45

As Marc pointed out in his answer, there is an Australian version, although his wording is much more proper than I would expect from us Aussies. I have always heard it expressed as "Tall poppies get cut short". Also, check out Tall Poppy Syndrome.


38

I know the questioner wanted proverbs that value conformity, but this proverb comes to mind immediately: The squeaky wheel gets the grease It has the exact opposite meaning to the proverb in the question, but the sentiment is similar: it describes what happens to something (or someone) that draws attention to itself (himself). If the questioner is ...


37

I heard this phrase used, I think by a Korean, in a documentary called BBoy Planet. There, it was translated as "The nail that sticks out gets hammered down", which seems to carry the meaning better into English. English phrases with similar connotations might include... Keep your head down. Don't stick your neck out. As you pointed out, Western culture ...


25

Though made popular by a song in the ’90s the expression appears to have originated a few decades earlier and it was probably just what bartenders used to say to clients who wanted to stay after closing time as the following source suggests: You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here” is what a bar manager might say to his last remaining ...


21

Spoon feeding is used both idiomatically and literally. It is literally feeding someone (typically a baby) with a spoon by placing food on the spoon and then putting the spoon in the recipient's mouth until they remove the food using their tongue or lips. The only action required by the person being spoon-fed is to close the lips after the spoon has been ...


20

Denis Thatcher, husband of the late Margaret Thatcher, kept a notably low profile. When asked about it, he would sometimes say: It's the whale that spouts that gets harpooned. When people are, for example, starting a new job, they are often advised to: Keep your head down and your mouth shut. If somebody in an institution intends to oppress you, ...


18

An Australian friend used to say "When a blade of grass is taller than the rest, we cut it down to size."


17

The statement "Who cares?" is often seen as extremely rude and even arrogant. Let's look at a more specific case: consider George W. Bush's response to journalist Bill Hangley at a press event in 2001: Because I had serious misgivings about the president’s performance to that point, my own involvement in the whole operation had left me feeling a bit like ...


13

To let oneself go means to fail to maintain an attractive physical appearance. For the aspects that are physical, and the general "giving up" attitude, "she let herself go" fits quite nicely.


12

From Wikipedia: In German, Gesundheit ([to your] "Health") is said after a sneeze. This is sometimes used in the United States. The expression arrived in America with early German immigrants, such as the Pennsylvania Dutch, and doubtless passed into local English usage in areas with substantial German-speaking populations.1 The expression is first ...


12

I think this most closely matches the saying "The tallest poppy gets cut down"


12

The usage is Commander-in-Soy, which is a play on words on the president's role as Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces. Note that Soy is capitalized in this usage. One soy product is actually called "commander": It means that Trump displayed weak, "feminine" characteristics by backing down on his pledge not to end the shutdown without wall funding. ...


12

I looked up this term in Japanese Wikipedia, which says: 干物女とは恋愛を放棄している、様々な事を面倒臭がり適当に済ませてしまう女性のこと。 If I'm getting the sense right, it means, roughly, "a woman who has abandoned love, and finds the various details of her life bothersome and handles them in a lazy or careless manner." The article goes on to say that the term 干物女 comes from a manga series ...


11

There is one phrase that I've heard as a counterpart to toryan's suggestion: The squeaky wheel gets replaced. It's usually used to as a direct opposition to the more common phrase as a cautionary reminder that while complaining about a problem can solve the problem, there are risks involved raising that complaint as well. I believe it has essentially the ...


10

As ShreevatsaR said, it’s perfectly straightforward: for many speakers girl still means (or at least strongly connotes) a female child or at most a young woman, and for those speakers a woman who is likely to be dating a man in his late 60s simply isn’t a girl. And if she isn’t (in their terms) a girl, it’s entirely understandable that she can’t be a ...


10

I hear this a lot in the US in the context of education. It is generally said negatively (teachers spoon-feed the answers that will get kids past the state exams, etc). The opposite of spoon-feeding is teaching people to work (or think, in this case) for themselves.


10

This proverb immediatly makes me think of the English phrase: When in Rome, do as the Romans do. This conveys a sense of conformism, though primarily aimed at foreigners in an alien culture. It may exist in other European languages too, I wouldn't know.


10

Mileage can certainly be used without having to be associated with literal miles. Freedictionary defines it as an informal noun, meaning usefulness, or how much service something has provided, or may provide. Cambridge dictionaries defines it as an advantage that can be obtained from a situation A person may get good mileage out of a situation, ...


9

Unfortunately, the best answer to your question is that, there is no single word or phrase for the kind of person defined by this idiom, which includes the kind of stereotypical behavior you describe. This is possibly due to cultural differences in what is expected of women, and partly due to the fact that it represents a kind of sexist pejorative commonly ...


8

There is no direct equivalent phrase, in the sense that the exact list of qualities would not be associated with an English phrase. The connotation is also tricky - a connotative match would have to be both negative and reclaimed by some of these women. It is exceptionally unlikely that you'll find a denotative and connotative match to something so specific. ...


7

It is commonly used in everyday conversation, and in most uses it is disrespectful to somebody (not necessarily the person spoken to).


7

We find it in the Wycliffe bible. I quote here from the 1395: and weren lastynge stabli in the teching of the apostlis, and in comynyng of the breking of breed, in preieris (Acts 2:42 Wycliffe) And ech dai thei dwelliden stabli with o wille in the temple, and braken breed aboute housis, and token mete with ful out ioye and symplenesse of herte, (Acts ...


7

According to etymonline.com: gesundheit 1914, from Ger. Gesundheit, lit. "health!" Also in toast auf ihre Gesundheit "to your health" (see sound (adj.)). Lith. aciu, echoic of the sound of a sneeze, has come to mean "good luck, God bless you." See also God. The United States has a large population of German immigrants and heritage speakers. Take that ...


7

There may be no exact equivalent, but one proverb which is not too distant from yours is The bigger they are, the harder they fall. which means that exceptional people suffer exceptionally when they fail.1


7

Most English proverbs that advocate conformity don't dwell on the negative effects of nonconformity. Instead they run along the lines of Go along to get along. and One must howl with the wolves. and Don't make waves. But the benefits of conformity are perhaps of best expressed in this one (from the Facts on File Dictionary of Proverbs): Do ...


7

Want in this proverb = need or lack. So, the meaning is that if you don't waste X, you can avoid lacking or needing X. It is advising against waste because you might want it in the future. It was allegedly first recorded in 1772 but had an earlier willful waste makes woeful want version recorded in 1576.


7

The principal difference will be that they belong to quite different era and etymology. 'Seventh heaven' is the most exalted level of heaven, esp. the highest and most holy or blessed of the hierarchical series of heavens described in Jewish and Islamic theology According to the Talmudic Hagigah 12b, the place where God dwells over the angels, the souls of ...


6

The liberal arts, artes liberales, were meant as a method of acquiring qualities that distinguish a free (lat. liber) man from a slave through upbringing and education. They go back to early European history, to ancient Rome and Greece. Even though I am not a native speaker of Japanese, the 教 in 教養 (kyoyo) seems to stand for education (教える) and 養 (養う) for ...


6

One more piece of Western culture to compare would be the tale of Daedalus and Icarus, with the (not particularly well known or often repeated - though the story itself is somewhat popular) cautionary description of "wings cast toward the sun". The chief difference in the advice is the focus on pride and the punishment it is said to naturally bring, and ...


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