Questions tagged [proverb-requests]

For questions that ask for an English-language proverb that would be appropriate to use in a particular context.

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2answers
111 views

How to say this proverb? [closed]

In Italian there's a religious proverb: Chi è senza peccato scagli la prima pietra Is it correct to translate it to the following: Who isn't without sin the first stone.
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2answers
164 views

What is the idiom or proverb or phrase for this “hard packing but loose knot”? [closed]

What is the idiom or proverb or phrase for this "hard packing but loose knot"? For example, you took hard preparation for the exam, but, didn't attend it.
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12answers
6k views

Any equivalent to this Persian proverb “The yellow dog is the jackal's brother”?

Suppose you have a new boss and your former boss was a vicious and dictator one. Now you are visiting the new boss for the first time. He seems to be a nice person to you, but one of your colleagues ...
7
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3answers
535 views

Idiom request for critisizing someone who ignores or overlooks their old things or friends, in an annoying manner, after having or finding new ones

I'm looking for and idiom, expression or proverb for criticizing (or describing) a situation in which someone doesn't pay attention to/ like their old things, friends, colleagues, hobbies, etc any ...
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2answers
2k views

English equivalent of this Telugu proverb [closed]

What English proverb can be matched to this Telugu proverb? There is no harm in lying 1000 times in order to perform a single successful marriage. This is a famous proverb in Southern India, ...
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6answers
8k views

Is there an English equivalent of the Hindi saying “sau chuhe maar billi haj ko chali”? (After killing/eating 100 mice, the cat goes on a pilgrimage)

In Hindi language, there is a prevalent saying: sau chuhe maar billi haj ko chali which, if directly translated into English, becomes After killing/eating 100 mice, the cat goes on a pilgrimage ...
20
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14answers
5k views

Idiom or proverb that implies “ the evidence contradicts what you claim”

Is there any idiom or proverb that means "the evidence contradicts what you claim"? There is a proverb in Persian that says: "Should/ shall we believe the rooster's tail or the fox's oaths to God?...
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9answers
1k views

Is there any equivalent for this Persian proverb “A lopsided load won't reach the destination”?

There is a proverb in Persian that literally means: "A lopsided load won't reach the (given) destination." It implies that "dishonesty, deviation from the right path, or injustice wouldn't have ...
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2answers
279 views

How to express a situation where someone puts others in a situation where others have to solve the problem

Is there any proverb to express a situation where someone put others, without asking approval in advance, in a situation where others have to solve the problem? He knows if he seeks for permission, ...
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22answers
6k views

Idiom request for recommending someone to end their toxic relationship/ friendship with somebody

​​Is there any idiom or proverb for recommending someone to end their relationship/ friendship/ partnership with somebody whose behaviors or actions seem toxic, harmful, and thus really intolerable? ...
21
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10answers
8k views

Idiom request for describing a situation in which someone give advantages to their enemy or opponent

I'm looking for an idiom or proverb that can be used for describing a situation in which someone's actions or behaviors are in favor of their opponents or enemies; in other words it seems that they ...
2
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2answers
875 views

What is the English equivalent to the Telugu proverb: “For cat, the rat is the witness”? [closed]

We use this proverb in this type of conversation: Dad: Did you read today? Son: Yes, Dad. Dad: Did my son read today? Mom: Yes, he did. Dad: For cat, the rat is the witness. ...
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5answers
746 views

Is there any English equivalent to the Portuguese proverb “days of plenty, nothing’s eve?”

Days of plenty, nothing’s eves (in Portuguese dias de muito, vésperas de nada) means your days of plenty are eves of days of nothing, i.e. you alternate between splashing out and hardship, usually ...
18
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11answers
3k views

Is there an English equivalent for this Tamil proverb - “A painting of a bottle gourd is worthless while preparing stew”?

This is an interesting expression that I came across very recently while reading a Tamil magazine. The literal meaning is that you can't cook the stew by just having a painting of a bottle gourd. ...
48
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18answers
12k views

English equivalent for the Persian proverb “The mountain just gave birth to a mouse”

I'm looking for an idiom or expression to describe a well-known person/ organization/ politician/ government whose achievements in a given situation are smaller than what they had claimed or promised ...
68
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21answers
14k views

Idiom criticizing a person who has unsolved problems but tries to give someone advice about them

Is there an idiom or expression that refers to a person who has some unsolved problems and tries to give some pieces of advice to, or guide, others for solving the same problems? We Iranians have a ...
6
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7answers
642 views

Expression for internal struggle

In German language, there is the beautiful expression "seinen inneren Schweinehund überwinden", which amounts to "to overcome one's inner pig-dog", and vividly describes the feeling of surpassing the ...
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16answers
5k views

English equivalent to the Indian saying “Like a thief being stung by a scorpion”

The title is the literal translation of a south Indian proverb, used to describe situations where a person who's already guilty will be proven so, if he voices himself against something. Examples: ...
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3answers
851 views

Is there any English proverb parallel to any of these Persian proverbs?

