A Dollar Saved Is a Quarter Earned

Creator: John Ciardi, U.S. poet, translator, and critic

Context: For many years Ciardi was an editor and columnist at “The Saturday Review”. For the May 26, 1962 issue he composed a set of humorously altered versions of well-known adages. Here are three examples: 1

  • A dollar saved is a quarter earned.
  • A taxpayer and his money are soon parted.
  • Early to bed and early to rise probably indicates unskilled employment.

The original adages were:

  • A penny saved is a penny earned.
  • A fool and his money are soon parted.
  • Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.

The statement under examination suggests that economic inflation can reduce the value of a dollar to the equivalent of a quarter over time. This insight is particularly compelling when the inflation rate is high.

Acknowledgement: Thanks to Mardy Grothe who requested a citation for this quotation.

Image Notes: A picture of a quarter coin from the usmint.gov website. Also, a picture of several dollars from geralt at Pixabay.


  1. 1962 May 26, The Saturday Review, Manner of Speaking by John Ciardi, Start Page 19, Quote Page 19, Column 2, Saturday Review Inc., New York. (Unz)