English Proverbs and Their Meanings

Proverbs are phrases that convey the belief, culture, feeling and thought structures of societies. Many times, you use proverbs that are vague but have been used for generations to this day to express your feelings and thoughts that you do not want to express at length. You refer to the testimony of proverbs in our conversations. You can use proverbs to express thoughts wisely in English as well as in Turkish.

English proverbs and their meanings are among the most important issues that will contribute to the development of your language knowledge. Knowing a lot of proverbs helps you easily understand the books you read, the magazines, the news you listen to. The more proverbs you know, the greater your ability to use English. Let’s take a look at the English proverbs and their meanings that will take your English language skills to the next level and meet frequently.

  1. A bad workman always blames his tools.

Meaning: When a poor worker fails to perform the task successfully, he holds the tools or external factors he uses responsible for his failure.

  1. A ‌bird in ‌hand is ‌worth ‌two in ‌the ‌bush.

Meaning: Things that we have are worth more than what we hope to achieve.

  1. A ‌cat has nine ‌lives.

Meaning: We can use this proverb for people who get into trouble but can handle it easily.

  1. A ‌chain is ‌only as ‌strong as ‌its ‌weakest link.

Meaning: Something (an organization, etc.) no matter how strong it is, it can lose all his strength because of a weak spot.

5‌. Action ‌speaks ‌louder ‌than ‌words.

Meaning: Actions reflect human character better because it is easier to say something but it is difficult to reflect your words onto your actions.

6‌. Adversity ‌and ‌loss ‌make a ‌man ‌wise.

Meaning: Compared to times when we are in happiness and abundance, hard times make us mature.

7‌. All ‌good ‌things ‌come ‌to an ‌end.

Meaning: Good things end somehow.

8. An ‌empty ‌vessel ‌makes ‌much ‌noise.

Meaning: Stupid and fool people talk a lot more.

9. An ‌idle ‌brain is ‌the devil’s ‌workshop.

Meaning: If you have nothing to do, you’ll probably think about doing bad things.

10. A ‌rolling ‌stone ‌gathers ‌no ‌moss.

Meaning: The constant work and the relocation gives the persons an advantage in taking less responsibility but this deprives them of the chance to lead an orderly life.

11.As ‌you ‌sow, ‌so ‌you ‌shall ‌reap.

Meaning: Your actions, good or bad, determine the outcome you will encounter.

‌12. Barking ‌dogs ‌seldom bite.

Meaning: People who vociferous and act threatening rarely do harm.

13. Bad news travels fast.

Meaning: Bad news spreads quickly among people.

1‌4. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Meaning: Beauty is a relative concept, it varies from person to person.

15. Best ‌things in life ‌are ‌free.

Meaning: You don’t usually have to pay for the most valuable things in life.

‌16. Better ‌late ‌than ‌‌never.

Meaning: Getting something you want late is better than not getting it at all.

1‌7. Blood is ‌thicker ‌than ‌water.

Meaning: Relationships with family and relatives are stronger than relationships with friends or other people.

18. Curiosity killed the cat.

Meaning: Too much curiosity can cause problems.

1‌9. Clothes do not ‌make ‌the ‌‌man.

Meaning: Do not judge a man by his appearance. Someone who looks so good on the outside might not be so good.

20. Don’t bite ‌off ‌more ‌than ‌you can ‌chew.

Meaning: Don’t take more responsibility than you can handle. Don’t get in over your head.

21. Don’t put off tomorrow what you can do today.

Meaning: You should complete your work on time and should not postpone it.

2‌2. Easy ‌come, ‌easy ‌go.

Meaning: Things that easy to get are easy to lose.

2‌3. Fortune ‌favours ‌the ‌brave.

Meaning: If you execute your plans boldly, it is possible that chance will be on your side.

2‌4. Grief ‌divided is ‌made ‌lighter.

Meaning: If you share your grief and grief with your relatives, you can alleviate it.

2‌5. Ignorance is ‌bliss.

Meaning: It’s a relief to know less about something. The more your knowledge, the more your anxiety.

26. He who laughs last, laughs best.

Meaning: The joys at the beginning of a task are temporary, but the happiness that comes along with the success of the business is real.

27. In unity, there is strength.

Meaning: The work that is done in unity and togetherness results better.

28. Love is blind.

Meaning: The person who falls in love doesn’t see the flaws of the one he loves.

29. Money does not grow on trees.

Meaning: You have to work to make money.

30. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Meaning: To make a profit from something, you have to make an effort.

31. Strike while the iron is hot.

Meaning: In order for a job to be done, it is necessary to take action at the most appropriate time.

32. The pen is mightier than the sword.

Meaning: Expressing things by writing is more effective than using brute force.

33. The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.

Meaning: Making a good dish is one of the most effective ways to win a man’s love.

34. The harder you work, the luckier you get.

Meaning: Working hard increases your chances of getting what you want.

35. The show must go on.

Meaning: Although problems might occur at the beginning, it is necessary to continue the work.

36. Two heads are better than one.

Meaning: Collaborating with others to do a job gives better results.

37. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Meaning: You can see whether something is real or not through the emerging signs. If there’s a sign, people believe it’s real.

38. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.

Meaning: Whoever is willing to do a job, will find a way to do it.

39. What goes around comes around.

Meaning: If you treat one person badly, someone else also will treat you badly.

40. You never know what you can do till you try.

Meaning: In order for a person to discover his or her abilities, he or she has to keep trying things.

Now that you have learned the meanings and detailed explanations of many proverbs used in English, you can use these proverbs in your correspondence or when communicating with foreign friends. English Ninjas is the right address if you want to improve and use your English more effectively. Don’t miss the opportunity to practice with native English instructors on the English Ninjas platform to take your English to the next level.

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