Another translation: "Speak kindly of the dead." It is believed that Chilon of Sparta, one of the wise men of sixth-century B.C. Greece, is the author of this saying. Keep in mind that this would be a Latin translation of what Chilon said in Greek.
The advice to everyone is to speak well of the recently dead or, if you can not say anything good, to keep quiet.
It was Persius, the first-century A.D. Roman poet, who stated in his Satires that effort is required to produce anything of value. He also said that anything once produced can not become non-existent again, when he wrote: In nihilum nil posse reverti or "There is nothing that can be reduced to nothing."
This Latin phrase is applied broadly and may suggest that a dull mind can not be expected to produce great thoughts. The first-century Roman poet, Lucretius, wrote in De Rerum Natura about the creation of the world in which he said, Nil posse creari de nilo, "Nothing can be created out of nothing."
Another version is also given as Ex nihilo nihil fit suggesting that every effect must have a cause or that the world, for example, could not have been made from nothing.
If this proverb contains any accuracy, the U.S. must have many unhappy people.
An alternate interpretation, "The devil finds mischief for idle hands."
Motto of Henry II, The Saint, (1002-1024) of Germany. He was considered prudent and powerful in his endeavors. He restored the lost reputation of the German-Roman realm and was an eager promoter of a reform movement started by the church.
In 1007; at an Imperial Diet in Franfurt, in the course of the Christianization of the territories on the upper Main, he founded the bishopric of Bamberg, which earned him the name "the Saint". He, and his wife Kunigunde, were buried there. In 1146, Henry II was canonized followed by Kunigunde in 1200.