I noticed that these tags are very similar and effectively have the same meaning.

I searched in two search engines define proverb and define saying, here are the results:


a short pithy saying in general use, stating a general truth or piece of advice.
a short, pithy expression that generally contains advice or wisdom.


a short, well-known pithy saying, stating a general truth or piece of advice.
a short, pithy, commonly known expression which generally offers advice or wisdom.

Going by these obvious similarities, shouldn't they be merged?

If they are to be merged, which should be a synonym of the other?
'Saying' is slightly more popular than 'proverb' (Google Ngrams) but proverb sounds more academic.

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I suggest proverb and saying are quite different both in meaning and use. A proverb is typically advice or an old expression of a common truth. If a new phrase were coined, such as "Make America Great" I would suggest it would not be labelled a proverb but a saying. A saying is a current phrase or short statement in popular use that typically has a meaning beyond that strictly associated with each discreet word. A saying may see a change in the underlying meaning predicated on use and application. A proverb is usually less mutable as its meaning is captured in respected or accepted texts with an associated explaination.

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You're probably right that and are probably the same thing and so should be synonymized and merged.

Then again, so too is which I bet is my fault although I haven't looked.

Those should all be in the plural, and there should be one tag to rule them all, one tag to find them.

At the point it’s probably best I not mention gnome, adage, epigram, aphorism, apothegm, apophthegm, sententia, nor paroemia.

Nor shall I drift into expression, platitude, bromide, refrain, byword, witticism, quip, catchphrase, maxim, mantra, truism, axiom, homily, precept, brocard, dictum, tenet, motto, slogan, jingle, saw, chestnut, cliché, banality, or parable.

Nor tweet.

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  • Well, perhaps we need an organised tag clean-up. Should we try a site-wide clean-up effort? – BladorthinTheGrey Nov 6 '16 at 16:05

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