The Danish thrift is the noun of the word thrive (to increase or prosper). Shakespeare says, “I have a mind presages me
such thrift” (increase, profit). As our frugal ancestors found saving the best way to grow rich, they applied the word to
frugality and careful management. A spendthrift is one who spends the
thrift or saving of his father, or, as Old Adam says, the “thrifty hire
I saved.” (As You Like It.)
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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