Preface

TLHAKA EA NTLHA

Much of the oral native philosophy is too plain and therefore too frank for civilised ears. This is particularly true in regard to some of the proverbs relating to the relation between men and women. In this collection, sayings of that class are carefully omitted. This omission is not inconsistent with primitive Sechuana custom. Old people never mentioned such sayings in the presence of youth or of uncircumcised adults, whom they always classed with the children.

Matsetseleko a puo ea Secoana a totobetse bobe. Maele a Secoana a mangoe – bogolo a a umakang kabalano ea banna le basadi – a ka seleka tsebe tsa batho ba ba tlhabologileng. Mo koalong lo ke tlhotlhile diane tsa mothale oo cotlhe ka di tlogela. Phefero ee ntseng jalo ga ea fapaana gope le mokgoa oa Secoana. Bagologolo ba ne ba sa umake puo tse di ntseng jalo fa pele ga batho ba ba nana le bagolo ba ba dumetseng, gonne bakapi ba ne ba baleloa le banyana.

It is the author's belief that had these aphorisms been collected thirty years ago, this book could have been enlarged to nearly three times its size. With the spread of European speech and thought in South Africa, these primitive saws are fast being forgotten, and in order to arrest this process, the author appeals to all students of Sechuana to:

Ke dumela gore fa diane tse di ne tsa phuthoa tsa koaloa ka nako ea ga General Warren, ekabo gompieno re nale buka ea diane dile 2,000. Faesale puo le megapolo ea Sekgooa e fetlhelela le lefatshe ja rona, melao e, ea matlhale a Secoana a bogologolo, e ntse e iketla e lebalega ka monokela. Ke shone se ke lopang baitsi ba Secoana ba ba santseng bale teng gore ba thuse:

  1. communicate to him any Sechuana proverbs known to them which are not included in this book;

  2. point out errors (if any) in the translations, or wrong readings in the originals; and
  1. Ba nthomele diane dingoe tsa Secoana tse ba di itseng, tse di seong mo bukeng e; le bachomi

  2. Ba mpolelele diphosho dingoe tse ke di irileng mo phetolong, le mo thulaganyong ea diane; ba ba
page ix
  1. draw his attention to any European proverbs which would be better equivalents to the corresponding Sechuana proverbs given in this book.
  1. Ba mpolelele diane dingoe tsa Sekgooa tse ba bonang di dumalana le tsa Secoana go gaisa tse ke di koadileng. Eo o dirang jalo o tla bo a thusitse Becoana gore ba se latlhegeloe ke se-ga-bone.

When it is borne in mind that I wrote the book in England, where there was no one versed in the language to whom I could go for advice, this request will I hope be found reasonable.

Fa babadi ba ka eleleloa gore ke koadile koalo lo ko Enyelane kele nosi, go sena moitsi ope oa Secoana eo ke ne nka mmotsa, ba tla fitlhela gore topo eame e lebanye.

That there are many more unrecorded proverbs I have no doubt. For it will be observed that many of the maxims in this collection are of pastoral origin and refer to all kinds of game; yet (with the exception of the allegorical reference to the buffalo in No. 490) I cannot recall any proverbs referring to the Nare (Buffalo), the Phofu (Eland), the Kukama (Oryx) and the Tshephe (Springbok). The meat of these animals in the early days was a “feast of the gods” among the Bechuana, who had various ingenious ways of preparing it.

The skin of the last-named antelope was used for carrying babies on the backs of their mothers or their nurse-maids, and also as mats or as grain bags. The hides of the other three beasts were applied to several domestic uses, including mats, milk-sacks, sandals, whips, shields, ropes, etc., so that they were indispensable in the indoor and outdoor activities of the Bechuana.

Ga ke belaele gore go sa nale diane dile dintsi tse di sa koaloang. Gonne, lefa diane tse ke di phuthileng bogolo ele tsa lenaga, ebile di atisa go baka dipholofolo tsa methale eotlhe, ga ke gakologeloe seane sepe se se umakang pholofolo tse nne tse di jegang bobe ko Bucoana, ebong, Nare, le Phohu, le Kukama, le Tshephe. Nama ea pholofolo tse nne tse ene etlotliloe thata ke Becoana, ba e apaea ka bocoerere jo bo golo. Matlalo a tshepe a ne a dirisioa thata ke bagologolo, a ira kgetse tsa mabele, a ira dithari a belega bana, a aparoa a aloa. Matlalo a seokomana (kukama) le dioka tse pedi (nare le phohu) a ne a ira diphate, makuka, ditlhako, dime, dithebe, dikgole, le eng le eng, tse di tlhokegang segolo mo tirong cotlhe tsa Secoana tsa loloapa le tsa lentle.

page x

The Phofu, in addition, has a huge lump of kidney fat for which Bechuana herbalists paid a very high price, using the suet for mixing medicine.

Ebile matlhaname a phohu a ne a rekoa ka tlhoatlhoa e kgolo ke ngaka tsa Secoana di ira dipheko le melemo ka one.

