Proverbs 91 to 176

DIANE 91 - 176

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

91. Dilo di bolaea ka lobeko.

Goods injure their owners by making them vain.

The fairest looking shoe may pinch the foot.

92. Di noang dia dibosana.

Those that drink make room for the others (said of animals).

 

93. Dipholofolo diatlanegela bacongoana.

Gam will always appear on the side of the inexperienced hunters.

(a) God has given nuts to some who have no teeth.
(b) Arma amens capio; nec sat rationis in armis. (L.)

94. Di-sa-itsaneng dia oelana.

Those that are unknown to each other spring surprises on one another.

Great wits meet.

95. Di sela mmapa ga di ratane.

Those who pick (wild berries) in the same wood do not love each other.

Two of a trade seldom agree.

96. Ditlamelo tsa pula di baakangoa gale.

Precautions against rain are taken beforehand.

Hoist your sail when the wind is fair.

97. Ditlhale-tlhale tsa lobooa di bonanye dinoko-pele; Moroa o bonye none, none ea bona Moroa.

The wiseacres of the plain have found out one another.
The Bushman (hunter) has seen the blesbuck; and the blesbuck descried the hunter.

Familiarity breeds contempt.

98. Di-tsa bana ba mpa ga di tsenoe.

Family affairs (quarrels) are not to be entered.

Put not thy hand between the bark and the tree.

99. Ditsebe di ea molato di sa o laledioa.

Ears usually witness a matter without invitation.

Walls have ears.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

100. Eare bodiba boo cha, dikgoadibane di ikepele mo morageng.

When the pools dry up, water-tortoises bury themselves in the mud.

When the strong box contains no more both friends and flatterers shun the door.

101. Eare e bona mong ere “mu”.

When it sees its owner (the ox) will always low.

I pounce on what is mine wherever I find it.

102. Eare e busa' elama a tle a bole.

Eggs usually go bad when not laid upon.

 

103. Eare go a lacoa bobe e tloge e e ntshe bololo.

(By) licking it too much (the cow) will cause (the calf) to get sores.

(a) A child may have too much of its mother's blessings.
(b) Boomen die men veel verplant gedyen zelden. (D.)

104. Eare go tuloe roga kgosi, u roge.

When you are sent to insult the king do so (i.e. The fault lies with the one who sent you).

The principal is liable for the acts of his agents.

105. Eare ke ea lecholo kgono ke aba ntoa. Bakoena ba bolole. Tumelong gone go rileng ke tsenang ke le nosi? (Kgosi Sechele).

When I go on a game drive, or declare war, the Bakwena turn out; but what is the matter with Christianity that I should enter it without my people? Chief Secele. (But for Dr. Livingstone's intervention he was going to force his people to join the Church with him.)

Every Stoic was a Stoic, but in Christendom where is the Christian? (Emerson.)

106. Eare ke tla jela ka mogocana omoshou go no go nna jaana.

When things are like this, it is time for me to eat out of a white dish.

(a) When Fortune smiles on thee, take advantage.
(b) Make the best of your opportunities.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

107. Eare le go tlhabetse u le aramele, u gopola ka mosho le tsena mo marung.

When the sun shines on you, bask in it; remember that tomorrow he may go behind the clouds.

Make hay while the sun shines.

108. Eare motho are podi dia sisa a bo a raea tsa gagabo.

When a man speaks of rich milkers depend upon it he means his own goats.

All his geese are swans.

109. Eare ngaka e retelecoe go alafe ngakana.

When a clever doctor fails; try one less clever.

C'est une petite pluie qui mouille. (F.)

110. E bonoa ke mocoga pele, mocoga morago ga e bona.

The early riser alone gets it, not the late riser.

The early bird catches the worm.

111. E dika e kgatlhe ga e itsioe.

Nobody knows what the future has in store.

Lord, we know what we are, but know not what we may be.

112. “E” ea monna ke “e”, ea mosadi ke eone “nyaea”.

A man's Yes is a “Yes”, a woman's Yes is often a “No”.

(a) Between a woman's “Yes” and “No” you may insert the point of a needle.
(b) Ein Mann, ein Wort; ein Wort, ein Mann. (D.)

