haste makes waste

Idioms & Phrases

haste makes waste

Proceeding too quickly can spoil an enterprise, as in Stop trying to rush through three things at oncehaste makes waste, you know. This rhyming warning, first recorded in this exact form in 1575, was in John Ray's 1678 proverb collection, where the full text was: "Haste makes waste, and waste makes want, and want makes strife between the goodman and his wife."

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