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Albanian proverbs

Here are some proverbs and other well-known sayings in Albanian in alphabetical order. A (often literal) translation and the believed origin are also given.

Table of contents
1 A
2 B
3 C
5 D
6 E
7 F
8 G

A

A rrohet me zemėr tė lepurit? --South
Can you live with the heart of a rabit?

Ai qė ndėrton me djersė, mbron me gjak. --South
Who builds with sweat, defends with blood.

Ai qė pėrton sot, pendohet mot. --Vlore[?]
Who is lazy today, regrets it later.

Ai qė s'ka zemėr, s'ka as thembėr. --South
Who has no heart, has no heels.

Asht kollaj me ia pre bishtin ujkut tė vramė. --Shkoder[?]
It is easy to cut the tail of a dead wolf.

B

Balta -- m'ė ėmbėl se mjalta. --Vlore[?]
The mud [in Albania] is sweeter than honey [elsewhere]

Bujku i mirė, ia merr me zorr bukėn tokės. --Tropoje[?]
A good farmer takes with force the bread from the earth.

Burri nė shtėpi, si dreqi nė xhami. --Elbasan[?]
A man at home, like the devil in a mosque.

C

C'ma ka zemra, ma qit vena. --Shkoder[?]
What I have in my heart is brought out by the wine.

Cdo njeri ėshtė mbret nė shtėpinė e tij. --South
Every person is king in his own home.

Ē

Ēelėsi qė punon, nuk ndryshket. --Mallakaster[?]
The key that is not used does not rust.

D

Dembeli ėshtė nėna e tė gjithė veseve. --North
Lazyness is the mother of all bad habits.

Dera e pėrtimit, caku i mjerimit. --Librazhd
The door of lazyness is the is the boundary of suffering.

Dielli, edhe kur ka re, ndrit. --Gjirokaster[?]
The sun shines even when it is cloudy.

Difton fmija, c'ka shtėpia. --North
The child tells what is in the house.

Dita pa punė nata pa gjumė. --South
The day without work, the night without sleep.

Dora me baltė buka me mjaltė. --Kosovo
The hand with mud, the bread with honey.

Dora e larė, zorrė e tharė. --South
.

Duket zogu qė nė ve. --South
You know the bird since it is an egg.

E

E vėrteta rri si vaji mbi ujė. --North
The truth stays like oil on water.

Edhe ujėt po tė rrijė nė njė vend qelbet. --South
Even water gets stale if it stays in one place.

F

Fikut ulėt i hyp kushdo. --Kruje[?]
The low fig [fruit branch] can be climbed by everyone.

Fjala e plakut, e pushka e djalit. --Kruje[?]
The word of the old, and the gun of the young.

G

Gruaja qė nuk do tė gatuajė, shosh gjithė ditėn. --Skrapar[?]
.

Gj

Gjarpėri ecėn dhe fshin gjurmėt me bisht. --Korce
The snake moves and erases its tracks.

Gjithsecili nė punėn e tij ėshtė zot. --South
Each person at his job is a god.

Gjykon puna, s'gjykon guna. --Librazhd
You tell by the work, not by the [clothes].

H

Hekuri sa punohet, aq zbukurohet. --Vlore[?]
The more worked the steel is, the more beautiful it becomes

I

I mjeri ai qė s'mendon pėr pleqėri. --Shkoder[?]
Poor he who does not think of old age.

I riu ka fuqi, plaku mėncuri. --South
The young have strength, the old have knowledge.

K

Kali plak tė len barrėn nė rrugė. --North
The old horse leaves the load on the road.

Kau qė nuk vete nė arė e pret sėpata. --Kurveoesh[?]
The cow that does not go in the field gets the axe.

Kazma nė dorė, buka nė gojė; kazma nė katua, trasta del pėr miell hua. --Skrapar[?]
.

Kėnga pėr darkė, brenga pėr drekė. --South
.

Ku ka bletė, ka dhe mjaltė. --Permet[?]
Where there are bees, there is honey.

Ku ka zemėr ka dhe krahė. --South
Where there is heart, there are hands.

Kullote dhinė tė tė mbushė kusinė. --Gjirokaster[?]
Feed the goat to fill the pot.

Kur s'ke mbjellė, s'ke ēfarė korr. --South
If you do not sow, you do not have anything to reap.

Kur s'ke punė luaj derėn. --Permet[?]
When you do not have any work, move the door.

Kush di me lavdue, din edhe me cpifė. --Kruje[?]
Who knows how to praise knows also how to lie.

Kush fėrkon pulėn, ha edhe vezėn. --Korce
Who rubs the chicken, eats even the egg.

Kush fle ngrohtė ka edhe ftohtė. --Arbereshet[?]
Who sleeps warmly, feels even cold.

Kush i kullot deshėt, ai qeth dhe leshėt. --Permet[?]
Who lets the rams graze gets the wool.

Kush ka turp, vdes pėr bukė. --South
Who is shy dies from hunger.

Kush mori udhė, dhe do tė lodhet. --Gjirokaster[?]
Who travels will also get tired.

Kush nuk di ē'ėshtė lodhja, ai nuk di ē'ėshtė ēlodhja. --Berat
Who knows what is to be tired, does not know how to be ['not tired'].

Kush pėrton vdes urije. --Berat
Who is lazy dies from hunger.

Kush rri nė pemė, ha edhe kokrrat. --Korce
Who stays under the tree, eats the fruits.

