I am reading "The Richest Man in Babylon" but could not get the meaning of the following sentences:

Provide also that thy family may not want should the Gods call thee to their realms. For such protection it is always possible to make provision with small payment at regular intervals. Therefore the provident man delays not in expectation of a large sum becoming available for such a wise purpose.

Anyone please rephrase them so I can understand them easily. Thank you

  • 7
    It means buy life insurance. – Dan Bron Mar 9 '17 at 4:22
  • Brilliant, Dan. Brilliant! – Robbie Goodwin Mar 9 '17 at 4:35
  • 1
    Substitute go wanting (i.e., be in need) for want. Does it make more sense now? – deadrat Mar 9 '17 at 5:01
  • @DanBron Or a piggy bank. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Mar 9 '17 at 5:19
  • 1
    @DanBron You don't pay your piggy bank? How cruel of you—that's cruelty to animals and slavery all in once! – Janus Bahs Jacquet Mar 9 '17 at 5:24

Here's a paraphrase:

(I'm assuming this occurs within a list or chapter on provisions since it begins with the words "provide also")

Also, make sure to provide for your family in case of your death so that they do not lack what they need. You can do this by putting aside small amounts of money on a regular basis (presumably either by saving or by purchasing insurance).

[Therefore, a good provider can count on having a decent/large sum of money available without delay in case of need.] -- for a better paraphrase of this bit see the comment below by Janus. I think they are more accurate than I am on this part.

edited for accuracy

  • Your last sentence does not say the same as the one in the quote. The quote admonished that a wise man should not wait for a huge windfall to set anything aside for future safeguarding, but does it straight away with whatever he can spare. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Mar 9 '17 at 5:18
  • You're right -- I had another read. – Murgatroyd Mayne Mar 9 '17 at 5:33
  • 1
    "the provident man" is not 'a good provider'. He is a wise and far-sighted man. – mahmud k pukayoor Mar 9 '17 at 5:36

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