancing master.

Poor as wood.

Ginowine proverbs ar like good kambrick needles—short, sharp, and shiny.

Proverbs are like arrows; they fly not only fast but straight.

Pure as the breth of a white male infant.

Pure az the utterances ov angells.

Robbers are like rane, tha fall on the just and the unjust.

Saif tu take as a fotograph.

Shines like a newly lit flame.

Still as a crow’s nest, in the ded ov winter.

Time is like money; the less we have of it to spare, the further we make it go.

Trembles like the luv-smitten harte ov a damsell.

Twists like a whiskee phit.

True valor is like honesty; it enters into all that a man sees and does.

A witty writer is like a porcupine; his quill makes no distinction between friend and foe.