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Words of Wisdom -- My Favorite Proverbs from Around the World

Posted by Guy Pirro   07/14/2020 10:54PM

Words of Wisdom -- My Favorite Proverbs from Around the World

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
- Lao Tzu

 

“A journey of a thousand sites begins with a single click.”

- American Proverb (Silicon Valley)

 

 


 

Words of Wisdom -- My Favorite Proverbs from Around the World

 

 
"When you have completed ninety-five percent of your journey, you are halfway there."
- Japanese Proverb


"A diplomat must always think twice before he says nothing."
- Irish Proverb


"If you can walk, you can dance... If you can talk, you can sing."
- Zimbabwean Proverb


"A half-truth is a whole lie."
- Jewish Proverb


"By learning you will teach -- By teaching you will learn."
- Italian Proverb


"If the camel once gets his nose in a tent, the body will soon follow."
- Saudi Proverb

 

 

“If you don't know where you are going, then any road will do.”

- Tibetan Proverb



"Better to be slapped with the truth than kissed by a lie."
- Russian Proverb


"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day… Teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."
- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“The ruin of a nation begins in the homes of its people.”

- Ghanaian Proverb

 

 

“There is no right way to do the wrong thing.”

- Turkish Proverb

 

 

"Words must be weighed, not counted."
- Polish Proverb

 

 

“Fruits of labor are always sweet.”

- Nepali Proverb

 

 

“Quarrels end, but words once spoken never die.”

- Sierra Leone Proverb

 

 

“Pride is concerned with who is right... Humility is concerned with what is right.”

- Pakistani Proverb



"When the blind man carries the lame man, both go forward."
- Swedish Proverb


"The fish sees the bait, not the hook."
- Mongolian Proverb

 

 

“A dog that barks all the time gets little attention.”

- Argentinean Proverb

 

 

“Lower your voice and strengthen your argument.”

- Lebanese Proverb

 

 

“It's not shameful to not know… But it is shameful to not ask.”

- Azerbaijani Proverb

 

 

“Learn politeness from the impolite.”

- Egyptian Proverb

 

 

“The roaring lion kills no game.”

- Tanzanian Proverb

 

 

“Truth and oil always come to the surface.”

- Spanish Proverb

 

 

“Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped.”

- Liberian Proverb

 

 

“The one chased away with a club comes back… But the one chased away with reason does not.”

- Eritrean Proverb

 

 

“Rare is the person who can weigh faults of another without putting his thumb on the scale.”

- Paraguayan Proverb

 

 

“You cannot un-ring a bell.”

- American Proverb

 

 

“There is no competition among lighthouses.”

- Mexican Proverb

 

 

“You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink.”

- British Proverb

 

 

“Don't ask God to guide your footsteps if you are not willing to move your feet.”

- Portuguese Proverb

 

 

“Even a blind hen sometimes finds a grain of corn.”

- German Proverb

 

 

“He who is in a hurry always arrives late."

- Georgian Proverb

 

 

“Spoken words fly away… Written words remain.”

- Latin Proverb

 

 

“Two men in a burning house must not stop to argue.”

- Sudanese Proverb

 

 

“God gives food to every bird, but does not throw it into the nest.”

- Montenegrin Proverb

 

 

“One minute of patience… Ten years of peace.”

- Greek Proverb

 

 

“Sometimes you have to be silent to be heard.”

- Swiss Proverb

 

 

“Until the lion tells his side of the story, the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.”

- Gambian Proverb

 

 

“A drowning person can be saved by the smallest stick.”

- Indian Proverb

 

 

“If you dream of moving mountains tomorrow, you must start by lifting small stones today.”

- Equatorial Guinean Proverb

 

 

“He who asks is a fool for five minutes... But he who does not ask remains a fool forever.”

- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“Words are like spears -- Once they leave your lips they can never come back.”

- Gambian Proverb

  

 

“We will be known forever by the tracks we leave.”

- Native American Proverb

 

 

“The horse must graze where it is tethered.”

- Belgian Proverb

 

 

“A chattering bird builds no nest.”

- Cameroonian Proverb

 

 

“Listen to what they say about others and you will know what they say about you.”

- Cuban Proverb

 

 

“A wise man hears one word and understands two.”

- Jewish Proverb

 

 

“Knowledge is like a garden -- If it is not cultivated, it cannot be harvested.”

- Guinean Proverb

 

 

“At high tide the fish eat ants… At low tide the ants eat fish.”

