African proverbs

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Proverbs from all of Africa.

List Of African Proverbs[edit]

  • A thorn can be removed by another thorn.
  • A wise man sees further seated, than a boy up on a tree.
  • A stubborn goat ends its life in a pot
  • An undecided man is the worst disaster of the village
  • By labor come wealth
  • Don't look where you fell, but where you slipped.
  • Don’t set sail using someone else’s star.
  • Those who are controlled by drowsiness are fools, but those who control their sleep are wise -- By Tafara Musenga.
  • The rock that is in the middle of the sea can't hear the rain.
  • One hand cannot wash itself.
  • Only a fool tests the depth of the water with both feet.
  • One bad nut often destroys a lot of good nuts.
  • Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far. (West African proverb)
  • The jollof on top of the cooler was once at the bottom of the pot. - by Mathew Adebunmi.
  • The sun is the king of torches.
  • Tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today.
  • East African proverb, The man who hangs around a beautiful girl without proposing to her, ends up fetching water for guests at her wedding.
  • You need to act fast. There are somethings that you have to say right on time.
  • You condemn on hearsay evidence alone, your sins increase.
  • Latin equivalent: When in doubt, in favor of the accused.
  • Do not wait until tomorrow to hunt.
  • Alone a youth runs fast, with an elder slow, but together they go far.
  • The tears running down your face do not blind you.
  • Only the feet of the voyager know the path.
  • Little by little the bird build its nest.
  • Until the snake is dead, do not drop the stick.
  • The river swells from the little streams.
  • A friends is someone you share the path with.
  • A fiends is like a source of water during a long voyage.
  • The bridge is repaired only when someone falls in the water.
  • If you do not seal the holes, you will have to rebuild the walls.
  • To teach a heavy mind person is a lost of time and energy. Everything passes
  • A home carries weight because of the husband.
  • The man is the central pole of the house.
  • A man dies in the open, a woman indoors.
  • He who is not careful gets contaminated.
  • A private matter is not like the old cloth that has been spread to dry in the marketplace.
  • A tree is straightened while it is still young.

See also[edit]