These proverbs pay much attention to less useful game (vide Nos. 71-77, also 580-590 and 643-651 etc.) and it seems incredible that such useful animals of other days as the above-named four could have entirely escaped proverbial notice.

Ere ncoa pholofolo tse di tiro potlana di bakoa thata ke maele a Secoana (Bona temana 71-77 le 580-590 le 643-651) go ka gakgamatsa thata fa re ka fitlhela pholofolo tse di maatlametlo a kana ka a tse nne tse, di falotse dipako tsa baroki le bathei ba diane. Fa mmadi mongoe a itse maele mangoe a go nna jalo ka thusa a bolelela morulaganyi.

Any information on the subject will be gratefully received by the author.

Kgaritlhang he, lo kganarithe, re bolokeng se-ga-rona se ea ea.

In searching for equivalents I have profitably consulted the following works, viz.,─

Mo thlotlhomishong ea Diane tsa Sekgooa tse di dumalanang le tsa rona ke thusicoe thata ke buka tse─

National Proverbs (Palmer): England and France;
Wood's Dictionary of Quotations;
Barten's Collection of English and German Proverbs;
Ruebenkampf's 1,200 der gebräuchlichsten Französischen Sprichwörter.
Hazlitt's English Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases;
Harbottle's Dictionary of Latin Quotations;
Wander's Deutsches Sprichwörter-Lexikon; and
The British Empire Universities Modern English Illustrated Dictionary.

 

The result will I hope serve the additional purpose of placing a polyglot collection in the hands of native readers in South Africa.

Ke gopola maungo a tlhotlhomisho eaka a tla naea babadi ba Becoana setlhopha se sentle sa diane tsa merafe-rafe.

page xi

Continental equivalents are distinguished from English quotations by a (D) for Dutch, (Dan) for Danish, (F) for French, (G) for German, (I) for Italian, (L) for Latin, (P) for Portuguese, (Sp) for Spanish and (X) for Scriptural quotations. Those which express ideas directly opposite to the Sechuana ones are marked (Con.).

Maele a merafe e mengoe a farologancoe mo go a Senyesemane jaana: (D) Sebsuru, (Dan) se-Dane, (F) se-Fora, (G) se-Doistere, (I) se-Taliane, (L) se-Lateine lefa re kare se-Roma, (P) se-Potokisi saga Monna-Motapa, (Sp) se-Pinola, (X) tsa Beibele. Diane tse ekete di ganetsa tsa Secoana dikailoe jana (Con.).

page xii

Preface

TLHAKA EA NTLHA

Much of the oral native philosophy is too plain and therefore too frank for civilised ears. This is particularly true in regard to some of the proverbs relating to the relation between men and women. In this collection, sayings of that class are carefully omitted. This omission is not inconsistent with primitive Sechuana custom. Old people never mentioned such sayings in the presence of youth or of uncircumcised adults, whom they always classed with the children.

Matsetseleko a puo ea Secoana a totobetse bobe. Maele a Secoana a mangoe – bogolo a a umakang kabalano ea banna le basadi – a ka seleka tsebe tsa batho ba ba tlhabologileng. Mo koalong lo ke tlhotlhile diane tsa mothale oo cotlhe ka di tlogela. Phefero ee ntseng jalo ga ea fapaana gope le mokgoa oa Secoana. Bagologolo ba ne ba sa umake puo tse di ntseng jalo fa pele ga batho ba ba nana le bagolo ba ba dumetseng, gonne bakapi ba ne ba baleloa le banyana.

It is the author's belief that had these aphorisms been collected thirty years ago, this book could have been enlarged to nearly three times its size. With the spread of European speech and thought in South Africa, these primitive saws are fast being forgotten, and in order to arrest this process, the author appeals to all students of Sechuana to:

Ke dumela gore fa diane tse di ne tsa phuthoa tsa koaloa ka nako ea ga General Warren, ekabo gompieno re nale buka ea diane dile 2,000. Faesale puo le megapolo ea Sekgooa e fetlhelela le lefatshe ja rona, melao e, ea matlhale a Secoana a bogologolo, e ntse e iketla e lebalega ka monokela. Ke shone se ke lopang baitsi ba Secoana ba ba santseng bale teng gore ba thuse:

  1. communicate to him any Sechuana proverbs known to them which are not included in this book;

  2. point out errors (if any) in the translations, or wrong readings in the originals; and
  1. Ba nthomele diane dingoe tsa Secoana tse ba di itseng, tse di seong mo bukeng e; le bachomi

  2. Ba mpolelele diphosho dingoe tse ke di irileng mo phetolong, le mo thulaganyong ea diane; ba ba
  1. draw his attention to any European proverbs which would be better equivalents to the corresponding Sechuana proverbs given in this book.
  1. Ba mpolelele diane dingoe tsa Sekgooa tse ba bonang di dumalana le tsa Secoana go gaisa tse ke di koadileng. Eo o dirang jalo o tla bo a thusitse Becoana gore ba se latlhegeloe ke se-ga-bone.