- Thai Proverb

 

 

“Do not choose for anyone what you do not choose for yourself.”

- Iranian Proverb

 

 

“Having two ears and one tongue, we should listen twice as much as we speak.”

- Turkish Proverb

 

 

“The hunter in pursuit of an elephant does not stop to throw stones at birds.”

- Ugandan Proverb

 

 

“Even though words have no wings, they can still fly a thousand miles.”

- Korean Proverb

 

 

“You shake in vain the branch that bears no fruit.”

- Samoan Proverb

 

 

 “No one tests the depth of the river with both feet.”

- Ghanaian Proverb

 

 

“It's not enough to learn how to ride -- You must also learn how to fall.”

- Mexican Proverb

 

 

“Don't insult the alligator until you've crossed the river.”

- Haitian Proverb

 

 

“The frog does not jump in the daytime without reason.”

- Nigerian Proverb

 

 

“Listen with one ear… Be suspicious with the other.”

 - Laotian Proverb

 

 

“If I listen, I have the advantage… If I speak, others have it.”

- Moroccan Proverb

 

 

“Everyone is creator of his own happiness.”

- Slovakian Proverb

 

 

“The path is made by walking.”

- South African Proverb

 

 

“The more wisdom you acquire, the more humble you become.”

- Armenian Proverb

 

 

“Stupidity is a disease without a medicine.”

- Saudi Proverb

 

 

“If the needle doesn't pass, the thread doesn't follow.”

- Comoros Proverb

 

 

“A horse has four legs, yet still stumbles.”

- Hungarian Proverb

 

 

“Clouds do not always mean rain… But smoke is a sure sign of fire.”

- Djiboutian Proverb

 

 

“In youth we learn… In old age we understand.”

- Ecuadorian Proverb

 

 

“Zeal without knowledge is a runaway horse.”

- German Proverb

 

 

“The hare jumps when you least expect it.”

- Honduran Proverb

  

 

“The drunken man's words are the sober man's thoughts.”

- Swedish Proverb

 

 

“More things grow in the garden than the gardener sows.”

- Spanish Proverb

 

 

“By the time the fool has learned the game, the players have dispersed.”

- Guinea Bissau Proverb

 

 

“Don't hear one and judge two.”

- Czechian Proverb

 

 

 “Treat the earth well -- It was not given to you by your parents. It is loaned to you by your children.”

- Kenyan Proverb

 

 

“The wind does not break a tree that bends.”

- Namibian Proverb

 

 

 “You can bend a young twig, but it is hard to bend an old tree.”

- Laotian Proverb

 

 

“Those who speak aloud are boastful... Those who speak softly are unsure... Those who don’t speak are dangerous.”

- Singaporean Proverb

 

 

“First think -- Then talk.”

- Tajik Proverb

  

 

“What you don't see with your eyes, don't invent with your mouth.”

- Jewish Proverb

 

 

“The worst currents are hidden under gently flowing water.”

- Mexican Proverb

 

 

“A good listener needs few words.”

- Basque Proverb

 

  

“Half of an orange tastes just as sweet as a whole one.”

- Panamanian Proverb

 

 

“In the ditch where water has flowed, it will flow again.”

- Afghan Proverb

 

 

“Kindness can pluck the whiskers of a lion.”

- Moroccan Proverb

 

 

“He who knows much, does not speak much.”

- Ethiopian Proverb

 

 

“You don't really see the world if you only look through your own window.”

- Ukrainian Proverb

 

 

“God gives the wheat… He doesn't bake the bread.”

- Austrian Proverb

 

 

“In dense woods, the trees grow straight.”

- Latvian Proverb

 

 

“Many see… Few understand.”

- Moldavian Proverb

 

 

“Don’t choose a house, choose a neighbor.”

- Uzbek Proverb

 

 

“An old poacher makes the best gamekeeper.”

- Zambian Proverb

 

 

“Ninety-nine lies may help you, but the hundredth will give you away.”

- Botswanan Proverb

 

 

“If you always walk down the same path, you’ll only go where you’ve already been.

- Chadian Proverb

 

 

“Say nothing about another that you wouldn't want to hear about yourself.”

- El Salvadoran Proverb

 

 

“Knowledge builds up… Ignorance destroys.”

- Kyrgyz Proverb

 

 

“Do not cut down the tree that gives you shade.”

- Jordanian Proverb

 

 

“What is said over the dead lion’s body cannot be said to him alive.”

