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Definition of Idiomatic Expressions


Meaning of nothing is certain but death and taxes


idioms

Meaning of idioms with examples...

nothing is certain but death and taxes

The phrase nothing is certain but death and taxes means that everything in life is uncertain. The only things that you can be sure of are:
1. You will undoubtedly die.
2. You will certainly have to pay taxes.

This saying comes from the letters of Benjamin Franklin where he states:
Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.
—Benjamin Franklin, in a letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, 1789


However, Franklin's letter is not the origin of the phrase; it appeared earlier in Daniel Defoe's The History of the Devil:
Things as certain as Death and Taxes, can be more firmly believ’d.
—Daniel Defoe The Political History of the Devil 1726.


But it should be noted that the origin of the phrase dates back to Daniel Defoe's The History of the Devil:

Things as certain as Death and Taxes, can be more firmly believ’d.
—Daniel Defoe The Political History of the Devil 1726.

Example(s):

Lacy: I can't believe how much tax money we have to pay for setting up this business.
Alice: You know, nothing is certain but death and taxes.

This idiom is in the death category


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