A selection of African Proverbs - Part ll

What you help a child to love can be more important than what you help them to learn.

He who runs after good fortune runs away from peace.

A single bracelet does not jingle.

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

Even the best dancer on the stage must retire sometime.

Gold should be sold to the one who knows the value of it.

He who loves the vase loves also what is inside.

Rising early makes the road short.

To get lost is to learn the way.

What you learn is what you die with.

The big cobra that blocks the path is going his own way, yet people run away when they see him.

Patience can cook stone.

It is not by saying, “Honey, honey” that sweetness will come into your mouth.

The one-eyed man does not thank God until he sees a blind man.

If you want the rain, you must also accept the mud.

If you offend, ask for pardon; if offended forgive.

Don’t set sail using someone else’s star.

Restless feet may walk into a snake pit.

A man who pays respect to the great paves the way for his own greatness.

He who does not know one thing knows another.

When a king has good counsellors, his reign is peaceful.

Life is like a mist or a shadow; it quickly passes by.

Wherever a man goes to dwell, his character goes with him.

Milk and honey have different colour, but they share the same house peacefully.

When a king reigns, it is thanks to the people; when a river sings, it is thanks to the stones.

By trying often, the monkey learns to jump from the tree. Without a leader, black ants are confused.

Copying everyone else all the time, the monkey one day cut his throat.

The key to a healthy body is a good head.

The words of the elders become sweet someday.

A little rain each day will fill the rivers to overflowing.

A tree cannot stand without roots.

Little by little grow the bananas.

No matter how full the river, it still wants to grow.

When the shepherd comes home in peace, the milk is sweet.

If we put a hammer in every person’s hand, could they all become blacksmiths?

When you follow in the path of your father, you learn to walk like him.

An empty pot makes the loudest noise.

There’s no rainy season without mosquitoes.

Advice is a stranger; if he’s welcome he stays for the night; if not, he leaves the same day.

A snake that you can see does not bite.

No tattoo is made without blood.

If you do not have patience you cannot make beer.

Little by little the bird builds its nest.

The chameleon changes colour to match the earth, the earth doesn’t change colour to match the chameleon.

Wisdom does not come overnight.