- Congolese Proverb

 

 

“To one who does not know, a small garden is a forest.”

- Gabonese Proverb

 

 

“The child learns to walk by falling down.”

- Kazakh Proverb

 

 

“There are no shortcuts to the top of the palm tree.”

- Mozambican Proverb

 

 

“He who doesn't look ahead, gets left behind.”

- Venezuelan Proverb

 

 

“As the old ones sing, so do the young ones chirp.”

- Dutch Proverb

 

 

“Only he who wanders finds new paths.”

- Norwegian Proverb

  

 

“Better an hour of thought than a year of regret.”

- Slovakian Proverb

 

 

“Politeness costs little, but yields much.”

- Catalan Proverb

 

 

“In a fight with a fool, it's the wise man who quits.”

- Madagascar Proverb

 

 

 “Facts are stubborn things.”

- Scottish Proverb

 

 

“Even the fool is thought wise if he remains silent.”

- Swedish Proverb

 

 

“By learning to obey, you will know how to command.”

- Italian Proverb

 

 

“The more you give, the more you receive.”

- Polynesian Proverb

 

 

“Dig your well before you are thirsty.”

- Indian Proverb

 

 

“A sparrow in the hand is better than a pigeon on the branch.”

- Serbian Proverb

 

 

“It is not the hen that cackles the loudest that hatches the most eggs.”

- French Proverb

 

 

“You cannot hunt with a tied dog.”

- Albanian Proverb

 

 

“Where people are promising you much, bring a small bag.”

- Bosnian Proverb

 

 

“God closes one door, but opens a hundred.”

- Croatian Proverb

 

 

“Wisdom is easy to carry, but difficult to gather.”

- Czechian Proverb

 

 

“Every man is the blacksmith of his own happiness.”

- Danish Proverb

 

 

“Do bad and remember… Do good and forget.”

- Algerian Proverb

 

 

“Iron must be forged when it is hot.”

- Finnish Proverb

 

 

“If you want to beat a dog, you will soon find a stick.”

- Latin Proverb

 

 

 “Good wine needs no label.”

- Hungarian Proverb

 

 

“A wise man changes his mind… A fool never will.”

- Icelandic Proverb

 

 

“An empty drum gives a loud sound.”

- Indonesian Proverb

 

 

“He who has no money in the purse must have honey in the mouth.”

- Italian Proverb

 

 

“The tree is known by its fruit.”

- Polish Proverb

 

 

“What the goat does, the kid follows.”

- Jamaican Proverb

 

 

“Even monkeys fall from trees.”

- Korean Proverb

 

 

“Vision with action is a daydream… Action without vision is a nightmare.”

- Japanese Proverb

 

 

“Without the support of small pebbles, a big rock cannot be stable.”

- Indian Proverb

 

 

“Straight ahead is shortest, but not always easiest.”

- Norwegian Proverb

 

 

“He who looks at only the face, doesn't see the heart.”

- Portuguese Proverb

 

 

“He who does not act when he can, may not be able to act when he wants.”

- Spanish Proverb

 

 

“Politeness costs nothing, but yields much.”

- Slovenian Proverb

 

 

“Gratitude ranks as the least of virtues… And the lack of gratitude as the worst of vices.”

- Paraguayan Proverb

 

 

“What is unclearly said, is unclearly thought.”

- Swedish Proverb

 

 

“The person who recognizes his major mistakes is on the road to wisdom.”

- Colombian Proverb

 

 

“Cocks that crow too early will quickly find themselves in the pot.”

- Turkish Proverb

 

 

“When a father's work is done, the result is a well-trained son.”

- Uzbek Proverb

 

 

“Proverbs in conversation are torches in darkness.”

- Venezuelan Proverb

 

 

“From a pound of talk, an ounce of understanding.”

- Yemeni Proverb

 

 

“The shark that has eaten cannot swim with the shark that is hungry.”

- Zambian Proverb

 

 

“The one who throws the stone forgets… The one who is hit remembers forever.”

- Angolan Proverb

 

 

“Let him speak who has seen with his eyes.”

- Congolese Proverb

 

 

“A musician paid in advance does not play as well.”

- Nicaraguan Proverb

 

 

“Don't think there are no crocodiles because the water is calm.”

- Malaysian Proverb

 

 

“If you run from a wolf, you may run into a bear.”

- Lithuanian Proverb

 

 

“If you are planning for a year, plant rice…  If you are planning for a decade, plant trees…  If you are planning for a lifetime, educate your children.”

- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“The bitterness of studying is preferable to the bitterness of ignorance.”

- Filipino Proverb

 

 

“A little spark can kindle a great fire.”

- Syrian Proverb

 

 

“All birds will flock to a fruitful tree.”

- Senegalese Proverb

 

 

“To be without knowledge is to be without light.”

- Somali Proverb

 

 

“He who has studied himself is his own master.”

- Sri Lankan Proverb

 

 

“Don't butter the skillet before catching the fish.”

- Togolese Proverb

 

 

“If a tree is not consumed by insects from within, it can live for a thousand years.”

- Turkmen Proverb

 

 

“It is better to slip with the foot, than with the tongue.”

- Montenegrin Proverb

 

 

“Until the snake is dead, do not drop the stick.”

- Ivory Coast Proverb

 

 

“Youths talk first and then listen… The elderly listen and then talk.”

- Lesotho Proverb

 


"A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit."
- Greek Proverb

 

“We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors... We borrow it from our children.”
- Native American Proverb

“A tortoise makes progress when it sticks its neck out.”

- Swazi Proverb

 

 

“The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.”

- British Proverb

 

 

“You can’t judge a book by its cover.”

- American Proverb

 

 

“A buffalo is held by ropes -- A man by his words.”

- Malawian Proverb

 

 

“You can't feed your donkey only when you need to ride it.”

- Sudanese Proverb

 

 

“The one who understands does not speak… The one who speaks does not understand.”

- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“A hunter who has only one arrow does not shoot with careless aim.”

- Namibian Proverb

 

 

“You catch fish with both hands.”

- Vietnamese Proverb

 

 

“Open your door to a good day… And prepare yourself for a bad one.”

- Moroccan Proverb

 

 

“He who avoids the temptations, avoids the sin.”

- Guatemalan Proverb

 

 

“You don't study to be a fool.”

- Uruguayan Proverb

 

 

“What makes you happy, makes you rich.”

- Belarusian Proverb

 

 

 “Life is a ladder -- Some will climb up… Others down.”

- Bulgarian Proverb

 

 

“Envy shoots at others and wounds itself.”

- Costa Rican Proverb

 

 

“Only you can scratch your itch.”

- Libyan Proverb

 

 

“Never poke a jaguar with a short stick.”

- Brazilian Proverb

 

 

“Revere the elders… Respect the peers… Be kind to the young.”

- Burmese Proverb

 

 

“A quarrel is like buttermilk… The more you stir it, the more sour it grows.”

- Bolivian Proverb

 

 

“Where there is sugar, there are ants.”

- Malaysian Proverb

 

 

“You make the road by walking on it.”

- Nicaraguan Proverb

 

 

“It is better to prevent than to cure.”

- Peruvian Proverb

 

 

 “Rotten wood cannot be carved.”

- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“A monkey dressed up is still a monkey.”

- Filipino Proverb

 

 

“The monkey does not see his own hind backside… He sees his neighbor's.”

- Zimbabwean Proverb

 

 

“If you hurt the reputation of another, you damage your own.”

- Togolese Proverb

 

 

“Never dive before you measure.”

- Tunisian Proverb

 

 

“Arguments of the strongest always carry the most weight.”

- French Proverb

 

 

“Birds of a feather flock together.”

- British Proverb

 

 

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

- American Proverb

 

 

“You must not run after two hares at the same time.”

- Romanian Proverb

 

 

“Advice is least heeded when most needed.”

- Latin Proverb

 

 

 “The monkey knows the tree it climbs.”

- Puerto Rican Proverb

 

 

“Don’t sail out farther than you can row back.”

 - Danish Proverb

 

 

“Those who wish to sing always find a song.”

-  Swedish Proverb

 

 

“The squeaky wheel gets the grease.”

- British Proverb

 

 

“Don't let yesterday use up too much of today.”

- Native American Proverb

 

 

“Even a small star shines in the darkness.”

- Finnish Proverb

 

 

“Everyone is kneaded out of the same dough, but not baked in the same oven.”

- Jewish Proverb

 

 

 “There is no medicine to cure hatred.”

- Ghanaian Proverb

 

 

“Don't count your chickens before they hatch."

- British Proverb

 

 

“The palest ink is more reliable than the most powerful memory.”

- Chinese Proverb

 

 

“A journey of a thousand sites begins with a single click.”

- American Proverb

 

 

 

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