113. E e anyang e leletse e ruta e e mo maleng.

The calf that raises its head to suck teaches the one that's not yet born.

He who does me good teaches me to be good.

114. E e mo mpeng e bolokegile.

That which is inside (the stomach) is saved.

Quae amissa salva. (L.)

115. Ekabo ele chukudu e koo e ntlhabile.

If it were a rhinoceros it would have tossed (pierced) me.

Talk of the devil and he'll appear.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

116. Ekete erile a tsaloa a se ka a lela.

He looks as if he never cried when he was a baby.

He looks as though he had sucked his dam through a hurdle.

117. E mashi ga e itsale.

A good milch-cow does not always bear itself (i.e. bear a calf that grows up to be a good milk-yielder).

A black hen will lay a white egg.
(a) Cowards father cowards, and base things sire base. (Con.)
(b) A fonte puro pura defluit aqua. (Con.)

118. E nyema-nyema e bona 'melegi.

Little creatures will always sham fatigue when they see that there is someone big enough to carry them.

 

119. Ere phala ele khubidu gale, ebile u e tlotsa lecoku.

The phala (an antelope) is naturally red, yet you smear it with red ochre.

Would you dye a raven black?

120. Ere u fitlhela pina e binoa u e bine.

When you find people dancing a walt, dance it.

In a fiddler's house all are dancers.

121. Erile lo bolela loare kolobe o kana ka poo!

You told us that a pic was as big as a bull.

He travelled with Mandeville.

122. E senang meno e lomeloa ke mogolooa eone.

The toothless one must get its elder brother (or sister) to bite for it.

(a) Helping lame dogs over stiles.
(b) Il faut attendre le boiteux. (F.)

123. Etlare ke tlare “ke dipitse” ke bone mebala ea cone.

Only when I see their stripes will I believe that I have (killed) some zebras.

Seeing is believing.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

124. E tlhale e amusa e eme, E tshilo e amusa e letse.

The wise dam sucks its young while standing up, the foolish one sucks hers lying down (not so ready to dart off when hunters appear).

Forewarned is forearmed.

125. E tsee seditse.

Take its tail! (= Give him the cup, he has won the game.)

To bear the bell.

126. Fa gare fela jaka phio.

As deep in the middle as a kidney is embedded in the caul-fat.

The farther in the deeper.

127. Fa go chele madiba a magolo, rona re tla bonala kae?

Now that the great lakes have dried up, what shall become of us?

No door shuts but another opens (Con.).

128. Fa u 'ngapa ke tla go ingapela.

If you scratch me I will scratch you too.

Tickle me, Bobby, and I'll tickle you.

129. Fa u no ule chukudu, u ka bo u ntlhabile.

If you were a rhinoceros you would have tossed (pierced) me.

If it were a bear it would bite you.

130. “Feta re ee kong” ga se eaga ope.

(To say) “Lead me” (my child) is for no one (in particular).

 

131. Fifing go choaraganoa ka dikobo.

In the dark people hold to one another's cloaks.

Adversity makes strange bed-fellows.

132. Fifing go gangoa e lelang.

In the dark, the (cow) that lows gets milked.

 

133. Foko ja kgosi le ageloa mosako.

Always build a fence round the King's word.

The king can do no wrong.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

134. Foko ja maabanyane ga le tlhabe kgomo.

The evening word does not kill an ox.

Wishers and woulders be no good householders.

135. Ga ba lekane, ba gkaolecoe.

Not only are they equal (in size), but it seems that they are cut to measure.

There went but a pair of shears between them.

136. Ba ba ntshane se inong.

They do not pick each other's teeth.

They agree like London clocks.

137. Ga ba tsaalane molelo.

They do not fetch fires from one another's grates.  1 

They agree like cats and dogs.

138. Ga di ke di eteleloa ke e namagadi pele, dia tle di oele ka selomo.

Big game should never be led by the females, lest they fall over a precipice.

It is a silly flock where the ewe bears the bell.

139. Ga eare lo bolela loare kolobe o kana ka poo?

Did you not tell us that a pig was as big as a bull?

