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[sey-ing] /ˈseɪ ɪŋ/
something said, especially a proverb or apothegm.
go without saying, to be completely self-evident; be understood:
It goes without saying that you are welcome to visit us at any time.
Origin of saying
1250-1300; Middle English (gerund); see say1, -ing1
1. maxim, adage, saw, aphorism. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for sayings
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  • I have a little book which I have kept of her sayings and doings, which may interest you, Monsieur.

    The Crossing Winston Churchill
  • This will become plain, if we take the Greek sayings or myths about Endymion and Selênê.

    Moon Lore Timothy Harley
  • They recognize one another's voices, and they interpret one another's thoughts, and they adopt one another's sayings.

  • No language, perhaps, is richer in sayings than the Finnish.

    Through Finland in Carts Ethel Brilliana Alec-Tweedie
  • In these a man's acts or sayings are confirmed by natural events coinciding with them in a remarkable manner.

    The Truth of Christianity William Harry Turton
British Dictionary definitions for sayings


a maxim, adage, or proverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for sayings



"utterance, recitation, action of the verb 'say,' " c.1300, verbal noun from say (v.); meaning "something that has been said" (usually by someone thought important) is from c.1300; sense of "a proverb" is first attested mid-15c.

Ça va sans dire, a familiar French locution, whose English equivalent might be "that is a matter of course," or "that may be taken for granted." But recently it has become the tendency to translate it literally, "that goes without saying," and these words, though originally uncouth and almost unmeaning to the unpractised ear, are gradually acquiring the exact meaning of the French. [Walsh, 1892]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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