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life is too short

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Do not waste time on unimportant matters or unworthy emotions, such as anger or anxiety. For example, I could get my revenge by snubbing Tom, but life's too short, or Don't spend all day waiting for his call—life is too short. This phrase, possibly echoing the ancient Latin proverb, Ars longa, vita brevis (“Art is long-lasting, life is short”), is often used to dismiss an unimportant or unworthy concern. [Mid-1800s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

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