death and taxes, certain as

Idioms & Phrases

death and taxes, certain as

Also, sure as death and taxes. Bound to occur, inevitable, as in His business is going to fail, certain as death and taxes. This phrase was invented by Benjamin Franklin in a letter (1789) and has been repeated ever since, the government's recurring need for revenue probably assuring its continued popularity.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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