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Haste makes waste

Posted by ESC on July 12, 2003

In Reply to: Is there such a phrase as..... posted by Gary on July 12, 2003

: : having a bit of a disagreement with workmates over the phrase " less haste, more speed"(though it could be the other way around), my workmates say its "less speed, more haste" which to me doesn't make sense to want more haste, which means to rush a job,as opposed to speed which means to do a job fast!
: : surely a boss wouldn't want his workers to be hasty as opposed to speedy?
: : if anyone could clarify this phrase for me I would be grateful, there's a WHOLE £3 relying on this!!!!

: More haste: less speed. I.e. if you rush the job it will get finished later.

HASTE MAKES WASTE - "The notion of haste being counterproductive can be traced back at least to the apocryphal 'Book of Wisdom' (c. 190 B.C.) by Jesus Ben Sirach, which contained the line, 'There is one that toileth and laboureth, and maketh haste, and is so much the more behind.' Centuries later, Chaucer wrote in 'Canterbury Tales' (c. 1387), 'In wikked haste is not profit.'.A longer version of the saying was quoted in John Ray's 'A Collection of English Proverbs' : 'Haste makes waste, and waste makes want, and want makes strife between the goodman and his wife.'.an amusing counterpart in a Chinese proverb on the futility of hurrying - 'A hasty man drinks his tea with a fork.'." From "Wise Words and Wives' Tales: The Origins, Meanings and Time-Honored Wisdom of Proverbs and Folk Sayings Olde and New" by Stuart Flexner and Doris Flexner (Avon Books, New York, 1993).