120+ Ethiopian Proverbs (2021 Updated)

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  • Post last modified:April 21, 2021
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Many people use the power of oral traditions to pass down their culture and their ethics, and some sayings are not always meant to be taken literally. While there are many Ethiopian proverbs one can use to develop a proverb collection, one should look at each saying in context. An example of the proverbs, “The wise listen and the dumb speak.” This is generally interpreted to mean that those who do not listen will end up acting in foolish ways, while those who are willing to listen will benefit from their decisions. However, Ethiopia Quotes can explain why those who are wise to listen to others and those who are foolish act without thinking.

Many Ethiopian proverbs consider culture and society to be relevant at all. In cases like this, it is essential to look beyond the literal meaning of the proverb and examine its cultural context to see if it could apply to one’s situation or life. Many resources provide information on how to use these quotes and sayings correctly, and therefore it is essential to be able to do so.

The same water never runs into the same river.

Ethiopian proverb

One thinks of water only when the well is empty.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The dog I bought bit me; the fire I kindled, burned me.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One may have two legs, but that does not mean one can climb two trees at the same time.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The arrogant blind man picks a fight with his guide.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Those who wish to eat a vulture, will call it a guinea fowl.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When the heart overflows, it comes out through the mouth.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Life has no meaning for one without a home.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who attempts to hide with a dog, child, goat, or a person with the flu will not stay hidden long.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Calves do not fear their mother’s horns.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When one walks carefully, thorns prick only lightly.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Unless you call out, who will open the door?.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The eye of the leopard is on the goat, and the eye of the goat is on the leaf.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The fool is thirsty in the midst of a downpour.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A home without a woman is like a barn without cattle.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If you see that a town respects a calf, then cut the grass and feed it.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Move your neck in accordance to the music.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If they speak, they are wind; if they are silent, they are gourds.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

It is better to be the cub of a living jackal than that of a dead lion.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

What one wishes for is always better than what one has.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Where there is no shame, there cannot be any honor.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Snake at your feet – stick at your hand.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

It is simple to become a monk in one’s old age.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The one who is mistaken is the one who does nothing.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The person who grew up without correction will find his mouth slipping instead of his foot.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A partner in business will not put an obstacle to it.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Evil enters like the needle but spreads like an oak tree.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If you are hurt by a friend, run to your wife.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

He who conceals his disease cannot expect to be cured.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB


Pride cannot replace a dinner.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

There are no better witnesses than your own eyes.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who has not learned to walk cannot climb a ladder.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The sky is very near for those who sit.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Whether it rains or not, the lentils have two eyes.

Ethiopian proverb

Cow dung can’t be gathered where no cow has been.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Do not catch a leopard by it’s tail, but if you do, then do not let it go.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

They snatched from me my own cry.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A foolish daughter teaches her mother how to give birth to children.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

I have a cow in the sky, but cannot drink her milk.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A single stick may smoke, but it will not burn.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The arrogant blind man picks a fight with his guide.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When the webs of the spider join, they can trap a lion.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who plants grapes by the road side, and one who marries a pretty woman, share the same problem.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The heart of a fool is in his mouth and the mouth of the wise man is in his heart.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A good conversation is better than a good bed.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If relatives help each other, what evil can hurt them.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A good conversation is always better than a good bed.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Slowly by slowly an egg will walk.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who hides their illness cannot expect to be cured.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

It is foolish to start a fire just to see the flames.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When one is in love, a cliff becomes a meadow.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When the hyena is gone, that is when the dog barks.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A woman without a man is like a field without a seed.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When one is in love, a mountain top becomes a flat field.

Ethiopian proverb

The slimming of an elephant and the losses of a wealthy man are not noticeable.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

When webs of a spider join together, they can trap a lion.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Only the man who is not hungry says the coconut has a hard shell.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

She who does not yet know how to walk cannot climb a ladder.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A rat’s witness is another rat.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

No one became wealthy because they broke a holiday, and no one who gained weight because they broke a fast.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who plants grapes by the road side, and one who marries a beautiful woman, share the same problem.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A good name is better than good perfume.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If you gladly stoop to the ground don’t be surprised if they trample over you.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The calves do not fear the horns of their mother.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Confiding a secret to an unworthy person is like carrying a grain in a bag with a hole in it.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A Coffee and love taste best when hot.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

One who tries to hide with a dog, a child, a goat, or a person with a cold, will not remain hidden.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Don’t catch a leopard by the tail, but if you do, don’t let it go.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

An overly modest man goes hungry.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Counsel and advice him, if he refuses to listen, then let adversity teach him.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

The dog barks after the hyena has left.

Ethiopian proverb

When the heart is overflowing, it will come out through the mouth.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A fool will pair an elephant with an ox.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A man that is too modest will go hungry.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A powerful friend becomes a powerful enemy.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A sad face is noticeable but not a sad heart.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Because he killed his wife he took shelter with his in-laws.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

A single stick may smoke, but it will not cause a fire.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

As the wound inflames the finger, so the thought inflames the mind.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Only eat when the food is ready and speak when the time is right.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

Great men have big hearts.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

If relatives help each other, what harm can reach them?.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

It is like using a spoon to get water from the Nile River.

ETHIOPIAN PROVERB

About Ethiopian Proverbs

When it comes to making life more accessible, the thing that always comes to my mind is the phrase “a thing of a size is not enough”, and when I am thinking about Ethiopian Proverbs, this saying comes to mind.

The thing about Ethiopian proverbs or sayings is that comes to mind when thinking about Ethiopia is a comforting thought for the people. These are the people who have given us the adage that tells us what they did, what they are and where they are.

One of the most exciting things about the Ethiopian proverbs and its meaning is that it does mean what it seems to say. It is more of advice and a piece of wisdom. This is because there is no strict rule about the format of a proverb and the quote remains a unique quote between two people. The quote may be a bit longer, but there is a scope for being shorter.

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