Italian proverbs, part 7

Hi my lovelies,

Today’s post is a new one in the series on Italian proverbs. You can find the first one here, the second one here, the third one here, the fourth one here, the fifth one here, the sixth one here. In this post I will explain some more proverbs, in alphabetical order.

1. Andare dalla padella nella brace

It literally translates “To go from the frying pan into the barbecue”. It means to go from a bad situation into one that is even worse (i.e. “Out of the frying pan and into the fire”). You can use it when, to get away from a problematic situation, you get yourself into even more trouble.

2. Anno nuovo, vita nuova.

Its literal translation is “New Year, new life”. It refers to the hopes and expectations that the start of a new year brings. After all, we all make new year proposition, don’t we?

3. Chi disprezza, compra.

The literal translation is “He/she who despises, buys”. It means that many times people badmouth something only because they would like to have it but they know they can’t have it, or because they have interest in not showing how much they like something.

4. Chi dorme non piglia pesci.

Literally translated, it is “Those who sleep don’t catch any fish”. It means that if you are lazy and just wait for it to come to you, without working to reach your goals and seize opportunities, you won’t actually ever obtain anything.

5. In amore e in guerra tutto è lecito.

It can be literally translated as “In love and in war everything is allowed” (i.e. “All’s fair in love and war”). It means that love and war are similar in that you can resort to all your tricks and resources, even illicit ones, to win against your enemy or to conquer the love of the person you fancy.

6. I panni sporchi si lavano in famiglia.

It is literally translated as “You wash your dirty clothes in family”. It means that your personal or family problems shouldn’t be made gratuitously public (i.e. “You don’t air your dirty laundry in public”). Whatever problem you have in your family should be solved by the family itself without intervention from third parties.

7. L’ospite è come il pesce: dopo tre giorni puzza.

It literally translates “The guest is like fish: it smells after three days”. It means that if you are a guest at somebody’s place you should be polite and not stay too long, but know when to leave before becoming intruding and invade one’s privacy.

8. L’ozio è il padre dei vizi.

Its literal translation is “Idleness is the father of vices” (i.e. “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop”). It means that idleness is one of the worse vices, leading to evil.

9. La bugia ha le gambe corte.

The literal translation is “Lies have short legs”. It means that lies last short because they get sooner or later discovered (i.e. “Truth will out”).

10. La fame fa uscire il lupo dal bosco/dalla tana.

Literally translated it is “Hunger makes the wolf come out of the forest/den”. It means that when you are in desperate need you are inclined to go quite out of your comfort zone and take (even serious) risks.

11. La fretta è cattiva consigliera.

It can be literally translated as “Haste is a bad advisor”. It means that when you decide or do things in a hurry you’ll probably take a wrong decision or make mistakes.

12. La notte porta consiglio

It is literally translated as “The night brings council”, but its English equivalent can be found in “Take counsel of one’s pillow”. It means that if you are undecided about something or have to make an important decision, it usually helps to take your time to carefully think about it and sleep on it.

13. La prudenza non è mai troppa.

It literally translates “Caution is never too much”. It means that you can never be too cautious, but it is better to be prudent.

14. Lontano dagli occhi lontano dal cuore.

Its literal translation is “Far from eyes, far from the heart”. It means that you care less, or you are less hurt, about something that you can’t actually see or you are not in direct contact with (i.e. “Out of sight, out of mind”).

15. Non tutte le ciambelle riescono col buco.

The literal translation is “Not all doughnuts come out with the hole”. It means that despite all efforts imperfections and defects happens.

16. Non tutti i mali vengono per nuocere.

Literally translated it is “Not all bad things come to hurt”. It means that when bad things happen to you, you shouldn’t always despair, because in the end they can lead to something positive.



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