Exotic African Proverbs – [Complete Collection].

african proverbs

Looking for a list of African proverbs for wisdom and guidance in life, look no further as you have landed in the right place and you won’t be disappointed.

This post contains a compressive collection of 600 African proverbs, African proverbs about life and African sayings on life and wisdom from all 54 African countries In Africa.

Also, this is the most compressive list of African proverbs you will ever find on the internet. Take your time to assimilate the wisdom these African proverbs will give you today.

Proverbs have been used for generations by elders in different cultures all over the world to pass wisdom from one generation to another.

Why These African Proverbs?

Well, these indigenous African proverbs you are about to read will impart new wisdom in the life you might have been missing to help you live purposefully.

You will also get a peek on different African cultures and traditions from various African countries surrounding the proverbs you are about to read.

Another reason you need proverbs in your life is that proverbs contain rich and hidden wisdom about life which will help you to make wise choices.

With that said, let’s look at the 600 African proverbs you will ever need in your life to live a meaningful life here on earth.

600 Indigenous African Proverbs

Here is a compressive list of 600 African proverbs and African saying. Take your time reading and assimilating the rich wisdom they have in store for you.

1. When a man is stung by the bee, he does not destroy all beehives. African Proverb.

2. As you do for your ancestors, your children, your children will do for you. African Proverb.

3. People, when drink to drown their sorrows, should be told that sorrow knows how to swim. African Proverb.

4. A clear conscious makes a soft pillow. African Proverb.

5. Character is like pregnancy. It cannot be hidden forever. African Proverb.

6. By crawling, a child learns to stand. African Proverb.

7. When roots are deep, there is no need to fear the wind. African Proverb.

8. When the music changes, so do the dance. African Proverb.

9. Even the best dancer on stage must retire sometime. African Proverb.

10. No matter how much a person changes, goats will never lay eggs. African proverb.

11. A strong bull is seen by its scars. Zambian Proverb.

12. A tender bamboo cannot be eagerly desired for building. Zambian Proverb.

13. An old poacher makes the best gamekeeper. Zambian Proverb.

14. A wild dog is best eaten when clubbed to death. Zambian Proverb.

15. A monkey that pilfers from a widow’s larder must not be admonished. Zambian Proverb.

16. Do not look at a visitor’s face but at his stomach. Zambian Proverb.

17. If you have no teeth, do not break the clay cooking pot. Zambian Proverb.

18. It is inevitable that two thighs will rub against each other. Zambian Proverb.

19. Lies have short legs. Zambian Proverb.

20. Things that are stolen will really never make you rich. Zambian Proverb.

21. A borrowed fiddle does not finish a tune. Zimbabwean Proverb.

22. A weaning baby that does not cry aloud, will die on its mothers back. Zimbabwean Proverb.

23. A bull is not known in two herds. Zimbabwean Proverb.

24. An elephant’s tusks are never too heavy for it. Zimbabwean Proverb.

25. Annoy your doctor and sickness comes in laughing. Zimbabwean Proverb.

26. Blood is the sweat of heroes. Zimbabwean Proverb.

27. Don’t throw out the old pot until you have the tinker makes a new one. Zimbabwean Proverb.

28. God is good, but never dance with a lion. Zimbabwean Proverb.

29. If God gives you leprosy, look to your own past misdeeds. Zimbabwean Proverb.

30. The monkey does not see his own hind backside; he sees his neighbour’s. Zimbabwean Proverb.

31. A priest sees people at their best, a lawyer at their worst, but a doctor sees them as they really are. Congolese Proverb.

