I have this thing with proverbs and sayings in different languages. I love to see how different they are regarding the cultural context. I’ve gathered some of the best (I am talking subjectively) Moroccan proverbs for you. First there’s the Moroccan saying followed by literal meaning and then the proper explanation. Enjoy!
- Ila kan Sahbak 3sal La Tla3koush Kolo. Literally: If you have a friend like honey, don’t eat him.
It means that we should never abuse someone’s help and good heart. If you have a friend that is always there for you, don’t use him when you don’t need his help.
- Taht Sam3a 3al9o El Hajam. Literally: If the minaret falls, blame the barber.
Used when an innocent person is to blame for something that they haven’t done.
- El fahem yafham. Literally: The smart understood.
Used when we leave something for people to understand without giving them an explanation. We hope the wise ones will get what we meant.
- Sayad En3amaYal9aha Yal9aha. Literally: The hunter of the ostrich will find it.
Whatever you seek, don’t give up and you will find it. All we need is patience.
- Al Mousawa9 Men Bara Ash Kh Barak Men L Dakhel. Literally: Beautiful outside, but what’s wrong with inside?
Used to describe people who are two-faced; their appearance tells you they are good, but in real they are bad to the bone. A person that you can’t really trust; someone who disappointed you with their behavior. For example: pretending to be someone’s friend and backbites them when they are not around.
Inspired by tales of Mehdi el Ghaly from Hikayat Morocco. Thank you.
Learn Moroccan Arabic with these books I’ve picked on Amazon:
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