There is a Persian proverb, which I would translate it as follow: Whenever you catch a fish is fresh. Which is often used to suggest that it is never too late to do the right thing.
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3answers
3k views

Proverb meaning “to give something to somebody who does not recognize its value”

Can you please tell me an English proverb which means "to give something to somebody who does not recognize the value of that thing"?
31
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16answers
4k views

Is there any equivalent to this Persian proverb? “A bad or faulty item should inevitably be kept by its owner”

We use a proverb that implies "A bad property (i.e., a thing belonging to someone) or item should inevitably be tolerated/kept by its owner" when we want to say "This bad item won't be accepted by ...
3
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3answers
751 views

Idiom for all at once or none at all

I'm looking for a creative and relatively familiar idiom to describe something that needs to be handled a specific way because an activity comes in waves. Specifically I'm looking to describe ...
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13answers
3k views

Things will change: idiom or proverb

Is there an idiom or maybe a proverb stating that things will not be the same or as you want, forever. For example when telling someone that they might be in a good state or status now, but they will ...
3
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4answers
453 views

Proverb: quit a habit

What proverb in English means that people get rid of old habits hard? (if there are any)
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3answers
1k views

Proverb about wealth and connectedness/friends [closed]

I remember reading somewhere a proverb. I don't remember exactly how it went. I also vaguely remember it being African, but I'm probably wrong. In a paraphrased form (in my head) it is: "The wealthy ...
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3answers
2k views
2
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3answers
915 views

Describing a group consisting of groups of people

Is there a word/phrase to describe the charateristic of a group of people being composed of small and independent groups of people? In Chinese, we would say that a group has a lot of "小團體", which ...
6
votes
6answers
4k views

Is there a proverb for “if there's a simple solution for solving a problem don't choose a more complicated one”? [duplicate]

Is there an idiom/ phrase/ expression or proverb that conveys this meaning: "As long as there is a more simple solution for solving a problem don't choose a more complicated one." or: "when you can ...
0
votes
1answer
552 views

“You not only couldn't fix it but even damaged it more!” [duplicate]

Suppose you want to fix your brother's bicycle, but this time it seems that you cannot do it and at the end of your work, you find that you have caused an extra damage to that bicycle, too! :) We ...
8
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21answers
8k views

When someone ruins all the good they have ever done!

Suppose you have a nice and kind friend who helps you whenever possible, but sometimes they say something to you so angrily and sarcastically that you forget about all their kindness and help, because ...
1
vote
2answers
503 views

Is there a saying or proverb for “an inventor being killed by his own invention”?

There is long list of inventors whose death was somehow related to the product, process or procedure they invented. To cite just a few, Marie Curie (1867–1934) invented the process to isolate ...
10
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15answers
3k views

“He is an opportunist, there's no need to give him more excuses or opportunities!”

We have a saying in my country: He doesn't need music to start dancing. He is already dancing without music! Which figuratively means: He doesn't need any special, real, or necessary excuses for ...
3
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6answers
11k views

Saying meaning “Don't speak unless you can improve silence”

Is there an English equivalent to this familiar saying used in India: Don't speak unless you can improve silence. The saying loosely means it is better to be silent than prattle on about something....
21
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20answers
15k views

What's an expression for a cunningly-fake friend?

I'd like to warn somebody of one of their harmful managers, or even a so-called fake friend, so I say it like this: Don't trust him! He is nothing but a cunning person who is trying to harm you/put ...
45
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29answers
10k views

Is there an English equivalent to the Persian saying “Now that it's my turn, the sky fell down”?

Suppose there are many people standing in a line to receive an expensive item as a free gift, and everyone receives it except for the last person in the line. The last one is told, "Sorry, the gifts ...
10
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4answers
862 views

Idiom or proverb request for describing or criticising a situation in which the lowliest dare mock a mightiest who has become old

I am looking for an idiom or proverb that can be used in situations which the lowliest dare mock a mightiest because of his/her age and thus considering him/her enfeebled. There is proverb in Persian ...
6
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7answers
2k views

Is there any proverb or idiom that conveys “the world is bound to no man”?

Is there any proverb or idiom that conveys this meaning:" Don't rely on this world, since it is not loyal to man forever, today it is in your hand, tomorrow in mine" (actually it is a Persian saying ...
7
votes
8answers
4k views

English equivalent of saying “Don’t get in between the nail and the flesh”?

The saying “Don’t get in between the nail and the flesh” from my own language is typically addressed to someone who likes to provide unsolicited help by barging in on a heated conversation between two ...
8
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12answers
38k views

Idiom for the phrase “someone who gets what he deserved”

Is there an idiom for someone who gets what he deserved? Like someone receiving punishment for his evil deeds or someone getting awarded for his good deeds?