30 Money Quotes from Poor Richard’s Almanack

Poor Richard’s Almanack was a yearly Almanack published by Benjamin Franklin from 1732 – 1758. The publication included information on seasonal weather, planting schedules, lunar cycles, and more. Poor Richard’s Almanack is most famous for its insightful little quotes and wordplays.

I became interested in reading Poor Richards’s Almanack after hearing Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett’s partner and Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, talk about all the wisdom it contained. Munger has been a student of Benjamin Franklin’s writings for a long time, and Munger attributes some of his success to what he has learned from the simple quotes in Poor Richard’s Almanack.

Here are 30 of my favorite quotes from Poor Richard’s Almanack:

“Speak little do much”

“Light purse, heavy heart”

“Necessity never made a good bargain”

“If you’d know the value of money, go and borrow some”

“Beware of little expenses: a small leak will sink a great ship”

“Drive thy Business, or it will drive thee”

“If you know how to spend less than you get, you have the philosopher’s stone”

“As Pride increases, Fortune declines”

“Little Strokes Fell great Oaks”

“Content makes poor men rich, Discontent makes Rich men poor”

“Avoid dishonest gain: no price can recompense the pangs of vice”

“No gains without pains”

“Great spenders are bad lenders”

“Light Gains, heavy Purses”

“He that drinks fast, pays slow”

“He that waits upon fortune, is never sure of a dinner”

“Haste makes waste”

“Diligence is the mother of good luck”

“Patience in market, is worth pounds in a year”

“Don’t judge a men’s wealth or piety, by their Sunday appearances”

“Spare and have is better than spend and crave”

“A Plowman on his legs is higher than a gentleman on his knees”

“Work as if you were to live 100 years, Pray as if you were to die tomorrow”

“Having been poor is no shame, but being ashamed of it, is”

“If you have no honey in your pot, have some in your mouth”

“Lost time is never found again”

“Well done is better than well said”

“After crosses and losses, men grow humbler and wiser”

“If Passion drives, let reason hold the reins”

“Wise men learn by others’ harms, fools by their own”

I hope you enjoyed the quotes. You probably recognized a few of them as the origin of some of today’s popular quotes. I highly recommend studying Benjamin Franklin if you ever get the chance, as he is one of America’s most brilliant thinkers. PBS has a great documentary on Benjamin Franklin which you can find on Netflix — or possibly at your local library.