Una Mela al Giorno Posted by Serena on May 16, 2010 in Culture, Italian Language
A couple of days ago Geoff (mio marito) was chatting with some of his friends in the piazza about sayings (detti) and proverbs (proverbi). They ended up by trying to make a list of Italian equivalents for well known English sayings and vice versa. Here, for your entertainment, is the list so far:
|una mela al giorno leva il medica di torno
|an apple a day keeps the doctor away
|cadere dalla padella nella brace
|out of the frying pan into the fire
|prendere due piccioni con una fava
|kill two birds with one stone
|a caval donato non si guarda in bocca
|never look a gift horse in the mouth
|rosso di sera bel tempo si spera
|red sky at night shepherds delight
|ride bene chi ride ultimo
|he who laughs last laughs loudest
|l’erba del vicino è sempre più verde
|the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence
|meglio tardi che mai
|better late than never
|non è bello ciò che è bello, ma è bello ciò che piace
|beauty is in the eye of the beholder
|lontano dagli occhi lontano dal cuore
|out of sight out of mind
|il bisogno aguzza l’ingegno
|necessity is the mother of invention
|qual è nato prima, l’uovo o la gallina?
|which came first, the chicken or the egg?
Here are a few Italian proverbs for which we couldn’t think of an English equivalent, can you help us out?:
|chi fa per sè fa per tre
|‘who does for themselves does for three’ i.e.: sometimes it’s less work to do something for yourself. This may be the equivalent of ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’, but perhaps there is something better?
|il diavolo fa le pentole ma non i coperchi
|‘the devil makes the pans but not the lids’ i.e.: if you do something bad, sooner or later the truth will come out.
|tra il dire e il fare c’è di mezzo il mare
|‘between the saying and the doing there is the sea in the middle’ i.e.: it’s much easier to say something than it is to do it.
|il lupo perde il pelo ma non il vizio
|‘the wolf looses its pelt but not its vice’ i.e.: the external appearance may change, but not what’s inside.
|la gallina che canta ha fatto l’uovo
|‘the chicken that sings laid the egg’ i.e.: the person who begins to make a fuss about something is probably the culprit.
Do you have any interesting proverbs from your culture? If so, please share them with us and I’ll try to find something similar in Italian.
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