shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations, from

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shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations, from proverbial saying, early 20th century; meaning that wealth gained in one generation will be lost by the third. The saying is often attributed to the Scottish-born American industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie (1835–1919) but is not found in his writings.

A similar idea is found in from clogs to clogs in three generations.