Kush s'punon, dheut i rėndon. --South
Who does not work, is heavy to the earth.

Kush zė brumė do tė gatuajė. --South
Who makes the dough will also cook.

Kushtrimi del pėr tė ligshtin, pse trimi kujtohet vet. --Shkoder[?]
.

L

Liria i ka rrėnjėt nė gjak. --South
Freedom has roots in blood.

Lima dalėngadalė bėri tranė gjilpėrė. --South
Slowly, the file turns the beam into a needle.

M

Malet tunden, po nuk bien. --South
The mountatins shake but do not fall.

Mbill me njė dorė, korr me tė dyja. --South
Sow with one hand, reap with both.

Mbroje atdhenė si shqipja folenė. --Shkoder[?]
Protect your motherland like the eagle protects its nest

Me fal gjakun ėshtė burrni. --Kosovo
To forgive the blood [ as in a killing] is to be a man.

Me lopatė ari dhe shat argjėndi tundėn e lėkundėn edhe malet nga vėndi. --Sarandė[?]
.

Mė mirė "punė e mbarė", se "mirė se tė gjej". --Shkoder[?]
Better to say "good work" than "I hope to find you well".

Mė mirė te vdesėsh mė kėmbė, sesa tė jetosh mė gjunjė. --Berat
It is better to die standing up, than to live on your knees.

Mirė se tė gjej, o hija e madhe!- Mirė se vjen o dembel hamė- A kamė leje tė rri pak? Po pate me hangėr rri sa tė duash. --Tirane
.

Mos kij turp nga kush s'ka turp. --South
Do not by shy of whom is not shy.

Mos prit tė tė kėrkojė e mira, po kėrkoje. --Vlore[?]
Do not wait for good things to search for you, but search for them.

Mos rri si nusja nė dasėm. --South
Do not stand like the bride at a wedding.

Mos u fshi si miu prapa poēes. --Skrapar[?]
Do not hide like the mouse behind the pot.

Mos u fshi si miza nėn bishtin e kalit. --Korce
Do not hide like a fly under the tail of a horse.

Moti ndihmon atėqė punon. --Berat
The weather helps he who works.

Mushka do dru, e demi kular. --Sarande[?]
.

N

Nė kurdhėn e nxehtė, s'rrihet me ēekan druri. --South
.

Nga del fjala, del dhe shpirti. --South
From whence comes the word, comes the soul.

Nga puna po nuk rrodhi, domosdo do pikojė. --Vlore[?]
.

Nuk mund tė dalė punė e madhe nga ai qė nuk do tė voglėn. --Berat
You will not get a big job done from whom does not want a small one.

Nuk rron peshku pa uje. --Kosovo
A fish cannot live without water.

Nuk zihet pleshti me dorashka. --Korce
You cannot catch a flea with gloves.

Nj

Njeriut iu bėj njeri, qenit bėniu qen. --South
To the man behave like a man, to the dog behave like a dog.

Njė ujė qė nuk ecėn s'pihet. --Elbasan[?]
The water that does not flow is not fit to drink.

P

Paraja nuk i zgjedh njerėzit. --Vlore[?]
Money does not choose the people.

Pleqėria vjen me shokė. --South
Old age comes with friends.

Po kėrciti dhėmbėt qeni i qėndro me shkop nė dorė. --South
If a dog shows his teeth, show him the wood.

Po nise njė udhė, do kaptosh dhe sheshe, dhe male, dhe gurė. --Devoll[?]
.

Po nuk e pate tė ligėn brėnda, s'tė vjen nga jashtė. --Vlore[?]
If you do not have malice inside, it will not come from outside.

Po nuk qau fėmija, nuk i jep nėna sisė. --South
If a child does not cry, his mother will not breast feed him.

Po nuk u turbullua, nuk kthjellohet. --Permet[?]
If it does not get cloudy, it will not get clear.

Po shkove me tė kėrciturit gishtėrinjtė sot, mos u anko nga tė kėrciturit e zorrėve nesėr. --Vlore[?]
.

Pula qė kėndon nė mbrėmje nuk bėn vezė nė mėngjes. --South
The chicken that cries at night does not lay egg in the morning.

Puna e rinisė, jorgan i pleqėrisė. --Tirane
The work of the youth is the blanket of the old.

Q

Qan ara se nuk i vjen fara. --Sarande[?]
Weeps the field because it does not get any seeds.

R

Ruaj dhinė tė pish qumėshtin. --Sarande[?]
Mind the goats so that you will drink their milk.

S

S'bėhet vreshti me urata, po me shata e lopata. --South
.

S'gjuhet me zagar tė lidhur. --Berat
You cannot hunt with a tied dog.

Sa mė shpejt kositet livadhi; aq mė shpejt lind bari. --Tropoje[?]
The more you mow the lawn, the faster the grass grows.

Sh

Shpjere gojėn te buka e jo bukėn te goja. --South
Take the mouth to the bread, not the bread to the mouth.

Shqiponja fluturon nė qiell, po folenė e bėn nė tokė. --Laberi[?]
The eagle flies in the sky, but nests on the ground.

T

Trupi shėndoshet me tė punuar, mėndja ndėrtohet me tė mėsuar. --South
The body builds up with work, the mind with studying.

U

Ujku e ka qafėn e trashė, se ka kambėt e shpejta. --Kruje[?]
The wolf has a thick neck because it has fast legs.

V

Vure vezėn more pulėn. --Kruje[?]
If you put an egg, you get a chicken.

See also Albania.



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