Proverb Question

Fred Shapiro fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Sun Nov 13 12:24:53 UTC 2005

On Thu, 10 Nov 2005, Baker, John wrote:

>         "The mutual dependence of merchants is so great, that their
> engagements like a chain, which, according to the Law of Physics is
> never stronger than its weakest link, are oftener broke through the
> weakness of others than their own."  Edwin Freedley, A Practical
> Treatise on Business 196 (1852 copyright, 1853 on title page) (via
> Making of America).

Thanks very much for this, but what I was looking for was pre-1861
evidence for the exact wording "a chain is no stronger than its weakest

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     

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