32. Being well dressed does not prevent one from being poor. Congolese Proverb.

33. A cat goes to a monastery, but she still remains a cat. Congolese Proverb.

34. Death does not sound a trumpet. Congolese Proverb.

35. Don’t cut off the monkey’s tail before it is dead. Congolese Proverb.

36. Don’t buy a boat that is underwater. Congolese Proverb.

37. If you tell people to live together, you tell them to quarrel. Congolese Proverb.

38. No matter how full the river, it still wants to swell more. Congolese Proverb.

39. Pride goes only as far as one can spit. Congolese Proverb.

40. The iron never takes advice from the hammer. Congolese Proverb.

41. One spoon of soup in need has more value than a pot of soup when we have an abundance of food. Angolan Proverb.

42. The one who throws the stone forgets; the one who is hit remembers forever. Angolan Proverb.

43. The squirrel does not talk back to the elephant. Angolan Proverb.

44. Scolding woman has self to blame when the husband who liked her puts her away. Angolan Proverb.

45. The one who throws stones forgets; the one who is hit remembers forever. Angolan Proverb.

46. The human skin characterizes people; the vital skin has a different name. Angolan Proverb.

47. A fowl shuns poisonous worm. Angolan Proverb.

48. The body is easily satisfied but not the heart. Angolan Proverb.

49. It is the voyage, not the ship that matters. Angolan Proverb.

50. Useless to warn one who has made up his mind. Angolan Proverb.

51. When the fish gets rotten, it all starts from the head. Namibian Proverb.

52. When a tiny toe is hurting the whole body stoops down to attend to it. Namibian Proverb.

53. When the fox is hungry, he eats butterflies. Namibian Proverb.

54. Where you see the tail, there is the mouse. Namibian Proverb.

55. As soon as the monkey has climbed a tree, it will start abusing from its elevated position. Namibian Proverb.

56. Envy and greed grow on the same stalk. Namibian Proverb.

57. God is in the details and so is the devil. Namibian Proverb.

58. Never kill the cat that cries. Namibian Proverb.

59. If the State is going to fall, it is from the belly. Namibian Proverb.

60. If you want to give God a good laugh, tell him of your future plans. Namibian Proverb.

61. Witch doctors do not sell their potions to each other. Mozambican Proverb.

62. Slander by the stream will be heard by the frogs. Mozambican Proverb.

63. A snake that you can see does not bite. Mozambican Proverb.

64. Never marry a woman who has bigger feet than you. Mozambican Proverb.

65. Do not try to fight a lion if you are not one yourself. Mozambican Proverb.

66. Once a man has been bitten by a lion, he buys a dog. Mozambican Proverb.

67. When you live next to the cemetery, you cannot weep for everyone. Mozambican Proverb.

68. An elephant with a bad leg limps along. Mozambican Proverb.

69. A parasite cannot live alone. Mozambican Proverb.

70. If you fail to be a lizard in your own land, you will fail to be a crocodile in another land. Mozambican Proverb.

71. A piece of incense may be as large as the knee, but unless burned emits no fragrance. Malawian Proverb.

72. A deer tethered with a golden chain can escape to the forest to eat grass. Malawian Proverb.

73. Anything with scales counts as a fish. Malawian Proverb.

74. As if it weren’t bad enough to fall, the ladder lands on top of you. Malawian Proverb.

75. Don’t think there are no crocodiles just because of the water’s calm. Malawian Proverb.

76. Every man is a prince in his own bed. Malawian Proverb.

77. Crabs teach their offspring to walk straight. Malawian Proverb.

78. Don’t think back on someone whose name you forgot, he is probably someone else by now. Malawian Proverb.

79. Clapping with the right hand only will not make a noise. Malawian Proverb.

80. Every joy will follow in grief’s footsteps. Malawian Proverb.

81. A fool and water will go the way they are diverted. Botswanan Proverb.

82. As the lion said, ‘I will kill your lambs and you will remember my presence. Botswanan Proverb.

83. Beautiful words don’t put porridge in the pot. Botswanan Proverb.

84. You can’t keep a bull in the Kraal. Botswanan Proverb.

85. God is our general in time of war. Botswanan Proverb.

86. Ninety-nine lies may help you, but the hundredth will give you away. Botswanan Proverb.

87. Do not look where the harvest is plentiful, but where the people are kind. Botswanan Proverb.

88. A prudent man who knows proverbs resolved problems. Botswanan Proverb.

89. A lion cannot hear its own roar. Botswanan Proverb.

90. Only a lion knows best its own needs and can best serve them. Botswanan Proverb.

91. A sheep cannot bleat in two different places at the same time. Tanzanian Proverb.

92. Even flies have ears. Tanzanian Proverb.

93. Everything has an end. Tanzanian Proverb.

94. Do not mend your neighbour’s fence before seeing to your own. Tanzanian Proverb.

95. Little by little, a little becomes a lot. Tanzanian Proverb.

96. We start as fools and become wise through experience. Tanzanian Proverb.

97. The roaring lion kills no game. Tanzanian Proverb.

98. Much wealth brings many enemies. Tanzanian Proverb.

99. Events follow one another like the days of the week. Tanzanian Proverb.

100. One who bathes willingly with cold water doesn’t feel the cold. Tanzanian Proverb.

101. Better to kiss an ugly woman than to lick yourself. Burundian Proverb.

102. Don’t tell any more fairy tales when the child has gone to sleep. Burundian Proverb.

103. A mother’s wrath does not survive the night. Burundian Proverb.

104. If a young woman says no to marriage just wait until her breasts sag. Burundian Proverb.

105. It is easy to pull a thorn out of someone else’s skin. Burundian Proverb.

106. The fetus that is afraid of criticism is never born. Burundian Proverb.

107. The reception has more value than the invitation. Burundian Proverb.

108. When the master of the house tells a lie, then offer him a chair. Burundian Proverb.

109. Who built the drum knows best what is inside. Burundian Proverb.

110. Too many words blacken your ears. Burundian Proverb.

111. A person changing his clothing always hides while changing. Kenyan Proverb.

112. A flea can trouble a lion more than the lion can harm a flea. Kenyan Proverb.

113. A white dog does not bite another white dog. Kenyan Proverb.

114. A donkey always says thank you with a kick. Kenyan Proverb.

115. Because a man has injured your goat, do not go out and kill his bull. Kenyan Proverb.

116. Do not slaughter a calf before its mother’s eyes. Kenyan Proverb.

117. Each has his own way of moving. Kenyan Proverb.

118. He who is unable to dance blames it in the stony yard. Kenyan Proverb.

119. How easy it is to defeat people who do not kindle fire for themselves. Kenyan Proverb.

120. Hurrying has no blessing. Kenyan Proverb.

121. An infertile woman gets a lot of visitors. Ugandan Proverb.

122. Caution is not cowardice; even the ants march armed. Ugandan Proverb.

123. A sheep does not lament the death of a goat’s kid. Ugandan Proverb.

124. Do not belittle what you did not cultivate. Ugandan Proverb.

125. Even the mightiest eagle comes down to the treetops to rest. Ugandan Proverb.

126. He who hunts two rats, catches none. Ugandan Proverb.

127. Empty hands only please their owner. Ugandan Proverb.

128. If he has thrown the only spear, he had at you, it means that he doesn’t fear you. Ugandan Proverb.

129. It is better that trials come to you in the beginning and you find peace afterwards than that they come to you at the end. Ugandan Proverb.

