Jamaican Proverbs and Sayings
- You too red eye”, Meaning, you’re too envious.
- Me bleach hard lass night”, I partied straight through the night.
- Coo pon dat bwoy”, “Look at that boy”
- Heart No Leap”, “See and Blind”. These sayings are similar to “hear no evil, see no evil”.
- Chicken deh merry, Hawk deh near. (Where there is too much merriment and excitement, danger lurks near.)
- Di daakes’part a di night a when diay soon light. (When thing and times are the hardest brighter times are near.)
- Howdy an ‘tenk yu, noh brok noh square. (To say howdy and thank you is not a bad thing)
- Noh cup noh brok, noh coffee noh trow weh. (If you survive unharmed, everything is fine.)
- Wha’ noh poison, fatten. (If an experience doesn’t destroys you, you can benefit greatly from it.)
- Hog say, di fus water im cetch, I’m walla. (Make use of the first opportunity.)
- Bucket wid hole a battam have no business a riverside. (Mind your own business.)
- Rockstone a riva battam noh know’ sun hot. (If you are in a sheltered situation, you don’t know what hardship is.)
- Yu mek yu sail too big fi uy boat, yu sail wi capsize yu. (Don’t be someone you’re not.)
- If you want half a bread, beg smaddy buy it, but if yu want a wan, buy it yuself. (If you want it done right, do it yourself.)
- “Ston a riva battan nuh know sun hat” (Stone at the bottom of the river do not know how hot the sun is). Meaning – You cannot relate to someone’s experience if you are not in similair conditions.
- “Cockroach nuh business inna fowl fight.
- (Roaches must not get involve in chicken fight.)
- Meaning – If you can’t add value to a situation or argument, don’t get involved, because if you do, you will wish you didn’t.
- Mi come here fi drink milk, mi noh come here fi count cow”. A reminder to conduct business in a straightforward manner.
- The higher the monkey climbs the more him expose”. A truly comic image if you’ve ever been to the zoo, and comforting to any of us whose backs have been used as a stepping-stone for someone else’s success.
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