West African Proverbs Part 2 – Proverbs from around West Africa, including Ghana, Ivory Coast, Niger, Benin, Burkina Farso, Guinea, Senegal, Mali, Mauritania … Use the page links at the bottom to navigate.

Ghanian Proverbs

  1. If a goat bites an intruder, the dog must be ashamed.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  2. Two rams cannot drink from the same bucket at the same time, for fear of locking horns.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  3. If all seeds that fall were to grow, then no one could follow the path under the trees.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  4. When you go searching for fame, watch out for notoriety, for they are like identical twins.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  5. Reputation is like a raw egg, if it falls it is difficult to gather.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  6. If you think you are old, there is someone who is older.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  7. The secret of the mouth is best known by the chewing stick.
    Community/language of origin: Accra
    Country: Ghana
  8. A barber doers not shave himself.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  9. If a crocodile refuses to act like one, even children will call it a lizard.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  10. Two men in a burning house must not stop to argue.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  11. You will know those who can swim well, the day a river overflows its banks.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  12. No one appreciates his bottom until it develops a boil.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  13. First find an escape route before taunting the cobra.
    Community/language of origin: Akan
    Country: Ghana
  14. It requires a lot of carefulness to kill the fly that perches on the scrotum.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  15. By the time the fool has learned the game, the players have dispersed.
    Community/language of origin: Ashanti
    Country: Ghana
  16. Do not beat a drum with an axe.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  17. If you are in hiding, do not light a fire.
    Community/language of origin: Ashanti
    Country: Ghana
  18. An old lady feels uneasy when dry bones are mentioned in a proverb.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  19. The hoe of death does not weed on one place.
    In original language: Owu adare ndow faak
    Community/language of origin: Akan
    Country: Ghana
  20. When the fool is told a proverb, its meaning has to be explained to him.
    Community/language of origin: Ashanti
    Country: Ghana
  21. Like a turtle, every man should stick out his neck if he wants to go forward.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: GhanaLike a turtle, every man should stick out his neck if he wants to go forward.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  22. Like a turtle, every man should stick out his neck if he wants to go forward.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  23. Rebuke is greater to the wise than hundred blows on a fool.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  24. Evil prospers because good men fail to act.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Gambia
  25. One must first have a head before contemplating chewing corn.
    Community/language of origin: Dagomba
    Country: Ghana
  26. He who marries a real beauty is seeking trouble.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  27. A woman is a flower in a garden; her husband is the fence around it.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  28. A leader in the community without a pot belly is stingy.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Ghana
  29. What an old man sees when sitting, a child cannot see even on the top of a tree.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Nigeria / Ghana
  30. Wisdom is like a baobab tree; no one individual can embrace it.
    La science est le tronc d’un baobab qu’une seule personne ne peut embrasser (French)
    In original language: Nunya, adidoe, asi metunee o.
    Community/language of origin: Unknown
    Country: Benin, Ghana and Togo

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  • If possible the proverb not only in English but original language as well
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