130. If you climb up a tree, you must climb down the same tree. Ugandan Proverb.

131. Don’t blame God for creating the tiger. instead, thank him for not giving it wings. Ethiopian Proverb.

132. A Coffee and love taste best when hot. Ethiopian Proverb.

133. The calves do not fear the horns of their mother. Ethiopian Proverb.

134. A bird hanging between two branches will get bitten on both wings. Ethiopian Proverb.

135. A close friend can become a close enemy. Ethiopian Proverb.

136. A belt fastened while running will come undone while running. Ethiopian Proverb.

137. A fool looks for dung where the cow never browsed. Ethiopian Proverb.

138. A hyena intrudes through a gap a dog opened. Ethiopian Proverb.

139. A loose tooth will not rest until it is pulled out. Ethiopian Proverb.

140. A fool will pair an ox with an elephant. Ethiopian Proverb.

141. A chattering bird builds no nest. South African Proverb.

142. An Elder does not break wind in public, but in a latrine. South African Proverb.

143. A termite grows up in dry wood, and yet comes to maturity. South African Proverb.

144. Before you milk a cow tie it up. South African Proverb.

145. If he keeps on imitating everybody the monkey will one day cut his own throat. South African Proverb.

146. If your buttocks burn, you know you have done wrong. South African Proverb.

147. It is the snake that smells the rat. South African Proverb.

148. No one drinks medicine on behalf of a sick person. South African Proverb.

149. One who enters a hut does not smell the termites roasting in the boiler. South African Proverb.

150. The heart is like a goat that has to be tied up. South African Proverb.

151. A man shows his character by what he laughs at. Swazi Proverb.

152. The antelope that is constantly moving will fall in a pit. Swazi Proverb.

153. A person born to be a flower pot will not go beyond the porch. Swazi Proverb.

154. A tree is best measured when it’s down. Swazi Proverb.

155. Never beat a snake if you haven’t seen its head. Swazi Proverb.

156. When a Gorilla is in power, the monkeys are happy. Swazi Proverb.

157. The bee that is forced into the hive will not produce honey. Swazi Proverb.

158. A traveller to distant places should make no enemies. Swazi Proverb.

159. An idle brain is the devil’s workshop. Swazi Proverb.

160. A runaway monk never speaks well of his convent. Swazi Proverb.

161. Cattle are born with ears; their horns grow later. Lesotho Proverb.

162. If you are a flag follow the wind. Lesotho Proverb.

163. Do not laugh at the snake because it walks on its belly. Lesotho Proverb.

164. Youths talk first and then listen; the elderly listen and then talk. Lesotho Proverb.

165. One does not follow the footprints in the water. Lesotho Proverb.

166. Cattle lick each other because they know each other. Lesotho Proverb.

167. An elephant does not die of one broken rib. Lesotho Proverb.

168. When a ripe fruit sees an honest man, it drops. Lesotho Proverb.

169. A farmer who doesn’t work in the rain or under the sun has nothing to harvest at the end of the farming year. Lesotho Proverb.

170. Houses built close together burn together. Lesotho Proverb.

171. Tomorrow is pregnant and no-one knows what she will give birth to. Eritrean Proverb.

172. If an enemy learns your dance, he or she dances it the crooked way. Eritrean Proverb.

173. An owl farted and demanded to be praised by his kinsmen; they mocked him that it is not right to dance to an abomination. Eritrean Proverb.

174. He who pursues a chicken often falls but the chicken has to continue running. Eritrean Proverb.

175. When you throw a stone at God, it lands right on top of your head. Eritrean Proverb.

176. A fool is a wise man’s ladder. Eritrean Proverb.

177. Dreamers remember their dreams when they are in trouble. Eritrean Proverb.

178. The one chased away with a club comes back, but the one chased away with reason does not. Eritrean Proverb.

179. A fly that doesn’t listen to advice usually follows the corpse into the grave. Eritrean Proverb.

180. If you hear a mad man talking, wait for a minute and you will soon hear what makes people think he is mad. Eritrean Proverb.

181. Suffering in search of truth gives true meaning to the truth. Egyptian Proverb.

182. Seek to perform your duties to your highest ability, this way your actions will be blameless. Egyptian Proverb.

183. A back does not break from bending. Egyptian Proverb.

184. A blow to another’s purse is like a blow to a mountain of sand. Egyptian Proverb.

185. A man with two ears can be supported by two words. Egyptian Proverb.

186. A borrowed coat does not keep one warm. Egyptian Proverb.

187. Be patient with a bad neighbour. Maybe he’ll leave or a disaster will take him out. Egyptian Proverb.

188. Because we focused on the snake, we missed the scorpion. Egyptian Proverb.

189. Believe the liar up to the door of his house and no further than that. Egyptian Proverb.

190. Cover your candle, it will light more. Egyptian Proverb.

191. Two men in a burning house must not stop to argue. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

192. A good wind is no use to a sailor who doesn’t know his direction. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

193. Wherever a man goes to dwell, his character goes with him. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

194. Your beauty will take you there, but your character will bring you back. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

195. A stubborn chicken learns its lesson in a hot pot of soup. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

196. The rabbit that stays in a hole must be ready to face the hunter’s fire. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

197. Never compete with the elephant in defecating. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

198. A wise man never knows all, only fools know everything. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

199. Before you buy shoes, measure your feet. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

200. The bush in which you hide has eyes. Equatorial Guinean Proverbs.

201. The tears running down your face do not blind you. Djibouti Proverb.

202. We do not kill a dog because of its barking. Djibouti Proverb.

203. The mighty tree falls and the little birds scatter in the bush. Djibouti Proverb.

204. What an adult sees from the ground, a boy cannot see even if he climbs a silk-cotton tree. Djibouti Proverb.

205. A wound inflicted by a friend does not heal. Djibouti Proverb.

206. Rather than get up and do a bad dance, stay put. Djibouti Proverb.

207. A guest who breaks the dishes of his host is not soon forgotten. Djibouti Proverb.

208. A lie has many variations, the truth none. Djibouti Proverb.

209. A camel never sees its own hump. Djibouti Proverb.

210. Clouds do not always mean rain, but smoke is a sure sign of fire. Djibouti Proverb.

211. However far the stream flows, it never forgets its source. Niger Proverb.

212. A proverb is the horse of conversation; when the conversation lags, a proverb revives it. Niger Proverb.

213. A friendship through the stomach will never die. Niger Proverb.

214. He who marries a beauty marries trouble. Niger Proverb.

215. He who does not mend his clothes will soon have none. Niger Proverb.

216. The rat cannot call the cat to account. Niger Proverb.

217. If a blind man says, “Let’s throw stones,” be assured that he has stepped on one. Niger Proverb.

218. If you fail to take away a strong man’s sword when he is on the ground, will you do it when he gets up? Niger Proverb.