Ferdinand M. Pinto was but a type of thee, thou liar of the first magnitude (Congreave).

140. Ga e ke e bopa marota ale mabedi.

It (a bull) never bellows at the second ridge.

For you and I are past our dancing days.

141. Ga e ke e gangoa ka mogogoroana namane ele fa.

One never presents a stuffed (dummy) calf to the cow while the calf is at hand.

 

142. Ga e ke e tlhasela e dumela [tau].

It never attacks while roaring (a lion).

Great barkers are never great biters.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

143. Ga e ke e tseneloa mosimeng.

Never follow a beast into its lair.

Gallus in sterquilinio suo plurimum potest. (L.)

144. Ga go kgomo di senang bobi.

There are no cattle without a dung heap.

A wound never heals so well but that the scar can be seen.

145. Ga go mogakajane o se ke o nneloa sebibi.

No raven is so bad that none would mourn its death.

Everything that happens to us leaves some trace behind it.

146. Ga go mophato o sa tlholeloeng.

There is no regiment (or age division, i.e. generation) without an omen.

Every people has a prophet (even among the Apostles there was a Judas).

147. Ga go naga e senang masilo.

There is no country without its fools.

Were there no fools bad ware would not pass.

148. Ga go tume di melala.

It is not only those with thick necks that are famous.

(a) A little body doth often harbour a great soul.
(b) The biggest horses are not the best travellers.

148a. Ga ke gogoe loleme ke se kgaga.

I am not going to have my tongue drawn like an anteater's.

So fragt man den Bauern di Künste ab. (G.)

149. Ga ke je matlhatsa ke se nca.

I am not a dog that eats its own vomit.

 

150. Ga ke thata ke le nosi, ke thata ka ba bangoe.

“By myself I am not strong,” but I am strong in a crowd.

Show me the man who would go to heaven alone, and I will show you one who will never be admitted.

151. Ga ke thata kele nosi, ke thata ka lencoe.

Alone I am not strong, but beside a rock I am.

In a multitude of counsellors there is wisdom.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

152. Ga ke palame ka mekotla ea babangoe.

I do not wish to climb over other people's backs (to make ladders of them).

I seek not to wax great by others waning.

153. Ga le ke le epa le kgatlhana ese ja dipholofolo.

The disposition of a chase is never arranged after the manner of a game-driver (= in a circle).

 

154. Ga le ke le feta kgomo le tlhaba motho.

It (the spear) never passes an ox and pierces a man (= If some one is in trouble sell the ox and bail him out).

 

155. Ga Modimo ga go itsioe.

God's (position) is unknown.

To God's council chamber we have no key. (Dan.)

156. Ga montle matlho montle pelo.

Not her face, but her heart is comely.

She's better than she's bonny.

157. Ga na phokoje oa morokagangoa le ene.

No other jackal skin can be sewn to this one (i.e. a quarrelsome person).

A subtle slippery knave.

158. Ga nko go lekanoa gose matlho.

(Two) persons are never as equal as (a pair of) eyes.

Every shoe fits not every foot.

159. Ga nyala mosadi, o nyetse monna.

He has not married a woman; for she is (the equal of) a man.

Sexu foemina, ingenio vir. (L.)

160. Ga oa, o ribame ka mpa ea sebete.

He has not only fallen, but he has fallen flat on his belly.

He came out of the little end of the horn.

161. Ga re je di oelang.

Nothing that we eat digests.

Pap with a hatchet.

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

162. Gase goo lobelo, goo marapo a thata.

Not to the swift (the race is) but to the most enduring.

(a) The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong.
(b) Ce n'est pas tout de courier bien, il faut partir à temps. (F.)

163. Ga se koo, ke koana.

It is not there, but here.

You feel yourself an exile in the East; but in the West too it is exile; I know not where under the sun it is not exile.

164. Gase pitsa tlhatleoa pele, ke pitsa e beseledioang.

It is not the pot put-on-first, but the pot put-on-fire (that gets done).

The fittest will survive.

165. Do.

Do.

The first shall be last and the last shall be first.

166. Gase sepe re tla kopanela ko kobong ea kgomo.

It's nothing, we shall meet near the ox-hide  2  (at death).

