Tamil Proverbs – 7

My sincere condolences to the people who have died in the Mumbai terror and my prayers to their families.

Seventh part of my proverb collection. All translations are done by me.


கைய பிடித்து கள்ளை வார்த்து , மயிரை பிடித்து பணம் வாங்குறதா ?

Kai pidithu kallai varthu, maiyirai pidithu panam vanguratha?

Is it right to offer toddy first in a friendly way and then hold the hair and  take away all the money?


When help comes out of way be aware of it, it might end up in trouble. Typically like the Nigerian scam where people get mails sayings you have won lottery please send your bank account so that we can deposit money. When people give the account number each and every penny from their bank account is taken away. So if you get tempting offer out of the way, refuse it!


ஆம்புடையான் செத்து அவதி படும் போது, அண்டை வீட்டுக்காரன் அக்குளிலே பாய்ச்சுகிறான் !

Aambudayan sethu avathi padum ppthu, andai veetykkaran akkulile paaichukiraan!

While the wife was sorrowing seeing her husband in deathbed, her neighbour thrust his hand into her armpit arm-pit. 


The man tries to took advantage of a women in an unprotected state. Said about persons who take a mean advantage of another’s misfortunes.


சீலை இல்லை என்று சித்தி வீட்டுக்கு போனாளாம் , அவள் இச்சம் பாயை கட்டிகொண்டு எதிரே வந்தாளாம் .

Seelai illai endru sithi veetuku ponalaam, aval icham paaiyai kattikondu vanthalam.

She went to her aunt’s house since she had no saree but her aunt came out wearing a rug!


From bad to worse, when you think you are in a bad state and wish to live from mercy of some other person, you face the harsh reality that every one is living in a bad state!


பள்ளத்திலே இருந்தா பொண்டாட்டி , மேட்டிலே இருந்தா அக்கா !

Palathilae eruntha pondati, metile iruntha akka!

While they are in the valley he treats her as his wife, while on the hill he treats her as his sister.


Said of People who have no moral values and take advantage of every situation they can be undetected. 

“Do in the hole as thou wouldn’t do in the hall.”


ஊரார் வீட்டு நெய்யே , என் பொண்சாதி கையே.

Urar veetu neiye, en pondati kaiye.

Though the ghee belonged to the village, it is  my wife’s hand that is serving the ghee.


A couple went to a village feast. The wife was helping out by serving the ghee, when she was serving the ghee to her husband she poured more amount that she has served any one else since its her husband and the ghee is not theirs! Typically said to people who take advantage of the power given to them and make most of it.


Reference : A classified collection of Tamil Proverbs by Rev. Herman Jensen 

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