219. If crocodiles eat their own eggs, what would they do to the flesh of a frog? Niger Proverb.

220. If you beat a lion, it is your own head that aches. Niger Proverb.

221. A bottle of oil warmed over the fire has no means of producing oil by itself. Nigerian Proverb.

222. A child does not die because the mother’s breasts are dry. Nigerian Proverb.

223. A man being short does not make him a boy. Nigerian Proverb.

224. Even if a goat has a frown face, it cannot lack a buyer at the market. Nigerian Proverb.

225. Hot anger is not capable of cooking yams. Nigerian Proverb.

226. A diviner cannot accurately divine his own future. Nigerian Proverb.

227. A clay pot of water is never hot-tempered. Nigerian Proverb.

228. A fight between grasshoppers is a joy to the crow. Nigerian Proverb.

229. A goat owned by two people sleeps outside. Nigerian Proverb.

230. A hunter who has only one arrow does not shoot with a careless aim. Nigerian Proverb.

231. The heart of a fool is in his mouth; the mouth of a wise man is in his heart. Moroccan Proverb.

232. Even the loftiest of mountains begins on the ground. Moroccan Proverb.

233. If a man puts a cord around his neck, God will provide someone to pull it. Moroccan Proverb.

234. A book is like a garden in the pocket. Moroccan Proverb.

235. A dog on the run is safely kicked. Moroccan Proverb.

236. A garden without a fence is like a dog without a tail. Moroccan Proverb.

237. A narrow space looks wide to the narrow-minded. Moroccan Proverb.

238. A wise woman has much to say and yet remains silent. Moroccan Proverb.

239. Among walnuts, only the empty one speaks. Moroccan Proverb.

240. Believe what you see and lay aside what you hear. Moroccan Proverb.

241. The bull defending his own head breaks his horns. Mauritian Proverb.

242. The monkey never watches his own tail; he watches his neighbour’s. Mauritian Proverb.

243. You do not give hyena meat to watch over. Mauritian Proverb.

244. The cleverness of one alone is a shallow well that soon dries up. Mauritian Proverb.

245. A hen cannot lay eggs and hatch them in the same day. Mauritian Proverb.

246. When a leader changes mood, followers change the place of their abode. Mauritian Proverb.

247. A person who has not secured a place on the floor should not begin to look for a mat. Mauritian Proverb.

248. When the head is too big, it cannot dodge blows. Mauritian Proverb.

249. The chameleon looks in all directions before moving. Mauritian Proverb.

250. When a frog lies on its back, it means something has happened to it. Mauritian Proverb.

251. Two eyes see better than one. Mauritanian Proverb.

252. A cutting word is worse than a bowstring; a cut may heal, but the cut of the tongue does not. Mauritanian Proverb.

253. He who begins a conversation does not foresee the end. Mauritanian Proverb.

254. Before eating, open thy mouth. Mauritanian Proverb.

255. It is only the water that is spilt; the calabash is not broken. Mauritanian Proverb.

256. He who loves money must labour. Mauritanian Proverb.

257. If you watch your pot, your food will not burn. Mauritanian Proverb.

258. He who has no spoon will burn his hands. Mauritanian Proverb.

259. Too large a morsel chokes the child. Mauritanian Proverb.

260. Before one cooks, one must have the meat. Mauritanian Proverb.

261. A canoe does not know who the leader is; when it turns over, everyone gets wet. Malian Proverb.

262. When mosquitoes work, they bite and then they sing. Malian Proverb.

263. A turtle is not proud of his long neck. Malian Proverb.

264. A deaf man may not have heard the thunder but he surely will see the rain. Malian Proverb.

265. A woman who offers sex to everyone will get kicked by everyone. Malian Proverb.

266. The hyena chasing two antelopes at the same time will go to bed hungry. Malian Proverb.

267. You cannot wage war without the sound of gunpowder. Malian Proverb.

268. If God gave the swallow nothing else, he gave him swiftness in turning. Malian Proverb.

269. A leader is a donkey for others to ride. Malian Proverb.

270. A rooster is not expected to crow for the whole world. Malian Proverb.

271. Like the chameleon, one eye on the future, one eye on the past. Malagasy Proverb.

272. Truth is like sugar cane; even if you chew it for a long time, it is still sweet. Malagasy Proverb.

273. However little food we have, we’ll share it even if it’s only one locust. Malagasy Proverb.

274. Whichever hand is cut; the whole body feels the pain. Malagasy Proverb.

275. Don’t praise your wife before a year. Malagasy Proverb.

276. Don’t kick a sleeping dog. Malagasy Proverb.

277. The end of an ox is beef, and the end of a lie is grief. Malagasy Proverb.

278. Love is like young rice: transplanted, still, it grows. Malagasy Proverb.

279. Don’t be so much in love that you can’t tell when the rain comes. Malagasy Proverb.

280. Life is a shadow and a mist; it passes quickly by and is no more. Malagasy Proverb.

281. Little by little grow the bananas. Congo Proverb.

282. No matter how long the night, the day is sure to come. Congo Proverb.

283. To love someone who does not love you is like shaking a tree to make the dew drops fall. Congo Proverb.

284. A single bracelet does not jingle. Congo Proverb.

285. All monkeys cannot hang on the same branch. Congo Proverb.

286. Even if skinny, an elephant dares not cross over a grass bridge. Congo Proverb.

287. If one is roasting two potatoes, one of them is bound to get charred. Congo Proverb.

288. The lizard runs so fast that it overtakes its own hole. Congo Proverb.

289. If a lion eats a bad fellow today and it is not killed, tomorrow it will eat a good one. Congo Proverb.

290. The thief is the one who is caught. Congo Proverb.

291. People do not like people but they love people’s money. Ivorian Proverb.

292. The stranger has big eyes but he doesn’t see anything. Ivorian Proverb.

293. In the villages where there are no oxen, the sheep’s feet seem strong. Ivorian Proverb.

294. No trees bore fruits without having first flowers. Ivorian Proverb.

295. The twig that falls in the water will never become a fish. Ivorian Proverb.

296. He who talks incessantly talks nonsense. Ivorian Proverb.

297. A little leaven smoother away the whole lump. Ivorian Proverb.

298. The panther and the sheep never hunt together. Ivorian Proverb.

299. If you are not going to bite, don’t show your teeth. Ivorian Proverb.

300. The lazy man is jealous of the one who works and succeeds. Ivorian Proverb.

Indigenous African Sayings

A collection of indigenous African sayings rich in wisdom to teach you how to live life and with others in society.

