25 Quotes An Alarming Amount of People Get Wrong

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Everyone uses quotes. Things your favorite actor or athlete said, or words of wisdom from long-dead philosophers. However, some quotes turn into a game of telephone, and by the time they get to the newest ear, it's been twisted beyond recognition.

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1. “Money Is the Root of All Evil”

Who Said It First: The Bible, Timothy 6:10

What It Really Says: “For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

2. “Be The Change You Wish to See in the World”

Who Said It First: Mahatma Gandhi

What It Really Says: “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.”

3. “The Lion Shall Lay Down With the Lamb”

Who Said It First: The Bible, Isaiah 11:16

What It Really Says: “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.”

4. “Beam Me Up, Scotty!”

Who Said It First: Star Trek Characters

What It Really Says: It was never actually spoken in the original Star Trek series.

5. “Mirror Mirror, On the Wall, Who's The Fairest of Them All?”

Who Said It First: The Evil Queen in “Snow White”

What It Really Says: “Magic mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?”

6. “That's One Small Step for Man, One Giant Leap for Mankind”

Who Said It First: Neil Armstrong

What It Really Says: “That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.”

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7. “Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned”

Who Said It First: William Congreve

What It Really Says: “Heav’n has no rage like love to hatred turn’d Nor Hell a fury, like a woman scorn’d.”

8. “I Cannot Tell a Lie”

Who Said It First: George Washington

What It Really Says: George Washington never actually said this.

9. “The Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins With a Single Step”

Who Said It First: Lao Tzu

What It Really Says: “A journey of a thousand li [a Chinese mile] starts beneath one's feet” This quote is also attributed to Confucius.

10. “Go Confidently in the Direction of Your Dreams! Live the Life You've Imagined”

Who Said It First: Henry David Thoreau

What It Really Says: “[I]f one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”

11. “Let Them Eat Cake!”

Who Said It First: Marie Antoinette

What It Really Says: Marie Antoinette never said this.

12. “Luke, I Am Your Father”

Who Said It First: Darth Vader

What It Really Says: “No, I am your father.”

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13. “Anything That Can Go Wrong, Will”

Who Said It First: Edward Murphy

What It Really Says: “If there's more than one way to do a job, and one of those ways will result in disaster, then he will do it that way.” (According to Murphy's son, Robert)

14. “Curiosity Killed the Cat”

Who Said It First: Ben Johnson

What It Really Says: “Helter skelter, hang sorrow, care’ll kill a Cat, up-tails all, and a Louse for the Hangman.”

15. “Rome Wasn't Built in a Day”

Who Said It First: French Poet (Unknown)

What It Really Says: “Rome wasn’t built in a day, but it was burned in one.”

16. “The Proof Is in the Pudding”

Who Said It First: Unknown

What It Really Says: “The proof of the pudding is in the eating.”

17. “Me Tarzan, You Jane”

Who Said It First: Tarzan

What It Really Says: Tarzan never said this.

18. “A Rose By Any Other Name Smells Just As Sweet”

Who Said It First: Juliet, Romeo and Juliet

What It Really Says: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, By any other word would smell as sweet.”

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19. “I Disapprove of What You Say, But I Will Defend to the Death Your Right to Say It”

Who Said It First: Voltaire

What It Really Says: Voltaire never said this.

20. “Elementary, My Dear Watson”

Who Said It First: Sherlock Holmes

What It Really Says: Holmes never said this.

21. “Be Yourself. Everyone Else Is Already Taken”

Who Said It First: Oscar Wilde

What It Really Says: Wilde never said this.

22. “The Ends Justify the Means”

Who Said It First: Machiavelli 

What It Really Says: “In judging policies we should consider the results that have been achieved through them rather than the means by which they have been executed.”

23. “There's No Rest for the Wicked”

Who Said It First: The Bible, Isaiah 48:22

What It Really Says: “There is no peace, saith the Lord, unto the wicked.”

24. “Nice Guys Finish Last”

Who Said It First: Leo Durocher

What It Really Says: “Take a look at them. They’re all nice guys, but they’ll finish last. Nice guys. Finish last.”

25. “Well-Behaved Women Rarely Make History”

Who Said It First: Marilyn Monroe

What It Really Says: This quote was misattributed to Marilyn Monroe.

This article was produced and syndicated by Money Life Wax.

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