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The meaning and origin of the expression: He will give the Devil his due

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He will give the Devil his due

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Meaning

Literally, pay the devil what you owe him. Used figuratively to mean 'give back what you owe', either money or favours.

Origin

Cobbe family portrait of William ShakespeareFrom Shakespeare's Henry IV Part 1, 1597:

Constable: I will cap that proverb with 'There is flattery in friendship.'
Orleans: And I will take up that with 'Give the devil his due.'

See other phrases and sayings from Shakespeare.