301. If there is no traitor in your house, the witches will never be able to get at you. Togolese Proverb.

302. Every rhinoceros is proud of its horn. Togolese Proverb.

303. A woman’s tongue is sharp enough to pierce the toughest flesh. Togolese Proverb.

304. He who has diarrhoea knows the direction of the door without being told. Togolese Proverb.

305. A piece of wood that has been burned easily catches fire. Togolese Proverb.

306. Faeces are the food of flies. Togolese Proverb.

307. You can’t scare a monkey with a dead baboon. Togolese Proverb.

308. God exercises vengeance in silence. Togolese Proverb.

309. In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength. Togolese Proverb.

310. Not all those who are old are wise. Togolese Proverb.

311. If the full moon loves you, why worry about the stars. Tunisian Proverb.

312. A bull went to impregnate a cow, and he came back a fetus. Tunisian Proverb.

313. He who spends a night with a chicken will cackle in the morning. Tunisian Proverb.

314. If he gives you a rope, ties him with it. Tunisian Proverb.

315. If someone hits you with a stone, hit him with bread; your bread will return to you and his stone will return to him. Tunisian Proverb.

316. If the tail of the dog can save me, I don’t care about its stench. Tunisian Proverb.

317. He who is covered with other people’s clothes is naked. Tunisian Proverb.

318. He who wants to be famous will have many a sleepless night. Tunisian Proverb.

319. The only difference between the cucumber and water is the moving of the teeth. Tunisian Proverb.

320. We praised the bride, and she was found pregnant. Tunisian Proverb.

321. You can win a woman with lies but you cannot feed her with lies. Comoros Proverb.

322. Death is like an eagle that snatches away a chick and leaves its mother in tears. Comoros Proverb.

323. The spider moves only inside its web. Comoros Proverb.

324. A thread follows the path of the needle. Comoros Proverb.

325. The elephant never abandons his tusks on the road, however heavy they may be. Comoros Proverb.

326. Where there are riches, thieves abound; if the riches are large, the thieves are as big. Comoros Proverb.

327. A chicken with a beautiful plumage does not sit in a corner. Comoros Proverb.

328. If you steal while you carry your son on your back, you teach him to steal. Comoros Proverb.

329. A whistle will not call back a dog that has escaped from the leash. Comoros Proverb.

330. A slippery person is not a king. Comoros Proverb.

331. The lion’s power lies in our fear of him. Chadian Proverb.

332. When the leading animal is lame, the herd fails to get to the pasture. Chadian Proverb.

333. When the baobab tree has fallen, the goats start climbing it. Chadian Proverb.

334. Every cock is a town crier in his own dung heap. Chadian Proverb.

335. The shepherd of a herd of toads must be very patient with his rod. Chadian Proverb.

336. In its own nest, the beetle is king. Chadian Proverb.

337. If the cockroach wants to rule over the chicken, then it must hire the fox as a body-guard. Chadian Proverb.

338. The jungle is stronger than the elephant. Chadian Proverb.

339. A cockerel fears the cockerel that removes its feathers. Chadian Proverb.

340. If birds travel without coordination, they beat each other’s wings. Chadian Proverb.

341. It is better to irrigate all seeds because you do not know which one will bear fruits first. Central African Republic Proverb.

