Antedating Proverb "once bit twice shy" (1806) "singed" (1837)

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu Dec 17 04:58:05 UTC 2009

> Thanks very much for this, Garson.
> OED3 does have an entry for this, s.v. _once_, with the
> earliest example in the full form from 1849, but it does list
> a 1751 quotation that only has the "once bit" part (actually
> "I have been bit once, and have made a vow never to settle
> upon any woman while I live, again").
> Jesse Sheidlower

Many thanks for your response. The already remarkable OED keeps
getting better, and I will check it for proverbs using full-text
search in the future. The 1751 cite is superb.

The American Dialect Society -

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