African Proverbs

Proverb Ethnicity Country Discuss
A bad son gives a bad name to his mother. Ivory Coast
A blade won't cut another blade; a cheat won't cheat another cheat. Ethiopia
A cat may go to a monastery, but she still remains a cat! Ethiopia
A close friend can become a close enemy. Ethiopia
A cow gave birth to a fire: she wanted to lick it, but it burned; she wanted to leave it, but she could not because it was her own child Ethiopia
A cow that has no tail should not try to chase away flies. Guinea
A coward sweats in water. Ethiopia
A crab does not beget a bird. Ghana
A cutting word is worse than a bowstring; a cut may heal, but the cut of the tongue does not Mauritania
A fool and water will go the way they are diverted. Ethiopia
A fool looks for dung where the cow never browsed. Ethiopia
A fool will pair an ox with an elephant. Ethiopia
A good deed is something one returns. Guinea
A little leaven smoothes away the whole lump. Ivory Coast
A little rain each day will fill the rivers to overflowing. Liberia
A little subtleness is better than a lot of force. Congo D.R. (Zaire)
A loose tooth will not rest until it's pulled out. Ethiopia
A man who continually laments is not heeded. Kenya
A man who has once been tossed by a buffalo, when he sees a black ox, thinks its another buffalo Kenya
A man with too much ambition cannot sleep in peace. Baguirmi
A man's wealth may be superior to him. Cameroon
A partner in the business will not put an obstacle to it. Ethiopia
A pretty basket does not prevent worries. Congo D.R. (Zaire)
A silly daughter teaches her mother how to bear children. Ethiopia
A single bracelet does not jingle. Congo D.R. (Zaire)