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Latin Via Proverbs: Home - Previous - Next


Group 161: Latin


2064. Nondum venit hora mea.

2065. Digna dignis eveniunt.

2066. Tantalus inter undas sitit.

2067. Nullum infortunium venit solum.

2068. Per pravum socium vir venit in vitium.

2069. Fatuus fatuum invenit.

2070. Cribro aquam haurit.

2071. In pertuso haurit dolio.

2072. Invenit deus maleficum.

2073. Invenit patella operculum.

2074. Invenit amicum, invenit thesaurum.

2075. Invenit interdum caeca columba pisum.

2076. Ex pravo pullus bonus ovo non venit ullus.

2077. Ex frixis ovis pullus numquam venit ullus.


Study Guide


2064. My time has not yet come. (These words are spoken by Jesus to Mary in the Gospel of John, at the occasion of the wedding in Cana.)


2065. Appropriate things happen to the appropriate people. (In other words: everyone gets what they deserve. This phrase is found in Plautus's Poenulus.)


2066. Tantalus thirsts amidst the waves. (Tantalus was punished in the underworld by gazing upon water he could not drink and reaching out for food he could not grasp. You can see an illustration of Tantalus from Alciato's Book of Emblems.)


2067. No misfortune comes alone. (Compare the proverb in Group 120, Cura curam trahit and the notes provided there.)


2068. By means of a wicked friend a man falls into flaws. (Notice the delightful alliteration in the Latin. I tried a bit of similar wordplay in the English. This is a medieval proverb, cited by Walther 21233.)


2069. A fool finds a fool. (This is a humorous variation on the idea that "birds of a feather flock together.")


2070. He's gathering water with a sieve. (This saying made its way into Erasmus's Adagia, 1.4.60. A fuller version of the saying in rhyme reads: Haurit aquam cribro, qui discere vult sine libro, "The person who wants to learn without a book is gathering water in a sieve.")


2071. He's drawing with a perforated jug. (The most famous example of this impossible task would be the punishment of the daughters of the Danaus, the Danaides, in the underworld. The Danaides killed their husbands and in the afterlife were punished by being condemned to carry water in jugs that had holes in them.)


2072. God discovers the evildoer. (This saying is adapted from Theocritus, Idyll 10. In many ancient myths and fables, when human justice fails, it is up to the gods to intervene. Consider, for example, Phaedrus's fable about the thief in Jupiter's temple, rebuked by Religio herself.)


2073. The pot find its cover. (You can find various versions of this saying:  dignum patella operculum; reperiit patella operculum, etc. Compare the English sayings, "Like pot, like lid," or "Such a pot must have such a lid," etc.)


2074. He who finds a friend, finds a treasure. (This phrase is adapted from the book of Ecclesiasticus, an apocryphal book of the Bible, also known as the Wisdom of Sirach.)


2075. Sometimes a blind pigeon finds a pea. (Compare this similar saying: forte luscus capiat leporem, "by chance a one-eyed man might catch a rabbit.")


2076. No good chick ever comes from a bad egg. (Notice the intricate word order, where the phrase ex pravo ovo and pullus bonus ullus have been deftly intertwined.)


2077. From fried eggs no chick ever comes. (Compare this similar version of the same saying: Ex ovis pravis non bona venit avis.)

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