342. The fruits of blessings grow on trees of hardship. Central African Republic Proverb.

343. The elephant does not limp when walking on thorns. Central African Republic Proverb.

344. The sheep with a strong master sleeps with his tail outside the house. Central African Republic Proverb.

345. Even in old age, the lion lives with power and strength. Central African Republic Proverb.

346. An army of sheep led by a lion can defeat an army of lions led by a sheep. Central African Republic Proverb.

347. It is better to be a lion for a day than a sheep all your life. Central African Republic Proverb.

348. Even the lion, the king of the forest, protects himself against flies. Central African Republic Proverb.

349. A house cannot be repaired when the owner is destroying it. Central African Republic Proverb.

350. The elephant can trip over a creeping plant. Central African Republic Proverb.

351. The cock crows proudly on his own dunghill. Cape Verdean Proverb.

352. The bat hangs downwards because of the words told it by the sun. Cape Verdean Proverb.

353. The dog’s happy dream produces no meat. Cape Verdean Proverb.

354. Whoever tells the truth is chased out of nine villages. Cape Verdean Proverb.

355. An ageing man gets closer to his land and an ageing husband closer to his wife. Cape Verdean Proverb.

356. If a baboon could see his behind, he’d laugh also. Cape Verdean Proverb.

357. In new surroundings, the hen walks on one leg. Cape Verdean Proverb.

358. Rats don’t dance in the cat’s doorway. Cape Verdean Proverb.

359. The pot is not tired of cooking. Cape Verdean Proverb.

360. The house of the heart is never full. Cape Verdean Proverb.

361. A building of sand falls as you build it. Cameroonian Proverb.

362. Beauty is an empty calabash. Cameroonian Proverb.

363. By trying often, the monkey learns to jump from the tree. Cameroonian Proverb.

364. However little you think of the elephant, you can’t say it won’t fill a pot. Cameroonian Proverb.

365. Knowledge is better than riches. Cameroonian Proverb.

366. If you do not step on the dog’s tail, he will not bite you. Cameroonian Proverb.

367. The heart of the wise man lies quiet like limpid water. Cameroonian Proverb.

368. When the vine entwines your roof, it is time to cut it down. Cameroonian Proverb.

369. An envious person requires no reason to practice envy. Cameroonian Proverb.

370. When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you. Cameroonian Proverb.

371. The high priced brings customers. Libyan Proverb.

372. The needle will be lost if the thread is too long. Libyan Proverb.

373. Who would tell the lion that his breath stinks? Libyan Proverb.

374. The naked man in the caravan has peace of mind. Libyan Proverb.

375. He who has luck will have the wind blow him his firewood. Libyan Proverb.

376. The flute player dies with his finger shaking. Libyan Proverb.

377. The absentee has his own justification. Libyan Proverb.

378. Walk with sandals till you get good shoes. Libyan Proverb.

379. Learn to shave by shaving orphans. Libyan Proverb.

380. In the house of a man who has been hanged don’t talk of rope. Libyan Proverb.

381. Don’t look where you fell, but where you slipped. Liberian Proverb.

382. If the walls were adamant, gold would take the town. Liberian Proverb.

383. Do not eat your chicken and throw its feathers in the front yard. Liberian Proverb.

384. Only when the tree is big and strong can you tether a cow to it. Liberian Proverb.

385. One single finger cannot pick a louse. Liberian Proverb.

386. It is better to fall while sitting than to fall while standing. Liberian Proverb.

387. When during a heavy downpour of rain, your bucket did not get filled, do you expect the dew to fill it? Liberian Proverb.

388. One cannot be at the mouth of a river and uses saliva to wash his hands. Liberian Proverb.

389. Anyone who was ever bitten by a snake, scares even a worm. Liberian Proverb.

390. Teeth and tongue can fight but they will never stop working together to eat. Liberian Proverb.

391. A friend who visits you when you are suffering is your best friend. Sudanese Proverb.

392. A stranger does not share the monkey. Sudanese Proverb.

393. A dog cannot carry its puppies on its back. Sudanese Proverb.

394. Ebb does not follow ebb. Flood is in between. Sudanese Proverb.

395. Even if a log lies in the water for a long time, it does not become a crocodile. Sudanese Proverb.

396. If a dog bites you and you don’t bite him back, it will say that you have no teeth. Sudanese Proverb.

397. If you are wearing shoes, you don’t fear the thorns. Sudanese Proverb.

398. If Nakedness promises you a piece of cloth, ask him his name. Sudanese Proverb.

399. If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping in a closed room with a mosquito. Sudanese Proverb.

400. Let rats shoot arrows at each other. Sudanese Proverb.

401. A camel can tolerate a heavy load, but not a crooked rope. Somalian Proverb.

402. A coward is full of precaution. Somalian Proverb.

403. An escaped lie does not reach the truth. Somalian Proverb.

404. Your previous lie damages your present truth. Somalian Proverb.

405. Your woman should be in the house or in the grave. Somalian Proverb.

406. You don’t go searching for bones in a lion’s den. Somalian Proverb.

407. Human beings are never without fault. Somalian Proverb.

408. A closed mouth is a gold. Somalian Proverb.

409. The absence of knowledge is the absence of light. Somalian Proverb.

410. The hare sits under one bush but looks out for another (to which it might run if endangered). Somalian Proverb.

411. Snails are not involved with anything concerning blood. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

412. No matter how you fix a chimpanzee’s nose, it’s still ugly. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

413. You can’t blow your nose and whistle at the same time. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

414. Don’t use my hand to remove palm kernels from the fire. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

415. However full the house, the hen finds a corner to lay in. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

416. Quarrels end, but words, once spoken never die. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

417. When they say a person burned to death, don’t ask if his beard burnt. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

418. The bird that knows is different from the bird that understands. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

419. A dog has no business climbing on the roof. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

420. You don’t need to teach a snake how to lie down. Sierra Leonean Proverb.

421. He who looks for honey must have the courage to face the bees. Seychelles Proverb.

422. A well-fed old lion is better than a hungry young one. Seychelles Proverb.

423. A dog that lives on the bank of a brook never tires of lapping the water. Seychelles Proverb.

424. A pygmy’s shadow is greater with the setting sun. Seychelles Proverb.

425. If the stomachache were in the foot, one would go lame. Seychelles Proverb.

426. If a little tree grows in the shade of a larger tree, it will die small. Seychelles Proverb.

427. The opportunity that God sends does not wake up him who is asleep. Seychelles Proverb.

428. A cow must graze where she is tied. Seychelles Proverb.

429. The monkey leaps only as far as it can reach. Seychelles Proverb.

430. When an elephant is in trouble even a frog will kick him. Seychelles Proverb.

431. A fool says what he knows, but a wise man knows what he says. Sao Tome Proverb.

432. A man does not wander far from where his corn is roasting. Sao Tome Proverb.

433. Someone who has a wound in the mouth knows that blood is salty. Sao Tome Proverb.

434. He who rides a tiger is afraid to dismount. Sao Tome Proverb.

435. The crocodile finds refuge in the river when it starts to rain. Sao Tome Proverb.

436. The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives. Sao Tome Proverb.

437. Misfortunes come on horseback and depart on foot. Sao Tome Proverb.

438. Those who sleep with dogs will rise with fleas. Sao Tome Proverb.

439. A dog in desperation will leap over a wall. Sao Tome Proverb.

440. A good anvil does not fear the hammer. Sao Tome Proverb.

441. A rotten fish pollutes the whole kitchen. Senegalese Proverb.

442. An intelligent enemy is worth more than a stupid friend. Senegalese Proverb.

443. All birds will flock to a fruitful tree. Senegalese Proverb.

444. Even Buddhist priests of the same temple quarrel occasionally. Senegalese Proverb.

445. Haste and hurry can only bear children with many regrets along the way. Senegalese Proverb.

446. Spilled water is better than a broken jar. Senegalese Proverb.

447. It is better to travel alone than with a bad companion. Senegalese Proverb.

448. If you speak, speak to him who understands you. Senegalese Proverb.

449. The truth is like gold; keep it locked up and you will find it exactly as you first put it away. Senegalese Proverb.