Yet a little while and we shall all meet there.

167. Gase tlala tlhaola malata, ke marumo, ma-ja-magosana.

It is not hunger, the chooser of servants, but spears the slayers of princes.

This fell Sergeant, Death, is strict in his arrest.

168. Gatoe choshoane e kile ea roma tlou.

They say that an ant once made an errand-boy of an elephant.

Ich habe es öfters rühmen hören,
Ein Komodiant könnte einen Pfarrer lehren. (G.)

169. Ga u botlha, u coa meding.

You are not bitter but you come from the roots.

(a) What's bred in the bone comes out in the flesh.
(b) Filius istarum lacrymarum. (L.)

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SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

170. Goana di matlabanyana, ma-thabisa digogo.

See: Digoana tsa basadi.

(a) A drunken man may soon be made to dance.
(b) Wine neither keeps secrets nor fulfils promises.

171. Goare go bisa' bitsa motho go bitse Modimo.

When man doesn't call, God does.

(a) Whom the hearts of men shut out straightway the heart of God takes in.
(b) Désire de Dieu et désire de l'homme sont deux. (F.)

172. Goare go shuioa go eloe ruri.

When men die they depart for ever.

There is a salve for every sore but Death.

173. Goa shoa motho go sale motho.

When a man dies a man remains.

(a) There's as good fish in the sea as ever came out of it.
(b) When nature removes a great man, people explore the horizon for a successor; but none comes and none will come. (Con.)

174. Go bapalela mo kgetsing e e lechoba.

To save one's earnings in a bottomless purse.

He has a hole under his nose that all his money runs into.

175. Go bua diphirimisi.

To talk nonsense.

Fumos vendera. (L.)

176. Go bua gase go dira.

To speak is not to act.

(a) Easy to say is hard to do.
(b) Le dire est autre chose quela faire. (F.)

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Proverbs 91 to 176

DIANE 91 - 176

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

91. Dilo di bolaea ka lobeko.

Goods injure their owners by making them vain.

The fairest looking shoe may pinch the foot.

92. Di noang dia dibosana.

Those that drink make room for the others (said of animals).

 

93. Dipholofolo diatlanegela bacongoana.

Gam will always appear on the side of the inexperienced hunters.

(a) God has given nuts to some who have no teeth.
(b) Arma amens capio; nec sat rationis in armis. (L.)

94. Di-sa-itsaneng dia oelana.

Those that are unknown to each other spring surprises on one another.

Great wits meet.

95. Di sela mmapa ga di ratane.

Those who pick (wild berries) in the same wood do not love each other.

Two of a trade seldom agree.

96. Ditlamelo tsa pula di baakangoa gale.

Precautions against rain are taken beforehand.

Hoist your sail when the wind is fair.

97. Ditlhale-tlhale tsa lobooa di bonanye dinoko-pele; Moroa o bonye none, none ea bona Moroa.

The wiseacres of the plain have found out one another.
The Bushman (hunter) has seen the blesbuck; and the blesbuck descried the hunter.

Familiarity breeds contempt.

98. Di-tsa bana ba mpa ga di tsenoe.

Family affairs (quarrels) are not to be entered.

Put not thy hand between the bark and the tree.

99. Ditsebe di ea molato di sa o laledioa.

Ears usually witness a matter without invitation.

Walls have ears.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

100. Eare bodiba boo cha, dikgoadibane di ikepele mo morageng.

When the pools dry up, water-tortoises bury themselves in the mud.

When the strong box contains no more both friends and flatterers shun the door.

101. Eare e bona mong ere “mu”.

When it sees its owner (the ox) will always low.

I pounce on what is mine wherever I find it.

102. Eare e busa' elama a tle a bole.

Eggs usually go bad when not laid upon.

 

103. Eare go a lacoa bobe e tloge e e ntshe bololo.

(By) licking it too much (the cow) will cause (the calf) to get sores.

(a) A child may have too much of its mother's blessings.
(b) Boomen die men veel verplant gedyen zelden. (D.)

104. Eare go tuloe roga kgosi, u roge.

When you are sent to insult the king do so (i.e. The fault lies with the one who sent you).

