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SAYINGS OF THE FATHERS. WinterABC2020 (Proverbs in twi language)


Proverbs in your vernacular and their meaning.

I started laughing when I saw the topic for day 11. I love it when especially our elders speak and they lace their speech with proverbs here and there. Some are easily understood and can be related almost literally while others are very difficult and ”coded”.
Even though I love proverbs, I can’t bring myself to learn them or apply them so recalling them today has been quite hectic. I came up with a few. Make no mistake, I am Ashanti and proud of that; I only don’t know that many Proverbs. I guess I should just stop rattling and tell the few I remember.

Here they are;

1. s3 wo de w’ano d) nnwer3 aa, ebi 3nw) wo.
An attempted translation will be, ”if you weed thorns with your mouth, you won’t get a prick”. This proverb means that you have to actively perform an act for a consequence to occur.

2. Ahunubip3n nti na aboa aserewa, s3 )regye ne ba agor) aa na w’ayi n’ani ato nky3n. ”It is due to the experience that the silverbird does not look at the offspring when they play with them.” I hear this animal almost always losses their offspring hence even though they love them, they exercise some restraint lest they hurt as much if the babies should die again. The English of this proverb could be said to be ”once bitten, twice shy”.

3. Abofra bo nwa, )mm) akyekyede3. ”A child can break the shell a snail but not a tortoise”. I guess this has to do with knowing your place in life and the things you can and can’t do. The English proverb that best explains this will be “cut your coat accordingly to your cloth”.

4. Abofra a ohunu ne nsa hohoro na one mpanyinfo) didi. “It’s the child that masters the act of washing hands that eats with adults/elders.” This proverb serves to encourage excellence and level of expertise in various aspects of life. It basically means that the person who is most experienced or learned about something mostly stands a higher chance of being asked to do it.

5.)koto nnwo anomaa. “A crab does not give birth a bird”. It is usually used to express resemblance in the physical or character traits of two relatives (often a child and parent) ~people or entities.~ The English variation of this proverb could be ”the apple does not fall far from its tree”.

There, I managed five. Whew!

Do you know any proverbs in your vernacular? Care to share? Leave a comment and share.

Till next time,

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