Classification ofproverbs


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Classification ofproverbs

  1. 1. Classification of ProverbsTranslating proverbs can be complex and problematic. I found7 ways to translate proverbs. They are as follows.1. Translated ProverbsThese proverbs have been literally translated into the targetlanguage and have become proverbs in the target language. All roads lead to Rome ‫رو‬ ‫ل ا طرق ؤدي إ‬ Cherchez la femme ‫ا ث ن ا رأة‬ Bad news travels fast ‫ر‬ ‫ل‬ ‫را‬ ‫ا‬ Crocodile tears ( ‫)د وع ا‬ The end justifies the means ( ‫رر ا و‬ ‫)ا‬ The first blow is half the battle ‫فا ر‬ ‫ھ‬ ‫ر ا و‬ ‫ا‬ First impressions are most lasting (‫دوم‬ ‫تا و‬ ‫)ا ط‬ Don’t cry over spilt milk (‫وب‬ ‫ا نا‬ ‫ك‬ )2. Proverbs Known in English in the target languageThese proverbs are transferred into the target language as is(i.e. without translation) Business is business ‫تا‬ ‫لا ل نا‬ ‫د ن‬3. Has an Exact EquivalentThere are equivalent vocabulary, structure and meaning. Appearances are deceptive ‫ا ظ ھر دا‬
  2. 2. All that glitters is not gold ( ‫ذھ‬ ‫ل‬ ) All truth is not always to be told (‫ل‬ ‫م‬ ‫ل‬ ) ‫رح ل ا‬ ‫أن‬ ‫دا‬ Astrologers lie, even if they tell the truth (‫د وا‬ ‫ون و و‬ ‫) ذب ا‬ Better a wise enemy than a foolish friend (‫ھل‬ ‫دق‬ ‫ر ن‬ ‫ل‬ ‫) دو‬ A drowning man will clutch at a straw (‫ق ود ش‬ ‫)ا ر ق‬ Defer not till tomorrow what may be done today (‫ا د‬ ‫ل ا وم إ‬ ‫ؤ ل‬ ) Fire begins with little sparks (‫ر ا رر‬ ‫) ظم ا ر ن‬4. Has a Close EquivalentThere is a slight change in the vocabulary or structure used butthe meaning is the same. An accidental meeting may be better than a fixed date (‫د‬ ‫ر نأف‬ ‫د‬ ‫)رب‬ A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush (‫ا رة‬ ‫رة‬ ‫ر ن‬ ‫ا د‬ ‫ور‬ ) Actions speak louder than words (‫ن ا وال‬ ‫لأ‬ ‫وت ا وال )ا‬ ‫ن‬ ‫لأ‬ ‫وت ا‬ All covet, all lose ( ‫ل‬ ‫ء )ا ط‬ ‫ر ل‬ ‫ء‬ ‫ل‬ ‫نط‬ All’s well that ends well ( ‫وا‬ ‫)ا ور‬ The apples on the other side of the wall are sweetest (‫م ل‬ ‫)ا رء واق إ‬ ‫ا ران أ‬ ‫د‬ ‫ا ح‬ Birds of a feather flock together ( ‫أ‬ ‫)ا ط ور‬ Borrow makes sorrow (‫) رة ا د ن ورث ا م‬ Care killed a cat (‫ل‬ ‫را‬ ‫ا م ل ا ط ) رة ا م‬ A cat has nine lives (‫أرواح‬ ‫)ا ط‬ Blood is thicker than water
  3. 3. (‫ر ء‬ ‫ن ا ء )ا دم‬ ‫ا دم أ د‬ A contented mind is a perpetual feast ( ‫ز‬ ‫)ا‬ The crow thinks her own birds fairest (‫زال‬ ‫نأ‬ ‫ظن ا راب أن أو ده ھم أ ل ا ط ور )ا رد‬ A dog’s tail is always crooked ‫وج‬ ‫ذ ل ا ب دا‬ Diamond cut diamond (‫ل ا د د إ ا د د‬ ) Divide and rule (‫د‬ ‫) رّق‬ Do as you would be done by ( ‫وك‬ ‫ب أن‬ ‫لا س‬ ) Don’t wash your dirty linen in public ( ‫ا‬ ‫ك ا ذر‬ ‫ر‬ ) Familiarity breeds contempt ( ‫زلا‬ ‫) دة ا‬ Forbidden fruit is sweetest (‫وع ر وب‬ ‫)ل‬ ‫أ‬ ‫و‬ ‫ا‬ ‫ا‬ A friend in need is a friend indeed (‫د ق و ت ا ق‬ ‫)ا‬ ‫دقا‬ ‫د ق و ت ا دة ھو ا‬ ‫ا‬ A friend is never known till needed (‫د ا دة ) د ا دا د رف ا وان‬ ‫دقإ‬ ‫رف ا‬ A good book is a great friend (‫ب‬ ‫از ن‬ ‫س‬ ‫د ق ظ م )و ر‬ ‫با د‬ ‫ا‬ Haste brings regret, patience brings safety ( ‫ا دا‬ ‫ا‬ ‫و‬ ‫ا‬ ‫ا‬ ) He is unworthy to live, who lives only for himself (‫ط‬ ‫ش‬ ‫ق أن و د ن‬ ‫) ا‬ He laughs best who laughs last (‫ك أ را‬ ‫را ن‬ ‫ك‬ )5. Has a Distant EquivalentOnly one part of the proverb is found in the target language. Admonish your friends in private, praise them in public ( ‫ا‬ ‫ر ، أو ا‬ ‫نا‬ ‫ا ر وا د م ا ن )ا‬ ‫أ د ءك‬ ‫ا‬ Comparisons are odious ‫ر ظم‬ ‫ا‬ Constant dripping wears away the stone