The principal is liable for the acts of his agents.

105. Eare ke ea lecholo kgono ke aba ntoa. Bakoena ba bolole. Tumelong gone go rileng ke tsenang ke le nosi? (Kgosi Sechele).

When I go on a game drive, or declare war, the Bakwena turn out; but what is the matter with Christianity that I should enter it without my people? Chief Secele. (But for Dr. Livingstone's intervention he was going to force his people to join the Church with him.)

Every Stoic was a Stoic, but in Christendom where is the Christian? (Emerson.)

106. Eare ke tla jela ka mogocana omoshou go no go nna jaana.

When things are like this, it is time for me to eat out of a white dish.

(a) When Fortune smiles on thee, take advantage.
(b) Make the best of your opportunities.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

107. Eare le go tlhabetse u le aramele, u gopola ka mosho le tsena mo marung.

When the sun shines on you, bask in it; remember that tomorrow he may go behind the clouds.

Make hay while the sun shines.

108. Eare motho are podi dia sisa a bo a raea tsa gagabo.

When a man speaks of rich milkers depend upon it he means his own goats.

All his geese are swans.

109. Eare ngaka e retelecoe go alafe ngakana.

When a clever doctor fails; try one less clever.

C'est une petite pluie qui mouille. (F.)

110. E bonoa ke mocoga pele, mocoga morago ga e bona.

The early riser alone gets it, not the late riser.

The early bird catches the worm.

111. E dika e kgatlhe ga e itsioe.

Nobody knows what the future has in store.

Lord, we know what we are, but know not what we may be.

112. “E” ea monna ke “e”, ea mosadi ke eone “nyaea”.

A man's Yes is a “Yes”, a woman's Yes is often a “No”.

(a) Between a woman's “Yes” and “No” you may insert the point of a needle.
(b) Ein Mann, ein Wort; ein Wort, ein Mann. (D.)

113. E e anyang e leletse e ruta e e mo maleng.

The calf that raises its head to suck teaches the one that's not yet born.

He who does me good teaches me to be good.

114. E e mo mpeng e bolokegile.

That which is inside (the stomach) is saved.

Quae amissa salva. (L.)

115. Ekabo ele chukudu e koo e ntlhabile.

If it were a rhinoceros it would have tossed (pierced) me.

Talk of the devil and he'll appear.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

116. Ekete erile a tsaloa a se ka a lela.

He looks as if he never cried when he was a baby.

He looks as though he had sucked his dam through a hurdle.

117. E mashi ga e itsale.

A good milch-cow does not always bear itself (i.e. bear a calf that grows up to be a good milk-yielder).

A black hen will lay a white egg.
(a) Cowards father cowards, and base things sire base. (Con.)
(b) A fonte puro pura defluit aqua. (Con.)

118. E nyema-nyema e bona 'melegi.

Little creatures will always sham fatigue when they see that there is someone big enough to carry them.

 

119. Ere phala ele khubidu gale, ebile u e tlotsa lecoku.

The phala (an antelope) is naturally red, yet you smear it with red ochre.

Would you dye a raven black?

120. Ere u fitlhela pina e binoa u e bine.

When you find people dancing a walt, dance it.

In a fiddler's house all are dancers.

121. Erile lo bolela loare kolobe o kana ka poo!

You told us that a pic was as big as a bull.

He travelled with Mandeville.

122. E senang meno e lomeloa ke mogolooa eone.

The toothless one must get its elder brother (or sister) to bite for it.

(a) Helping lame dogs over stiles.
(b) Il faut attendre le boiteux. (F.)

123. Etlare ke tlare “ke dipitse” ke bone mebala ea cone.

Only when I see their stripes will I believe that I have (killed) some zebras.

Seeing is believing.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

124. E tlhale e amusa e eme, E tshilo e amusa e letse.

The wise dam sucks its young while standing up, the foolish one sucks hers lying down (not so ready to dart off when hunters appear).

Forewarned is forearmed.

125. E tsee seditse.

Take its tail! (= Give him the cup, he has won the game.)

To bear the bell.

