The More the Merrier

It is a saying we have all heard, for most of our lives. It is the more the merrier. The expression was first recorded in 1530, when it was put as “The more the merrier; the fewer, the better fare” (meaning “with fewer there would be more to eat”), an observation that made its way into numerous proverb collections. This saying was made a part of pop culture when it was made into a movie. The More the Merrier is a 1943 American comedy film made by Columbia Pictures which makes fun of the housing shortage during World War II, especially in Washington, D.C..

To me this saying has always meant that the more people you have to share your life with, the merrier all will be. There is strength in numbers as we are more together than we ever could be alone. And isn’t this true? While I do have a close inner circle, I am blessed with many friends, from all over, who have shared and continue to share many pieces of my life. There is nothing quite like having a warm place to share with friends. Nothing like being able to offer a hot meal, a warm bed, cold beer and lots of laughter. And this time as the holidays draw near, I am reminded of all those aroound with whom to share the merriment. And they have lightened the load during the recent times of distress. Yes, another thing is true – friends multiply the good and divide the bad in half.

There are holiday parties, Thanksgiving lunches, playing catch up as those come through Atlanta, neighbors stopping in and much more. Talking of life, the ups and downs, sharing in good news, supporting in the bad, and much, much more. And as more friends come into town this weekend, and even more next weekend, I am reminded again of how blessed and lucky I am to have these wonderful people in my life.
As Thanksgiving approaches, I see and am thankful for them, their merry laughter, their willingness to share, to keep my heart in a safe place, to trust me with their love and friendship as well. So raise your glass with me and toast – the more the merrier!

The mo [more] the myryer, so God me blesse.
[c 1380 Pearl (1953) l. 850]

The mo the merier, we all daie here [hear] and se. Ye but the fewer the better fare (saied he).
[1546 J. Heywood Dialogue of Proverbs ii. vii. I3]

The company is‥all the Patriarchs, Prophets, Saints. ‥The more the mirrier, yea, and the better cheare to.
[1614 T. Adams Devil’s Banquet iv. 196]

The old proverb comes true—‘the more the merrier: but the fewer the better fare.’
[1855 C. Kingsley Westward Ho! III. iv.]

‘Take my word for it. Have another baby.’‥‘The more, the merrier!’
[1976 L. Alther Kinflicks xiii.]

A third rope was tossed through the hole. ‘Clip that on, too!’ yelled out Uncle Stoppard. Why not? The more the merrier.
[2001 M. Dahl Viking Claw vii. 56]


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