450. He may say that he loves you. Wait and see what he does for you. Senegalese Proverb.

african sayings

451. He who has travelled alone can tell what he likes. Rwandese Proverb.

452. Hens keep quiet when the cock is around. Rwandese Proverb.

453. What itches in the daughter’s skirt, itches also in her mother’s. Rwandese Proverb.

454. The elephants fight, but it is the grass that suffers. Rwandese Proverb.

455. If you want to own cows you must sleep in the fields with them. Rwandese Proverb.

456. A message is given to many, but those who are meant to understand, understand. Rwandese Proverb.

457. In a court of fowls, the cockroach never wins his case. Rwandese Proverb.

458. You set the trap after the rat has passed. Rwandese Proverb.

459. You can outdistance that which is running after you, but not what is running inside you. Rwandese Proverb.

460. You can take the boy out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the boy. Rwandese Proverb.

461. The tortoise is friends with the snail: those with shells keep their shells close together. Beninese Proverb.

462. Anyone who sees beauty and does not look at it will soon be poor. Beninese Proverb.

463. When the mouse laughs at the car, there is a hole nearby. Beninese Proverb.

464. Silence is an attribute of the dead; he who is alive speaks. Beninese Proverb.

465. Fear a silent man. He has lips like a drum. Beninese Proverb.

466. The young cannot teach tradition to the old. Beninese Proverb.

467. Who throws stones at night, kills his own brother. Beninese Proverb.

468. Before you ask a man for clothes, look at the clothes that he is wearing. Beninese Proverb.

469. Many words do not fill a basket. Beninese Proverb.

470. The misfortune that comes into town does not wear a turban. Beninese Proverb.

471. Do bad and remember, do good and forget. Algerian Proverb.

472. A secret for two is soon a secret for nobody. Algerian Proverb.

473. Speak kindly or refrain from talking. Algerian Proverb.

474. One hand can’t applaud. Algerian Proverb.

475. Peace wins over wealth. Algerian Proverb.

476. The soft tongue is sucked by the lioness. Algerian Proverb.

477. They only fall asleep after having mutually taken an oath and then they betray each other. Algerian Proverb.

478. You know who your friend and your enemy are during difficult moments. Algerian Proverb.

479. When I think of the other’s misfortunes, I forget mine. Algerian Proverb.

480. The one whose belly isn’t full of straw isn’t afraid of fire. Algerian Proverb.

481. To have two eyes is cause for pride, but to have one eye is better than to have none. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

482. A camel does not joke about the hump of another camel. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

483. Around a flowering tree, one finds many insects. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

484. Singing “Halleluiah” everywhere does not prove piety. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

485. The bitter heart eats its owner. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

486. Too much discussion means a quarrel. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

487. If a dead tree falls, it carries with it a live one. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

488. The toad likes water, but not when it’s boiling. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

489. The stomach has no holiday. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

490. No one tests the depth of a river with both feet unless he is prepared to swim. Guinea Bissau Proverb.

491. He who has done evil expects evil. Guinean Proverb.

492. A cow that has no tail should not try to chase away flies. Guinean Proverb.

493. No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. Guinean Proverb.

494. He who does not cultivate his field will die of hunger. Guinean Proverb.

495. When a needle falls into a deep well, many people will look into the well but few will be ready to go down after it. Guinean Proverb.

