Introduction to Japanese Proverbs

Japanese Proverbs

Minasan Ohayō gozaimasu!
Good morning, everyone!

Today’s YouTube Live lesson is Japanese Proverbs.
It’s good way to learn new Japanese vocabularies and culture.
Also, it would be fun to compare Japanese proverbs and proverbs in your country! 🙂

*YouTube Japanese Live Lessons:  Every Mon & Wed 9am~ JST

Here are the proverbs I introduced in the lesson:

猫に小判  neko ni koban

neko ni koban
The literal translation for “neko ni koban” is “coins for a cat”, that means “pearls cast before swine”

豚に真珠  buta ni shinju

buta ni shinju
The literal translation for “buta ni shinju” is “pearls for a pig”, that means “pearls cast before swine”, same as “buta ni shinju”.

犬猿の仲  kenen no naka

kenen no naka
≈ “kenen no naka” is “relations between a dog and a monkey”, that means “like cats and dogs”.

猿も木から落ちる   saru mo ki kara ochiru

saru mo ki kara ochiru
The literal translation for “saru mo ki kara ochiru” is even a monkey falls from a tree”, that means “Homer sometimes nods”.

知らぬが仏   shiranu ga hotoke

Shiranu ga hotoke

The literal translation for “shiranu ga hotoke” is “not knowing is buddha”, that means “ignorance is a bliss”.

スズメの涙 suzume no namida


The literal translation for “suzume no namida” is “sparrow’s tears”, that means “drop in the bucket”.

一石二鳥    isseki nichō


The literal translation for “isseki nichoo” is “one stone two birds”, means “(hitting) two birds with a stone”.

二階から目薬   nikai kara megusuri


The literal translation for “nikai kara megusuri” is “eyedrops from the second floor”, means “fanning the sun with a peacock’s feather”.

Do you have similar proverbs or expressions in your country?
Please check the full explanation in the video 🙂

Actually, the above are just a few examples. There are so many more Japanese proverbs!

Thank you so much for joining my lesson today!
If you want to learn more Japanese, check below and join my online course 🙂

Yoi ichinichi o!
(Have a nice day!)

-Kazue