Sunday, February 12, 2006

Sumerian Proverbs for Young Children

Copying proverbs and quotations is a big part of classical schooling. You can easily find proverbs from the Bible to copy, but what about other cultures? I'm compiling a list of suitable proverbs from Pagan sources. If you have any you would like me to add, please send them in.

If you lie and then tell the truth, the truth will be considered a lie.

He who walks with truth brings life.

A man who behaves like a damp reed towards his fellow men does not tell the truth either.

When a dishonest boat is sailing, it runs aground.

Wealth is hard to come by, but poverty is always at hand.

He acquires many things, he must keep close watch over them.

He who eats too much will not be able to sleep.

The fox could not build his own house, and so he came to the house of his friend as a building contractor.

All the households of the poor are not equally submissive.

In an open mouth, a fly enters.

Friendship lasts a day, family lasts forever.

"Though I still have bread left over, I will eat your bread!" Will this endear a man to the household of his friend?

What comes from the heart is known by the heart.

A heart never created hatred; speech created hatred.

Marry according to your choice. Have children to your heart's content.

Marrying is human. Having children is divine.

To be sick is acceptable; to be pregnant is painful; but to be pregnant and sick is just too much.

The poor man must always look to his next meal.

The poor man chews whatever he is given.

A scribe who does not know how to grasp the meaning -- from where will he produce a translation?

One does not marry a three-year-old wife, as a donkey does.

Two Akkadians lost a donkey. One went after it while the other wasted the day. The one who just sat around -- the fault was his.

In the city of the lame, the cripple is a messenger.

The house built by the upright man is destroyed by the treacherous man.

The mother of eight young men lies down exhausted.

If a household acquaintance has been exposed to harm, the matter is investigated.

Offerings are the glory of the gods.

He who insults is insulted. He who sneers is sneered at.

If the foreman does not know how to assign the work, his workers will not stop shaking their heads.

A man's personal god is a shepherd who finds pasturage for the man. Let him lead him like sheep to the food they can eat.

The sun never leaves my heart, which surpasses a garden.

When righteousness is cut off, injustice is increased.

What is placed in the fire has a valuable role to play but leaves nothing behind when it's gone.

Says the man lying on the roof to the man living in the house: "It is too bright up here!"

That which the thief has taken was made by an honest man.

The elephant said, "There is nothing like me among all the creatures of the world!" The wren answered, "But I, in my own small way, was created just as you were!"

The lion who lives a life of compassion will receive it.

Nine wolves having caught ten sheep, there was one too many and they did not know how to share out the portions. A fox came along and said: "Let me allocate the portions for you! The nine of you take one sheep. I by myself shall take nine -- this shall be my share!"

The shepherd cannot increase his flock where the wolf takes sheep.

A dog which is played with turns into a puppy.

Strength cannot keep pace with intelligence.

Ignoramuses are numerous in the palace.

Those who live near the water look into the mountains. They don't look in their own direction.

A loving heart builds houses. A hating heart destroys houses.

Don't choose a wife during a festival!

The dishonest man stole silver; the honest man will earn his pay.

A plant as sweet as a husband does not grow in the desert.

After becoming a thief, one becomes an outcast.

Whenever there is excess, an axe remedies it!

A man's waterskin is his life. A man's sandals are his eyes. A man's wife is his supervisor. A man's son is his protective shade. A man's daughter is his eager servant. A man's daughter-in-law is his policeman.

The litter was not apparent to the slave girl. To her mistress it just kept increasing.

I did not answer the curse uttered against me with a curse of my own. My answering a curse would be answered with another curse.

He who carries a light burden can dance.

To eat is good. When it comes up again, it is bad.

A troubled mind makes you sick.

The battle-club does not find out his name, it just finds his flesh.

Talking endlessly is what humankind has most on its mind.

The beloved true commander distributes the leadership.

To be wealthy and demand more is an insult to a god.

In the city with no dogs, the fox is boss.

A disgraced merchant becomes a con-man.

The dog understands: "Take it!" It does not understand: Put it down!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you. I have save them for now. I will be coping myself until the printer is up and going again.