Careful Words

say (n.)

say (v.)

say (adv.)

say (adj.)

Shut, shut the door, good John! fatigued, I said;

Tie up the knocker! say I'm sick, I'm dead.

Alexander Pope (1688-1744): Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot. Prologue to the Satires. Line 1.

Though I say it that should not say it.

Beaumont And Fletcher: Wit at Several Weapons. Act ii. Sc. 2.

  We can say nothing but what hath been said. Our poets steal from Homer. . . . Our story-dressers do as much; he that comes last is commonly best.

Robert Burton (1576-1640): Anatomy of Melancholy. Democritus to the Reader.

  "And this," said Caesar, "you know, young man, is more disagreeable for me to say than to do."

Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Life of Caesar.

  First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.

Epictetus (Circa 60 a d): Concerning such as read and dispute ostentatiously. Chap. xxiii.

So well to know

Her own, that what she wills to do or say

Seems wisest, virtuousest, discreetest, best.

John Milton (1608-1674): Paradise Lost. Book viii. Line 548.