- hope for the best and prepare for the worst
1565 NORTON & SACKVILLE Gorboduc I. ii. Good is I graunt of all to hope the best, But not to liue still dreadles of the worst.
1581 W. AVERELL Charles & Julia D7 To hope the best, and feare the worst, (loe, such is Loouers gaines).
1706 E. WARD Third Volume 337 This Maxim ought to be carest, Provide against the worst, and hope the best.
1813 J. JAY Correspondence (1893) IV. 367 To hope for the best and prepare for the worst, is a trite but a good maxim.
1836 E. HOWARD Rattlin the Reefer II. xxix. The youngest of us cannot always escape—hoping, trusting, relying on the best, we should be prepared for the worst.
1999 ‘H. CRANE’ Miss Seeton’s Finest Hour i. 7 ‘We must all hope for the best,’ Mrs. Seeton chided him gently. ‘As my nanny used to say: “Hope for the best, expect the worst—and take what comes.”’
Proverbs new dictionary.