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Regular readers of Bored Panda will no doubt be familiar with James Chapman, a designer based in Manchester, England who creates funny drawings based on the concept of language, especially popular sayings. Previously he showed us how kissing, snoring, and animals sound in different languages, and now he's brought us a collection of illustrated literal meaning translations of peculiar and often funny sayings from around the world.

From Kenya and Sweden to popular idioms in Ethiopia and Russia, Chapman shows us how different countries often interpret well-known proverbs (sleeping on a problem/judging a book by its cover/nothing last forever) while also introducing us to funny idioms that we might have never heard before. Like his work? Then head on over to Etsy where you can find a whole bunch of merchandise for sale.

More info: Etsy

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#3

Words Of Wisdom

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Pi...
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The meaning probably needs to be altered: that misfortune befalls all, whether it be prince or pauper.

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#5

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Idil Sönmez
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

As a Turkish woman, I had to google the line to see the Turkish version cause I've never heard of it before.

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#8

Words Of Wisdom

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SK
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

proverb originally is more about adjusting to the society around you, doesn't mean only dangerous situations.

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#9

Words Of Wisdom

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Daria B
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wow! An American comics character became part of an Asian proverb!? How so? Does it mean Batmam is THAT old and THAT iconic? I mean, Superman and Wonder Woman have entered the language through idioms, but this is the first time I see a superhero in a proverb. Proverbs are considered as old words of wisdom. Interesting. This makes me curious. ♥

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#13

Words Of Wisdom

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This also exists in other European coutnries. Unfortunately, clever digers might get away still...

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#16

Words Of Wisdom

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Cheesybeansy
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

its all about perception im afraid. the older you get the more you realise you are missing the bigger picture, then the even bigger picture after that..

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#17

Words Of Wisdom

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JEFF THE KILLER
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

my family is always like oh your supposed to be loud and I'm in my room listening to music....

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#18

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HɒnɒЯose
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Well I am afraid you need to fall eight times first, in order for you to stand up the eighth time

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#20

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Now this is the electoral debate that I would like to have witnessed!

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#21

Words Of Wisdom

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Łukasz Markuszewski
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

It's mean something different: some people just look for reasons to blame for their failures in the outside, never in the inside. The bad ballerina blames the hem of her skirt, not her poor dancing skills.

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#22

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heidi holmes
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

"Don't judge a book by it's cover" Is how the saying goes here in the USA

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#24

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Jef Bateman
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

In English, a "feather in the cap" means accolades. Could this idiom actually mean, "Don't worry about receiving praise, just do the job and be happy with what you get"? That makes more sense to me.

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#25

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Daria B
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

In Croatia we also say "Who gets burnt once, blows even on cold", as when you blow on hot food prior to putting it in your mouth to cool it down first.

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#32

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Alper
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

A donkey with a golden saddle is still a donkey (Turkish)

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#35

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Intensive Panda
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

A similar russian proverb is:"you can't butter a bread with thank you"

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#40

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Pi...
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I think the meaning is a little less positive than that.. along the lines of "for a mother her son is the most handsome n the best"

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#42

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

"Wer rastet, der rostet" in the original, which shows why it is hard to literally translate. It plays with "rasten" with an "o" instead of the "a" having a completely different meaning. In English "He who rests, rusts" sounds a bit odd.

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#44

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Little Menace
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I prefer: "IF my grandma had wheels she'd be an omnibus". This saying is quite well known in Germany and Italy and probably a lot of other places.

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#45

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

"Do not use canons on sparrows" is the European version. :)

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#47

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#48

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Another one to exist in several languges. I am wondering how such proverbs have spread, or if they have been "invented" independently.

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#50

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#52

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#55

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Sandra Bartsch
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

same proverb in German, saying that gras won't grow faster when you're pulling on it

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#58

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Cheesybeansy
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

My Korean friend explained it like this to me; of a Koi carp trying to swim up a waterfall, and if he reached the top he would become a dragon. its about facing great adversity and if you were to beat it you would become more powerful than you imagined.

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#59

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Even though I think a cat will appreciate food, food, and a belly rub more. In that order.

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#62

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Доброцвета Илиева
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Proverbs could be really funny! The one I know in my language with the same meaning is: "Scabby donkeys smell each other"

#63

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Rebekah Pruett
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Just don't forget to learn from your past or you'll spend your whole life repeating it.

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#67

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Little Menace
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I disagree with the meaning. I think it means that despite being small, it is a valid living thing just like everyone else.

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#70

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#71

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Nurul Bintoro
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

There's a similar saying in my country "Prepare an umbrella before it rains" the meaning is similar like that

#72

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#78

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Storm Villago
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Or you only understand things from the perspective you relate to

#80

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Hans
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Anyone aware of the origin? Why would it literally be reasonable to get a tiger's cub?

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#81

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Tracey Tait
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I was taught it meant if you misuse another to advance yourself, you look a a*s twice over.

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#82

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Pi...
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

More along the lines of, if u don't take care of ur things, they'll just be ruined. Not just homes! Lol

#83

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Pi...
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7 years ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I think it's more along the lines of , if u need a specific tool, ask the person who makes such items..