  4. 4. (‫ل‬ ‫ر )طول ا ل دم ا‬ ‫ذبا‬ ‫طرات ا ء ا دا‬ Every family has a skeleton in the cupboard (‫ل أ رة ر د ن )ا وت أ رار‬ Everything has its proper time and place (‫ل‬ ‫م‬ ‫ب) ل‬ ‫ن‬ ‫ءوتو‬ ‫ل‬ Good management is better than good income ( ‫ر )ا د ر ف ا‬ ‫ل ناد ل ا‬ ‫نا د رأ‬ A good tongue is a good weapon (‫ن‬ ‫وة ا‬ ‫ن‬ ‫ا‬ )‫د‬ ‫ح‬ ‫نا د‬ ‫ا‬ The greatest wealth is contentment with little (‫ا س‬ ‫ل )ا‬ ‫أ ظم روة ھ ا ر‬ Habit ever remains ( ‫ب‬ ‫ء‬ ‫أ دا ) ن ب‬ ‫دا‬ ‫ا دة‬ Hanging and wiving go by destiny (‫ب‬ ‫و‬ ‫ء )ا زواج‬ ‫ا ق وا زواج ن أ ور ا‬ Haste makes waste ( ‫ا دا‬ ‫ا‬ ) He gives twice who gives quickly ( ‫) را ر‬ ‫ر‬ ‫أ طك ر ن نأ طك‬6. Can be Literally TranslatedThese proverbs can be safely translated into the targetlanguage and the meaning is still understood. Absence makes the heart grow fonder ‫ا د زدا ب و‬ Accidents will happen in the best-regulated families ‫ت‬ ‫نا‬ ‫أ‬ ‫ا وادث‬ ‫د‬ Advice when most needed is least heeded ‫إ‬ ‫أ سا‬ ‫ون‬ ‫د‬ ‫نا‬ ‫ھل ا‬ An apple a day keeps the doctor away ‫ك اط ب‬ ‫د‬ ‫ل وم‬ Beauty is in the eye of the beholder ‫ن ن راه‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ا‬ Better bend than break (‫ر‬ ‫رو‬ ‫ن رط‬ )‫ر‬ ‫ل ن أن‬ ‫أ‬ ‫ن‬ Accidents will happen in the best-regulated families ‫ت‬ ‫نا‬ ‫أ‬ ‫ا وادث‬ ‫د‬
  5. 5. Charity begins at home (‫روف‬ ‫ت )ا ر ون أو‬ ‫ن دأ‬ ‫ا‬ Clothes do not make the man ‫ار ل‬ ‫س‬ ‫ا‬ Coming events cast their shadows before ‫ظ‬ ‫داث ا د‬ ‫ا‬ Don’t put all your eggs in one basket ‫وا دة‬ ‫لا ض‬ Gluttony kills more than the sword ‫لأ ر نا ف‬ ‫ا راھ‬7. Cannot be Literally TranslatedIf you translate these proverbs literally the meaning will be lost. Every cloud has a silver lining ( ‫ر‬ ‫أز‬ ‫ء )ا دي‬ ‫وداء ط‬ ‫ل‬ Beauty is but skin deep ‫ل ا طن‬ ‫ھو‬ ‫لا‬ ‫ا‬ Call a spade a spade ‫ء‬ ‫ما‬ Between two stools you fall to the ground ( ‫ن ر‬ ‫ر ن‬ ‫ا رض )إذا ا رت ا‬ ‫نو ت‬ ‫إذا ا رت ن ر‬ The course of true love never did run smooth (‫ت‬ ‫دوء أ دا )طر ق ا ب وف‬ ‫رى ر ا ب ا‬ Curses like chickens, come home to roost ‫أ‬ ‫د وات ا ر ود‬ A door must be either shut or open (‫م ا ذ ا رارات‬ ‫) د نا‬ ‫أو‬ ‫و‬ ‫د أن ون ا ب إ‬ A dwarf on a giant’s shoulders sees the farther of the two ‫ق رى أ د‬ ‫أ فا‬ ‫ا زم ا ذي ف‬ Desperate diseases must have desperate remedies ‫ن أدو‬ ‫د‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ا راض ا‬ Don’t change horses in the mid-stream ‫را لو طا ر‬ Don’t count your chickens before they are hatched ‫س نا ض‬ ‫د ا د ج ل أن‬ Don’t cross a bridge till you come to it ‫لإ‬ ‫ر ل أن‬ ‫را‬ Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face ‫بو ك‬ ‫ط أ ك‬ Do not halloo till you are out of the wood
  6. 6. ‫رج ن ا‬ ‫ل أن‬ ‫فا‬Do not kick against the pricks ‫ط رأ ك‬ ‫رب ا‬Don’t meet trouble half-way ‫ل ل أن‬ ‫ث نا‬Don’t put the cart before the horse ( ‫ا‬ ‫ر‬ ‫ءط‬ ‫ن )ا ل ا‬ ‫ا ر أ ما‬Don’t ride the high horse ( ‫ك ورد ا‬ ‫ر ورد‬ ) ‫نا‬ ‫ر با‬Footprints on the sands of time are not made by sitting down ‫ر ون إ ا د‬ ‫ت ذا رة ا ر م‬ ‫إن ا‬A hedge between keeps friendship green ( ‫زلا‬ ‫دا ك ) رة ا‬ ‫ظت‬ ‫د ك‬ ‫زا ك و ن‬ ‫إذا أ ت‬