126. Fa gare fela jaka phio.

As deep in the middle as a kidney is embedded in the caul-fat.

The farther in the deeper.

127. Fa go chele madiba a magolo, rona re tla bonala kae?

Now that the great lakes have dried up, what shall become of us?

No door shuts but another opens (Con.).

128. Fa u 'ngapa ke tla go ingapela.

If you scratch me I will scratch you too.

Tickle me, Bobby, and I'll tickle you.

129. Fa u no ule chukudu, u ka bo u ntlhabile.

If you were a rhinoceros you would have tossed (pierced) me.

If it were a bear it would bite you.

130. “Feta re ee kong” ga se eaga ope.

(To say) “Lead me” (my child) is for no one (in particular).

 

131. Fifing go choaraganoa ka dikobo.

In the dark people hold to one another's cloaks.

Adversity makes strange bed-fellows.

132. Fifing go gangoa e lelang.

In the dark, the (cow) that lows gets milked.

 

133. Foko ja kgosi le ageloa mosako.

Always build a fence round the King's word.

The king can do no wrong.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

134. Foko ja maabanyane ga le tlhabe kgomo.

The evening word does not kill an ox.

Wishers and woulders be no good householders.

135. Ga ba lekane, ba gkaolecoe.

Not only are they equal (in size), but it seems that they are cut to measure.

There went but a pair of shears between them.

136. Ba ba ntshane se inong.

They do not pick each other's teeth.

They agree like London clocks.

137. Ga ba tsaalane molelo.

They do not fetch fires from one another's grates.  1 

They agree like cats and dogs.

138. Ga di ke di eteleloa ke e namagadi pele, dia tle di oele ka selomo.

Big game should never be led by the females, lest they fall over a precipice.

It is a silly flock where the ewe bears the bell.

139. Ga eare lo bolela loare kolobe o kana ka poo?

Did you not tell us that a pig was as big as a bull?

Ferdinand M. Pinto was but a type of thee, thou liar of the first magnitude (Congreave).

140. Ga e ke e bopa marota ale mabedi.

It (a bull) never bellows at the second ridge.

For you and I are past our dancing days.

141. Ga e ke e gangoa ka mogogoroana namane ele fa.

One never presents a stuffed (dummy) calf to the cow while the calf is at hand.

 

142. Ga e ke e tlhasela e dumela [tau].

It never attacks while roaring (a lion).

Great barkers are never great biters.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

143. Ga e ke e tseneloa mosimeng.

Never follow a beast into its lair.

Gallus in sterquilinio suo plurimum potest. (L.)

144. Ga go kgomo di senang bobi.

There are no cattle without a dung heap.

A wound never heals so well but that the scar can be seen.

145. Ga go mogakajane o se ke o nneloa sebibi.

No raven is so bad that none would mourn its death.

Everything that happens to us leaves some trace behind it.

146. Ga go mophato o sa tlholeloeng.

There is no regiment (or age division, i.e. generation) without an omen.

Every people has a prophet (even among the Apostles there was a Judas).

147. Ga go naga e senang masilo.

There is no country without its fools.

Were there no fools bad ware would not pass.

148. Ga go tume di melala.

It is not only those with thick necks that are famous.

(a) A little body doth often harbour a great soul.
(b) The biggest horses are not the best travellers.

148a. Ga ke gogoe loleme ke se kgaga.

I am not going to have my tongue drawn like an anteater's.

So fragt man den Bauern di Künste ab. (G.)

149. Ga ke je matlhatsa ke se nca.

I am not a dog that eats its own vomit.

 

150. Ga ke thata ke le nosi, ke thata ka ba bangoe.

“By myself I am not strong,” but I am strong in a crowd.

Show me the man who would go to heaven alone, and I will show you one who will never be admitted.

151. Ga ke thata kele nosi, ke thata ka lencoe.

Alone I am not strong, but beside a rock I am.

In a multitude of counsellors there is wisdom.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

152. Ga ke palame ka mekotla ea babangoe.

I do not wish to climb over other people's backs (to make ladders of them).

I seek not to wax great by others waning.

153. Ga le ke le epa le kgatlhana ese ja dipholofolo.

The disposition of a chase is never arranged after the manner of a game-driver (= in a circle).

