The silver lining September 29, 2008Posted by Giselle in Réflexions diverses.
Tags: avon books, charles dickens, cloud, image, john milton, meaning, origin, phineas, phrase, proverb, reason, saying, silver lining
“Every cloud has a silver lining…”
Have you wondered what this popular saying means? Well, the sentence itself gives us an idea to its meaning. It basically means that you should never feel hopeless because unfortunate times always lead to good times. Every difficult situation has a bright side to it. Something good always comes out of something that we think may have been bad for us. Believe me! It is true. Like they say.. Everything happens for a reason.
Difficult times are like dark clouds that pass overhead and block the sun. When we look more closely at the edges of every cloud we can see the sun shining there like a silver lining.
The origins of this proverb:
John Milton’s masque (dramatic entertainment) ‘Comus’ (1634) gave rise to the current proverb with the lines, ‘Was I deceiv’d, or did a sable cloud/ Turn forth her silver lining on the night?’
Charles Dickens, in his novel ‘Bleak House’ (1852), recalled the lines with ‘I turn my silver lining outward like Milton’s cloud,’.
The American impresario Phineas T. Barnum first recorded the wording of the modern saying in ‘Struggles and Triumphs’ (1869) with ‘Every cloud,’ says the proverb, ‘has a silver lining.'”
–> Taken from “Wise Words and Wives’ Tales: The Origins, Meanings and Time-Honored Wisdom of Proverbs and Folk Sayings Olde and New” by Stuart Flexner and Doris Flexner (Avon Books, New York, 1993).