all that glitters is not gold

Idioms & Phrases

all that glitters is not gold

Something attractive is not always what it seems, as in This house is really beautiful, but a close look will show dry rot near the foundationall that glitters is not gold. Aesop stated the same idea in two of his fables (c. 600 b.c.), and a version close to the current wording appeared in 1175.

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