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as a dog returns to his vomit, so a fool repeats his folly

Foolish people are apt to repeat their missteps. A: "I can't believe Sarah is going skiing again, after she broke her leg the last time." B: "Well, as a dog returns to his vomit, so a fool repeats his folly."
See also: dog, folly, fool, repeat, return

history repeats itself

Said when something that has happened in the past recurs in the present. Can be used in the negative to mean the opposite. And, once again, I got dumped. History repeats itself. The home team has lost their last three game sevens, so I bet they're hoping that history doesn't repeat itself tonight.
See also: history, itself, repeat

lather, rinse, (and) repeat

An instruction to repeat the same steps of some process, perhaps multiple times, in order to achieve the same desired result. A reference to instructions found on some bottles of shampoo. It's easy, you just cut a piece of the material to length, fold it in half, then sew along the edges. Lather, rinse, and repeat until you've done 50 of them. My last job was so mindless. I would just input customer details into a spreadsheet, export the file to our internal format, then add it to the company database. Lather, rinse, repeat, all day long.
See also: repeat

repeat (oneself)

To repeat what one has previously done or stated. Be sure to take detailed notes, because I will not repeat myself. People surprised at the sudden shift in public opinion would do well to remember that history tends to repeat itself.
See also: repeat

repeat after me

Once I say something, please repeat it. A noun or pronoun can be used between "repeat" and "after," specifying what is to be repeated. A: "Repeat after me: I solemnly swear." B: "I solemnly swear." Please repeat the vows after me.
See also: after, repeat
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

History repeats itself.

Prov. The same kinds of events seem to happen over and over. It seems that history is about to repeat itself for that poor country; it is about to be invaded again. Alan: The country is headed for an economic depression. Jane: How do you know? Alan: History repeats itself. The conditions now are just like the conditions before the last major depression.
See also: history, itself, repeat
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

repeat oneself

Express oneself in the same way or with the same words, as in Grandma forgets she has told us this story before and repeats herself over and over, or This architect tends to repeat himself-all his houses look alike. A well-known version of this idiom is the proverb History repeats itself, first recorded (in English) in 1561. For example, Her mother also married when she was 18-history repeats itself. [Mid-1800s]
See also: repeat
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
SIR, - regarding the TV licence debate, I thought readers might be interested in the following: Weekly totals - BBC1 repeats 30 hours 5 minutes; BBC2 repeats 71 hours 45 minutes; STV repeats 39 hours 30 minutes; Channel 4 repeats 86 hours 29 minutes; CH5 repeats 68 hours 25 minutes.
Exon 1 encodes a protein associated with transcriptional activity and also has CAG trinucleotide polymorphic repeats.4 Long (CAG)n repeats in the AR compromise several androgen - dependent functions, especially erectile function.
To allow more general repeats, Ucamco introduced a command called AB that creates a block aperture that can be flashed in any location and orientation.
VIEWERS are likely to feel a sense of deja vu during the festive season after it was revealed that this year's Christmas TV has more repeats then ever before.
IT will be deja view all over again this Christmas with TV channels running huge chunks of repeats.
The particularly interesting part of this service was that the PCT decided, after discussion with the LOC, to include repeats of visual fields, in addition to an intraocular pressure (IOP) repeat readings service.
According to the Daily Mail, the programme schedules are so jammed with repeats that viewers may have to wait until as late as 8 p.m.
Most such repeats are indeed found in genomic regions that lack known function.
SO Freeview's survey tells us we all prefer to watch repeats over Christmas?
WE may be sinking in a sea of repeats, but the powers-that-be don't always repeat the shows which deserve to be repeated.
In their rush to get shows online, webheads may be inadvertently strangling TV's golden goose: repeats.
In math, a pattern that repeats itself on different scales is called a fractal.
Particularly during the summer months, the schedules are often packed with repeats, no doubt on the mistaken assumption that - like TV executives - we are all away on exotic holidays fo r weeks on end.
As Donnybrook's highly-paid presenters and stars pack their bags for their holidays, TV chiefs have been accused of running repeats to fill out their listings.
In a double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover study, 96 healthy volunteers who were genotyped for the dopamine transporter variable number of tandem repeats polymorphism and found to have variant alleles of the 40-bp repeat, received placebo, and 10 mg and 20 mg of oral d-amphetamine in random order.