 

154. Ga le ke le feta kgomo le tlhaba motho.

It (the spear) never passes an ox and pierces a man (= If some one is in trouble sell the ox and bail him out).

 

155. Ga Modimo ga go itsioe.

God's (position) is unknown.

To God's council chamber we have no key. (Dan.)

156. Ga montle matlho montle pelo.

Not her face, but her heart is comely.

She's better than she's bonny.

157. Ga na phokoje oa morokagangoa le ene.

No other jackal skin can be sewn to this one (i.e. a quarrelsome person).

A subtle slippery knave.

158. Ga nko go lekanoa gose matlho.

(Two) persons are never as equal as (a pair of) eyes.

Every shoe fits not every foot.

159. Ga nyala mosadi, o nyetse monna.

He has not married a woman; for she is (the equal of) a man.

Sexu foemina, ingenio vir. (L.)

160. Ga oa, o ribame ka mpa ea sebete.

He has not only fallen, but he has fallen flat on his belly.

He came out of the little end of the horn.

161. Ga re je di oelang.

Nothing that we eat digests.

Pap with a hatchet.

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

162. Gase goo lobelo, goo marapo a thata.

Not to the swift (the race is) but to the most enduring.

(a) The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong.
(b) Ce n'est pas tout de courier bien, il faut partir à temps. (F.)

163. Ga se koo, ke koana.

It is not there, but here.

You feel yourself an exile in the East; but in the West too it is exile; I know not where under the sun it is not exile.

164. Gase pitsa tlhatleoa pele, ke pitsa e beseledioang.

It is not the pot put-on-first, but the pot put-on-fire (that gets done).

The fittest will survive.

165. Do.

Do.

The first shall be last and the last shall be first.

166. Gase sepe re tla kopanela ko kobong ea kgomo.

It's nothing, we shall meet near the ox-hide  2  (at death).

Yet a little while and we shall all meet there.

167. Gase tlala tlhaola malata, ke marumo, ma-ja-magosana.

It is not hunger, the chooser of servants, but spears the slayers of princes.

This fell Sergeant, Death, is strict in his arrest.

168. Gatoe choshoane e kile ea roma tlou.

They say that an ant once made an errand-boy of an elephant.

Ich habe es öfters rühmen hören,
Ein Komodiant könnte einen Pfarrer lehren. (G.)

169. Ga u botlha, u coa meding.

You are not bitter but you come from the roots.

(a) What's bred in the bone comes out in the flesh.
(b) Filius istarum lacrymarum. (L.)

SECHUANA PROVERB

LITERAL TRANSLATION

EUROPEAN EQUIVALENT

170. Goana di matlabanyana, ma-thabisa digogo.

See: Digoana tsa basadi.

(a) A drunken man may soon be made to dance.
(b) Wine neither keeps secrets nor fulfils promises.

171. Goare go bisa' bitsa motho go bitse Modimo.

When man doesn't call, God does.

(a) Whom the hearts of men shut out straightway the heart of God takes in.
(b) Désire de Dieu et désire de l'homme sont deux. (F.)

172. Goare go shuioa go eloe ruri.

When men die they depart for ever.

There is a salve for every sore but Death.

173. Goa shoa motho go sale motho.

When a man dies a man remains.

(a) There's as good fish in the sea as ever came out of it.
(b) When nature removes a great man, people explore the horizon for a successor; but none comes and none will come. (Con.)

174. Go bapalela mo kgetsing e e lechoba.

To save one's earnings in a bottomless purse.

He has a hole under his nose that all his money runs into.

175. Go bua diphirimisi.

To talk nonsense.

Fumos vendera. (L.)

176. Go bua gase go dira.

To speak is not to act.

(a) Easy to say is hard to do.
(b) Le dire est autre chose quela faire. (F.)


Footnotes & References

#NoteDescription
1In olden times (without matches) housekeepers were always careful to keep a good log in the fireplace, and when some one allowed the cinders to burn to ashes, a child used to go to a neighbouring hut for a glowing ember to start the fire afresh.
2Primitive Bechuana coffins were made of hides.