Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Chinese Proverbs and Idioms

I've never been the awesomest student when it comes to Mandarin. And somehow I suck in Chinese if it were to be compared with my English and Bahasa Malaysia. But there is something that attracts me about Chinese. It is the idioms and proverbs. Unlike many English idioms and Peribahasa (Malay proverbs), many of the Chinese proverbs are accounted for, in terms of who uttered it and the source of document it came from.

And Chinese proverbs can be so artfully describe, as ancient China emphasizes a lot in the beauty of their language. Whether if it is about love, scenery, words of advice, or even artful swipes, there IS always a suitable idiom to be used.

But sad to say that Chinese language itself is under threat. The only majority speaking Mandarin countries are just China, Taiwan and Malaysia (if I'm not mistaken, and judging by the articulate Chinese they use).

I know there are quite a number of Chinese who had never received proper education in Mandarin. So since I'm quite free, I basically translated the idioms that are introduced in the secondary syllables.

As to help those with an insight to Chinese proverbs, and also for myself to refresh the idioms I've learned, and also to be taught again on the values it has.



Literal meaning: Even when a gentleman dislikes someone, he doesn’t talk bad about him or her


Literal meaning: The root of all problems is because human’s greed


Literal meaning: If you never experience something, you’ll never learn something


Literal meaning: Even among three people, there is always something an individual have that can be taught to the other two.


Literal meaning: Do not disturb the birds in their nests. They are eagerly waiting for their mum to be back.


Literal meaning: If it is something that you don't want, then don't expect others to want it by giving it to them


Literal meaning: It’s not too late to mend a broken pen keeping goats when one goat is missing from the pen


Literal meaning: Studies are improve because of hard work, neglected because of slacking


Literal meaning: The time of going through a day without you is like spending an unbearable three years.


Literal meaning: For showing gratitude of the peaches, I’ll give you pears


Literal meaning: A kid may be smart, but that doesn’t promise him a bright future.


Literal meaning: A word or a promise, is heavier or more precious than a hundred gold bars


Literal meaning: You’ll turn red when you touch red dye; you’ll turn black when you touch black ink


Literal meaning: Remember the good deeds people have done, forget and forgive the sins that they’ve commit


Literal meaning: If one really does intend to learn, it is no sin for him or her to ask someone who is from the lower status


Literal meaning: The secret of mastering something is to keep on repeating doing it


Literal meaning: We come from the same roots, why must be kill or harm each other?


Literal meaning: If you’re not a good example, don’t expect others to follow or listen


Literal meaning: Promising someone verbally but in the end not doing or achieving it practically


Literal meaning: If you’ve accomplished something big, your happiness is definitely “bigger” than those who accomplished something smaller

21) 一日曝之,十日寒之

Literal meaning: Hot for a day, cold for ten days. Meaning no discipline or determination

22) 人逢喜事精神爽,月到中秋分外明

Literal meaning: During a joyous occasion, people tend to have happier mood, during moon cake festival, the moon will be rounder than other times

23) 欲穷千里目,更上一层楼

Literal meaning: If you want to see more of the view, then you’ll have to climb a higher level of the tower

24) 慈母手中线,游子身上衣

Literal meaning: Each strand of thread or yarn that a mother knits is to make a sweater for her outgoing children

25) 富贵本无根,尽从勤里得

Literal meaning: There is no secret ways to be wealthy or accomplished rather than to be hard working

26) 以子之矛,攻子之盾

Literal meaning: I’ll attack your shield with your spear. Meaning one’s word are contradicting.

27) 谁知盘中餐,粒粒皆辛苦

Literal meaning: Who knows the rice taken during meals, each and every grain is the fruit of a farmer’s hard work

28) 清明节时雨纷纷,路上行人欲断魂

Literal meaning: During Chengbeng it drizzles, the people walking all look so sullen and sad. Used to describe Chengbeng occasions

29) 路遥见马力,日久见人心

Literal meaning: Only a long journey may we know whether a horse is strong; only going through days and years we know what’s inside a person’s heart

30) 明日复明日,明日何其多;日日复明日,万事成蹉跎

Literal meaning: Keep on delaying tasks for tomorrow, how much tomorrow you have? Every day you keep on delaying for the other tomorrow, you’ll end up with everything undone.

There you go. 30 of'em. =)

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