496. It is God who drives away flies for the tailless animal. Guinean Proverb.

497. Save your fowl before it stops flapping. Guinean Proverb.

498. When you wait for tomorrow it never comes. When you don’t wait for it tomorrow still comes. Guinean Proverb.

499. The man who can’t dance says the band can’t play. Guinean Proverb.

500. To make preparations does not spoil the trip. Guinean Proverb.

501. A child who is to be successful is not reared exclusively on a bed of down. Ghanaian Proverb.

502. A knife does not know who is its master. Ghanaian Proverb.

503. A woman is a flower in a garden; her husband is the fence around it. Ghanaian Proverb.

504. By going and coming, a bird weaves its nest. Ghanaian Proverb.

505. It is the wife who knows her husband. Ghanaian Proverb.

506. If you are in hiding, don’t light a fire. Ghanaian Proverb.

507. Hunger knows no bounds. It is felt by both a slave and a king. Ghanaian Proverb.

508. By the time the fool has learned the game, the players have dispersed. Ghanaian Proverb.

509. Fire and gunpowder do not sleep together. Ghanaian Proverb.

510. If God breaks your leg, He will teach you how to limp. Ghanaian Proverb.

511. What is said over the dead lion’s body cannot be said to him alive. Gabonese Proverb.

512. Rain does not fall on one roof alone. Gabonese Proverb.

513. You are beautiful, but learn to work for you cannot eat your beauty. Gabonese Proverb.

514. Restless feet may walk into a snake pit. Gabonese Proverb.

515. To one who does not know, a small garden is a forest. Gabonese Proverb.

516. The witness of a rat is another rat. Gabonese Proverb.

517. The frog wanted to be as big as the elephant and burst. Gabonese Proverb.

518. When spider webs unite, they can tie up a lion. Gabonese Proverb.

519. I have a cow in the sky but cannot drink milk. Gabonese Proverb.

520. When a fool is cursed, he thinks that he is being praised. Gabonese Proverb.

521. Giant silk-cotton trees grow out of very tiny seeds. Gambian Proverb.

522. A fly that has no one to advise it, follows the corpse into the grave. Gambian Proverb.

523. However black a cow is, the milk is always white. Gambian Proverb.

524. An adult squatting sees farther than a child on top of the tree. Gambian Proverb.

525. He who sleeps on a borrowed mat is sleeping on a cold, very cold ground. Gambian Proverb.

526. If you stir up the water in the pond, you will bring up the mud. Gambian Proverb.

527. Before healing others, heal yourself. Gambian Proverb.

528. People get fed up even with honey. Gambian Proverb.

529. The plant protected by God is never hurt by the wind. Gambian Proverb.

530. Never mind if your nose is ugly as long as you can breathe through it. Gambian Proverb.

531. Friendship is a furrow in the sand if you stop to remake it disappears. Burkina Faso Proverb.

532. An axe does not cut down a tree by itself. Burkina Faso Proverb.

533. If you haven’t been to two marketplaces, you don’t know which the best value is. Burkina Faso Proverb.

534. After beating milk, butter is obtained. Burkina Faso Proverb.

535. Knowledge is power. Burkina Faso Proverb.

536. Ants surround the dying elephant. Burkina Faso Proverb.

537. Only a thief can recognize the trace of another thief on a rock. Burkina Faso Proverb.

538. Your wife is for you alone, do not share her with strangers. Burkina Faso Proverb.

539. The hand that is on top is better than the hand that is below. Burkina Faso Proverb.

540. As long as the water does not disorder, it does not settle. Burkina Faso Proverb.

541. Unity is strength, the division is weakness. African Proverb.

542. When spiders unite, they can tie down a Lion. African Proverb.

543. No matter the economy of the jungle, the Lion will never eat grass. African Proverb.

544. Many hands make light work. African Proverb.

545. If the young men are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth. African Proverb.

546. A broom is sturdy because its strands are tightly bound. African Proverb.

547. Ashes fly back into the face of him who threw them. African Proverb.

548. If you are filled with pride, you will have no room for wisdom. African Proverb.

549. When a home is burnt down, the rebuilt one is more beautiful. African Proverb.

550. It takes the whole village to raise a child. African Proverb.

551. A climber plant will never fail to get another to climb up. Tonga Proverb.

552. A relish comprising of fish is eaten with great care. Tonga Proverb.

553. A canoe does not wait for a passenger but a passenger should wait for it at the ford. Tonga Proverb.

554. A relish tastes good because of the salt. Tonga Proverb.

555. A tortoise survives if not seen by the people. Tonga Proverb.

556. Promiscuity is as nice as a bullfrog; once tasted it’s difficult to abstain from it. Tonga Proverb.

557. Birds that eat fig fruits give each other chances. Tonga Proverb.

558. Stupidity is a shade while cleverness passes. Tonga Proverb.

559. Baboons shared the chaff. Tonga Proverb.

560. Where a tail develops it does not itch. Tonga Proverb.

561. When the dawn broke, they were looking for you. Luvale Proverb.

562. A fat woman warms even the coldest the night. Zambian Proverb.

563. A tender bamboo cannot be eagerly desired for building. Zambian Proverb.

564. A woman without teeth shall be left to the lions. Zambian Proverb.

565. Do not look at a visitor’s face but at his stomach. Zambian Proverb.

566. He who paddles two canoes, sinks. Zambian Proverb.

567. He who has a fever is not shown to the fire. Zambian Proverb.

568. It is inevitable that two thighs will rub against each other. Zambian Proverb.

569. Let your love be like the misty rain, coming softly, but flooding the river. North African Proverb.

570. The tears running down your face do not blind you. North African Proverb.

571. A hippopotamus can be made invisible in dark water. West African Proverb.

572. Words are sweet, but they never take the place of food. West African Proverb.

573. Don’t insult the crocodile until you cross the water. West African Proverb.

574. It is the calm and silent water that drowns a man. West African Proverb.

575. The day a man tastes the sweetness of a woman, that day he also tastes the bitterness. West African Proverb.

576. We should talk while we are still alive. West African Proverb.

577. The rain does not recognize anyone as a friend, it drenches all equally. West African Proverb.

578. One who enters a forest does not listen to the breaking of the twigs in the brush. Zambian Proverb.

579. The shark who has eaten cannot swim with the shark that is hungry. African Proverb.

580. Treat the days well and they will treat you well. African Proverb.

581. When you run alone, you run fast. When you run together, you run far. African Proverb.

582. Your feet will take you away from home, but your stomach will always bring you back. African Proverb.

583. You have to look after wealth, but knowledge looks after you. African Proverb.

584. When you show the moon to a child, it sees only your finger. African Proverb.

585. Do not stand in the place of danger trusting miracles. African Proverb.

586. He that beat the drum for the mad man is no better than the mad man himself. African Proverb.

587. If the child leans the trail of a snake, he will also learn the wanderings of the snake. African Proverb.

588. The sun does not forget the village just because it’s small. African Proverb.

589. If you think education is expensive, try ignorance. African Proverb.

590. Those who have crossed the river should not laugh at those who are drowning. African Proverb.

591. A strategy is better than strength. African Proverb.

592. Every closed eye is not sleeping and every open eye is not seeing. African Proverb.

593. It is the one who lives in the house who knows where the roof is leaking. African Proverb.

594. A patient man will eat ripe fruit. African Proverb.

595. A lie has many variations but the truth has none. African Proverb.

596. Grass does not grow faster if you pull on it. African Proverb.

597. Kindness to all, friendship to few. African Proverb.

598. A tree is known by its fruit. African Proverb.

599. At the bottom of patience, one finds heaven. African Proverb.

600. A man who cries all the time is not heard. African Proverb.


These are all the comprehensive list of African proverbs I had to share with you in this epic post and I hope you enjoyed them and found some wisdom in them.

You don’t need to memorize all the 600 African proverbs and African sayings you have read in this article. Two or three which resonate with you are more than enough.

Having read these African proverbs about life, wisdom, I now expect you to be wise and live wisely and not to live carelessly after reading this post.

Remember, life is short not to make the most out of it and let the African proverbs you have read in this post be that reminder by applying them in your life.

In conclusion, kindly share this post with everyone you know as they will benefit greatly as well. Sharing is caring. Cheers and have a blessed life.

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