Darkovan Proverbs

  • A devil with fine manners can still carry you only to hell.
  • A hawk kills because it is his nature; a man because it is his pleasure.
  • A rabbithorn cannot be a war-horse and will only become a laughingstock if he should try.
  • A roan horse and a black can travel equally far in a day's journey.
  • All the smiths . . . can't mend a broken egg.
  • All women are alike when the lamp is out.
  • An oath broken by one does not thereafter bind the other.
  • Bare is brotherless back.
  • Better lady in a cottage than serving-woman in a castle.
  • Call a woman a harlot and you make her one.
  • Can a burst dam be mended with toothpicks?
  • Can a mill go with the water that's past?
  • Can a mouse fall in love with a cat?
  • Chickens can't go back into eggs.
  • Does the left hand chop off the right?
  • Don't ask a dog to judge between a pillar and a tree.
  • Don't kick the horse you have to ride.
  • Don't trust your bone to another man's dog.
  • Don't try to buy fish in the Dry Towns.
  • Don't try to run before you can walk.
  • Don't try to walk before you can crawl.
  • Each man must ride the road of his own fate.
  • Each snowflake in an avalanche pleads its innocence.
  • Eggs should not fight stones.
  • Falcons don't fly after cage-birds.
  • Fire is a good servant but a poor master.
  • Foresight could make wise men of Durraman's donkeys.
  • Forget favours you have bestowed, remember those you have received.
  • Get three Darkovans together and they hold a dance.
  • Get thy spindle and thy distaff ready, and God will send flax.
  • Give the Goddess her due, even when her due is grief.
  • Good news crawls on its belly; bad news has wings.
  • Grief unspoken turns to poison.
  • He who lives more lives than one, more deaths than one must die.
  • If blood is spilt on you before breakfast, you will shed blood before nightfall.
  • If ill luck were cheese, dairy-women would go wanting work.
  • If in February there be no rain, 'tis neither good for hay nor grain.
  • If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
  • If stupidity were a crime, half the human race would be hanged at every crossroads.
  • If the ball does not stick to the wall, yet 'twill leave some mark.
  • If the left hand battles the right, who wins?
  • If the lion's skin cannot, the fox's shall.
  • If you are going to steal horses, steal thoroughbreds.
  • If you are kind to the cruel, you will be cruel to the kind.
  • If you are praised by a villain, mend your ways at once.
  • If you are ready to believe, you are easy to deceive.
  • If you have a bulldozer, you don't need a snow shovel.
  • If you lie down with a man, you may rise up as a woman.
  • If you lie down with dogs, you will get up with fleas.
  • If you lie upon roses when young, you will lie upon thorns when old.
  • If you listen to dogs barking, you'll go deaf and never learn much.
  • It is ill done to chain a dragon for roasting your meat.
  • It is no use fretting after last winter's snow.
  • It needs no laran to prophesy snow at midwinter.
  • It never rains but it pours.
  • Kinsmen are born, but friendship is a gift of the gods.
  • Love is love no matter whence it comes or in what form.
  • Love is the art of making exceptions.
  • Lucky charms protect you only if you have your own luck.
  • Necessity could make a thief. . . .
  • No choice is ever wholly unregretted, each brings more joy and more sorrow than we can foresee.
  • No man can make another's destiny and all the wishing in the world will not make it so.
  • No man is so young he cannot teach, or so old he cannot learn.
  • None so keen at the hunting of wolves as the dog with wolf blood.
  • Not a long day, but a good heart, rids work.
  • Not all brave words become deeds.
  • Not all porridge cooked is eaten.
  • Not even a god can bring back the leaves that have fallen.
  • Not even the Lord of Light can turn back time, or undo what has been done.
  • Nothing in this world is certain but death and next winter's snows.
  • Nothing is certain but death and taxes.
  • Nothing is certain but the unforeseen.
  • On a steep road, let your horse set the pace.
  • On an uphill road, give your horse his reins.
  • One does not breed a good bitch in her first heat.
  • One generation plants the trees, the next eats the fruit.
  • One lamp can't light two houses.
  • One law for the rich and another for the poor.
  • One who is false to her first oath will be false to her second.
  • Only a race horse or a Comyn lord is judged by his pedigree.
  • Only men laugh, only men weep, only men dance.
  • Put no faith in a drunkard's prophecy, another man's dog, or the weather at any season.
  • Rats make havoc in the kitchen when the cat's a kitten.
  • Take care how you beseech the gods for a gift, for they will give it to you.
  • Take care how you beseech the gods, they may answer you.
  • Take care of the pence and the pounds will take care of themselves.
  • That land fares ill where the king's but a babe.
  • The best horse can't wear two saddles.
  • The dead cannot come to kinsmen's aid.
  • The dead in heaven is too happy to grieve for indignities to his corpse; the dead in hell has too much else to grieve for
  • The mouse in the wall may look at a cat, but he is wise not to squeak about it.
  • The rain can only drown the mud-rabbit if he hasn't the wits to keep his mouth shut.
  • The rain does not all fall on one roof.
  • The sex of a cralmac is of interest only to another cralmac.
  • The wine has been poured and must be drunk.
  • The world goes as it will and not as you or I would want it.
  • The world goes as men make it go; and men are free to make it go otherwise, if they have the courage.
  • There is neither wisdom nor courage in an empty belly.
  • There is no way to teach a machine wisdom after folly.
  • There is nothing so evil as the mind of a virtuous woman.
  • There is nothing so good for the inside of a man as the outside of a horse.
  • Underneath every bush you'll find a mud rabbit ready to bolt.
  • Unemployment does not guarantee leisure.
  • Water can float a boat or sink it.
  • We will fly that hawk when his pinions are grown.
  • We will ride that colt when he is grown to wear a saddle.
  • We'll cross that bridge when we come to it.
  • Wear no sword at kinsman's board.
  • What is done under the four moons need never be recalled nor regretted.
  • What the gods make, the planet can find use for.
  • When bredin split, enemies enter the gap.
  • Where two women rule a hearth-fire, the thatch may burn with the sparks flying.
  • Where vain-glory reigns, folly is prime counsellor.
  • Where vice is vengeance follows.
  • Where villany goes before, vengeance follows after.
  • While the mouse in the walls may look from afar at a cat, he does well not to go squeaking about it.
  • Who grudges his blood to a blade had better earn his living behind the plow.
  • Who picks a tool unsuited to a task should not complain if it does no more than cut the hand that holds it.
  • Willing exile is exile nonetheless.
  • You can't bind a cloud even with copper chains.
  • You can't teach an old dog how to gnaw a bone.
  • You can't teach an old dog new tricks.
  • You can't tell a book by its cover.
  • You cannot eat nuts without breaking some shells.
  • You cannot forge a hammer from featherpod fluff, nor spin spidersilk from precious copper.
  • You cannot get a quart into a pint pot.
  • You cannot get blood from a stone.
  • You cannot take hawks without climbing some cliffs.

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