God in the deatils (1960); No names, no pack-drill (1930)

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Tue Jan 25 20:03:06 UTC 2005

On Tue, 25 Jan 2005, Jonathan Lighter wrote:

> The version with "devil" is so common that the "God" version becomes
> much more fascinating.

I always thought of the "god" version as the primary saying and the
"devil" one as a less common derivative, but a Google search shows 18,000
hits for "god" and 109,000 for "devil."  It may be that the currency of
"god is in the details" is mostly in architecture contexts whereas "devil
is in the details" has become a popular general proverb.  Seems like one
of those situations where there are two proverbs that are opposite in

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                             Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and     YALE DICTIONARY OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press,
Yale Law School                             forthcoming
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu               http://quotationdictionary.com

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