Speak of the Devil!
One of my favorite sayings is
God is in the details.
It makes me think of patient medieval manuscript illuminators who might spend days on the meticulous execution of one initial letter. Their work was a form of prayer. Every detail deserved the utmost attention because the work was being offered to the glory of God.
Nowadays the expression has morphed into
the Devil is in the details
The necessity of paying close attention to details is still the focus of the saying, but now the admonition warns against ignoring details for fear of law suits or time delays.
A FEW OTHER “DEVIL” EXPRESSIONS
between the devil and the deep blue sea – trapped in a difficult situation with no easy way out. (between a rock and a hard place)
there’ll be the devil to pay – there will be severe consequences
devilled eggs – hard-cooked eggs in which the yolks have been flavored with hot spices; devilled – grilled with hot condiments (also spelled deviled)
devil’s food cake – a rich moist, airy layer cake made with cocoa. Probably named to contrast it with angel food cake, which is white and fluffy.
devil-may-care attitude – a wildly reckless attitude that laughs at caution
a devil of a question – a question that has no easy answer, or, perhaps, a question considered impertinent by the person being asked it.
dust devil – sand spout or dust storm
printer’s devil – a printer’s apprentice
devilry, deviltry, devilment – all words referring to devilish behavior, either in the sense of wicked behavior or of roguery.
speak of the devil – nowadays this expression is used when one has been speaking of a person just before the person arrives. Or perhaps one has been speaking of rain just before a downpour. Full-length versions of the proverb: Speak of the devil and he will appear; Speak of the devil and he’ll be at your elbow. The expression originated with the belief that one should not mention the devil’s name for fear of attracting his attention.
Devil’s advocate – from Latin. advocatus diaboli, one whose job it is to urge against the canonization of a candidate for sainthood.
little devil – little rascal; playful use for “clever rogue”
devilish behavior – wicked behavior
OTHER NAMES FOR THE DEVIL
The Lord of Darkness
The Lord of the Flies
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