if the mountain won't come to Muhammad

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

An ellipsis (anapodoton) of "If the mountain won't come to Muhammad then Muhammad must go to the mountain.", coined by Francis Bacon, perhaps from a Turkish proverb.

Proverb[edit]

if the mountain won't come to Muhammad

  1. If one cannot get one's own way, one must bow to the inevitable.

Translations[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bacon, Francis, Essays, Chapter 12 (available online.)
  2. ^ Ray, John A collection of English proverbs digested into a convenient method for the speedy finding any one upon occasion: with short annotations: whereunto are added local proverbs with their explications, old proverbial rhythmes, less known or exotick proverbial sentences, and Scottish proverbs (1670).
  3. ^ Random House Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings (1996), Gregory Y. Titelman (Random House, New York, 1996).