[PW] ? Earliest Use of "Live Long and Prosper" (Quotation Query #740)

Bill Davis wmadavis at gmail.com
Tue Feb 16 13:00:03 PST 2016

I had this query and responses back in 2005:

From: Bill Davis :
Subject:  Live Long and Prosper

I was reading a wedding announcement from an 1888 Kentucky newspaper which
ended with this sentence:

          "In the language of Snyder, "May they live long and prosper."  "

I had no idea that the expression was being used before "Star Trek."   I
did some internet searches for the expression and found examples from
Indiana in 1874, California in 1876, Arkansas in 1885, Minnesota in 1900,
and Nebraska in 1921.    But none of the others cited a "Snyder."  And I
found nothing in the Stumpers Archives.

Who was Snyder and where did he (or she) use expression?

Bill Davis


Reply by Alison Hendon:

At 04:00 PM 11/14/2005, you wrote:
>I know this phrase from "Rip Van Winkle", a play by Joseph Jefferson from
>probably the 1850-1860s.  It seems quite likely that Snyder was a character
>in the play since it was set in the Catskills with lots of Dutch names.  I
>don't have the play though - can anyone verify this?
>Alison M. Hendon
>Youth Selection Team Leader
>Brooklyn Public Library
>a.hendon at brooklynpubliclibrary.org
>(718) 230-2744


Reply by Lynne Welch:

>Date:         Mon, 14 Nov 2005 16:44:49 -0500
>From:         Lynne Welch <welchly at oplin.org>
>According to
>Schneider (Snider) was his dog ~ see p. 29, Note 18
>But on p.6 of
>Rip says to Vedder "But, I stops now, l drinks no more; if anybody ask me
>to drink, I'll say to dem -- here is your go-to-hell, and your family's
>go-to-hell, and may you all live long and prosper."
>Lynne Welch - Reference Librarian
>Herrick Memorial Library - Wellington OH 44090
>tel. 440-647-2120       fax 440-647-2103
>email <welchly at oplin.org>
>website: <wellington.lib.oh.us>


At 01:17 PM 2/16/2016, you wrote:
>The Star Trek Vulcan blessing, "Live long and prosper," has been 
>around for a while on earth, I believe.  Can anyone help me discover 
>the earliest findable occurrence of this phrase?
>Fred Shapiro
>Project Wombat - Project-wombat
>list at project-wombat.org

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