“Lo bueno, si es breve, dos veces bueno” (Something good, if it's short, two times good)
There are few times when we get to know who is the real author of a popular saying and this is one of them. The saying that you have just read is eloquent and there isn't really that much to say about it. On the face of it, it says that even something good in excess is bad or it ends up boring you.
The author of this saying is a writer from 17th century Aragon called Baltasar Gracián and is well known by most since he is a regular in Spanish literature classes. In his work there dominate short and simple aphorisms, many times with various meanings, with underlying philosophical or moral messages. You could almost say that Gracián was a walking book of proverbs.
Like most proverbs, this one has a lesser-known second part. The saying "something good, if short, two times good" ends with "and something bad, if it's only a little, it's not so bad." In other words, something good in excess can be bad but something bad, in small doses, can be beneficial. Who hasn’t been bored to death when paired with a witty person for a few hours? Who hasn’t learned anything from spending a few minutes with an obnoxious person?
This is a great proverb that we owe to a scholar with a wit and wisdom that we may never come across again. We'll keep you informed.
Other popular Spanish Sayings
- A la fuerza ahorcan
- De noche todos los gatos son pardos
- Lo bueno, si es breve, dos veces bueno
- "Ya que la casa se quema, calentémonos en ella"
- "The house of the soap-maker is a slippery place"
- "Santo era Pedro y negó a su maestro"
- "Aprendiz de todo, maestro de nada"
- "En Carnaval todo pasa, hasta los novios a las casas"