When it is borne in mind that I wrote the book in England, where there was no one versed in the language to whom I could go for advice, this request will I hope be found reasonable.

Fa babadi ba ka eleleloa gore ke koadile koalo lo ko Enyelane kele nosi, go sena moitsi ope oa Secoana eo ke ne nka mmotsa, ba tla fitlhela gore topo eame e lebanye.

That there are many more unrecorded proverbs I have no doubt. For it will be observed that many of the maxims in this collection are of pastoral origin and refer to all kinds of game; yet (with the exception of the allegorical reference to the buffalo in No. 490) I cannot recall any proverbs referring to the Nare (Buffalo), the Phofu (Eland), the Kukama (Oryx) and the Tshephe (Springbok). The meat of these animals in the early days was a “feast of the gods” among the Bechuana, who had various ingenious ways of preparing it.

The skin of the last-named antelope was used for carrying babies on the backs of their mothers or their nurse-maids, and also as mats or as grain bags. The hides of the other three beasts were applied to several domestic uses, including mats, milk-sacks, sandals, whips, shields, ropes, etc., so that they were indispensable in the indoor and outdoor activities of the Bechuana.

Ga ke belaele gore go sa nale diane dile dintsi tse di sa koaloang. Gonne, lefa diane tse ke di phuthileng bogolo ele tsa lenaga, ebile di atisa go baka dipholofolo tsa methale eotlhe, ga ke gakologeloe seane sepe se se umakang pholofolo tse nne tse di jegang bobe ko Bucoana, ebong, Nare, le Phohu, le Kukama, le Tshephe. Nama ea pholofolo tse nne tse ene etlotliloe thata ke Becoana, ba e apaea ka bocoerere jo bo golo. Matlalo a tshepe a ne a dirisioa thata ke bagologolo, a ira kgetse tsa mabele, a ira dithari a belega bana, a aparoa a aloa. Matlalo a seokomana (kukama) le dioka tse pedi (nare le phohu) a ne a ira diphate, makuka, ditlhako, dime, dithebe, dikgole, le eng le eng, tse di tlhokegang segolo mo tirong cotlhe tsa Secoana tsa loloapa le tsa lentle.

The Phofu, in addition, has a huge lump of kidney fat for which Bechuana herbalists paid a very high price, using the suet for mixing medicine.

Ebile matlhaname a phohu a ne a rekoa ka tlhoatlhoa e kgolo ke ngaka tsa Secoana di ira dipheko le melemo ka one.

These proverbs pay much attention to less useful game (vide Nos. 71-77, also 580-590 and 643-651 etc.) and it seems incredible that such useful animals of other days as the above-named four could have entirely escaped proverbial notice.

Ere ncoa pholofolo tse di tiro potlana di bakoa thata ke maele a Secoana (Bona temana 71-77 le 580-590 le 643-651) go ka gakgamatsa thata fa re ka fitlhela pholofolo tse di maatlametlo a kana ka a tse nne tse, di falotse dipako tsa baroki le bathei ba diane. Fa mmadi mongoe a itse maele mangoe a go nna jalo ka thusa a bolelela morulaganyi.

Any information on the subject will be gratefully received by the author.

Kgaritlhang he, lo kganarithe, re bolokeng se-ga-rona se ea ea.

In searching for equivalents I have profitably consulted the following works, viz.,─

Mo thlotlhomishong ea Diane tsa Sekgooa tse di dumalanang le tsa rona ke thusicoe thata ke buka tse─

National Proverbs (Palmer): England and France;
Wood's Dictionary of Quotations;
Barten's Collection of English and German Proverbs;
Ruebenkampf's 1,200 der gebräuchlichsten Französischen Sprichwörter.
Hazlitt's English Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases;
Harbottle's Dictionary of Latin Quotations;
Wander's Deutsches Sprichwörter-Lexikon; and
The British Empire Universities Modern English Illustrated Dictionary.

 

The result will I hope serve the additional purpose of placing a polyglot collection in the hands of native readers in South Africa.

Ke gopola maungo a tlhotlhomisho eaka a tla naea babadi ba Becoana setlhopha se sentle sa diane tsa merafe-rafe.

Continental equivalents are distinguished from English quotations by a (D) for Dutch, (Dan) for Danish, (F) for French, (G) for German, (I) for Italian, (L) for Latin, (P) for Portuguese, (Sp) for Spanish and (X) for Scriptural quotations. Those which express ideas directly opposite to the Sechuana ones are marked (Con.).

Maele a merafe e mengoe a farologancoe mo go a Senyesemane jaana: (D) Sebsuru, (Dan) se-Dane, (F) se-Fora, (G) se-Doistere, (I) se-Taliane, (L) se-Lateine lefa re kare se-Roma, (P) se-Potokisi saga Monna-Motapa, (Sp) se-Pinola, (X) tsa Beibele. Diane tse ekete di ganetsa tsa Secoana dikailoe jana (Con.).