50+ Easy Latvian Proverbs To Try Out This Year!

Are you fascinated with history and want to learn the origin and meaning of Latvian proverbs? Keep reading this article!

I bet that your own country has amusing and meaningful proverbs that, for you, have become part of your language. You already say them seemingly without even noticing. Well, Latvia is not an exception! This small Baltic country is full of history and funny proverbs that we’re going to teach you in this article.

Learning proverbs is crucial to understanding and mixing with a new culture. Whether you’re just staying for a couple of days or planning to move to Latvia, learning a few of these proverbs will be a handy tool to make friends and connect with local people. Imagine if a tourist came to you in your own country and dropped a very local proverb in the middle of the conversation. How impressed would you be? I would be amazed and proud that they were trying to learn my language!

Learning these small phrases is not hard, and I just made it a lot easier with this guide on some of the essential proverbs in the Latvian language! Ready to learn? Let’s go then!

Latvian proverbs

What You Need To Know About The Latvian Language

Before diving head-first into the Latvian proverbs, it may be helpful for us to understand a bit more of the origin of the Latvian language. 

Latvian language, also known as Lettish, is an Eastern Baltic language part of the Indo-European language family. This language dates back to the 15th century when this language split from Lithuanian and formally became a singular language. More than 1.7 million people worldwide claim Latvian as their primary language.

As you can see, Latvia and its language are very old, so it is only probable that many proverbs were created and disseminated among Latvians across the country. 

Now is the time for the bad news: I’m going to be honest with you, as an English Speaker, Latvian is a pretty hard language to learn. Even if you have some knowledge of Russian or Lithuanian, it may be a bit tricky. However, don’t worry. We’re here to help if you want to learn Latvian!

50+ Common Latvian Proverbs

Latvia is a country rich in history as well as in proverbs. Here is a list of more than 50 proverbs that I can guarantee you didn’t know had Latvian origin:

EnglishLatvianSound
1. “The sin carries its shame on the back.” 1. “Grēks nes savu kaunu uz muguras.”
2. “He who catches hold of a fire has the burning fingers.” 2. “Tam, kurš satver uguni, ir degoši pirksti.”
3. “Cannot see woods behind the trees.” 3. “Nevar redzēt mežu aiz kokiem.”
4. “Even the devil himself does not know where women sharpen their knives.” 4. “Pat velns pats nezina, kur sievietes asina nažus.”
5. “As long as you live, you learn.” 5. “Kamēr tu dzīvo, tu mācies.”
6. “Better to die than to live dishonestly.”6. “Labāk mirt nekā dzīvot negodīgi.”
7. “It’s better to have potato and lose than never have potato.” 7. “Labāk ir kartupelis un zaudēt, nekā nekad nav kartupeļu.”
8. “The man promises, the man executes.” 8. “Vīrietis sola, vīrietis izpilda.”
9. “A good backside will easily find a bench to sit on.” 9. “Laba pēcpuse viegli atradīs soliņu, uz kura apsēsties.”
10. “In dense woods, the trees grow straight.” 10. “Blīvā mežā koki aug taisni.”
11. “The apple does not fall far from the tree.” 11. “Ābols nekrīt tālu no koka.”
12. “Your belly is not a book.”12. “Tavs vēders nav grāmata.”
13. “The man needs the woman as the ship needs an anchor.”13. “Vīrietim sieviete ir vajadzīga tāpat kā kuģim enkurs.”
14. “Sleep is the poor man’s treasure.” 14. “Miegs ir nabaga bagātība.”
15. “He who hasn’t a sin wasn’t born.” 15. “Kam nav grēka, tas nav dzimis.”
16. “Time is money.” 16. “Laiks ir nauda.”
17. “Stones are heavy, but the sins are heavier.” 17. “Akmeņi ir smagi, bet grēki ir smagāki.”
18. “On the hook of truth, only small carp will bite; in the net of falsehood, the big salmon are caught.” 18. “Uz patiesības āķa iekodīs tikai mazas karpas, melu tīklā tiek noķerti lielie laši.”
19. “The quiet pig digs a deep hole.” 19. “Klusā cūka rok dziļu bedri.”
20. “Every man forges his own destiny.” 20. “Katrs cilvēks veido savu likteni.”
21. “All that shines is not gold.” 21. “Viss, kas spīd, nav zelts.”
22. “Temperate man already assured place in paradise.” 22. “Mērens cilvēks jau ir garantējis vietu paradīzē.”
23. “Woods have ears, fields have eyes.” 23. “Mežam ir ausis, laukiem ir acis.”
24. “Good work demands a good lash.” 24. “Labs darbs prasa labu skropstu.”
25. “Let the devil into the church, and he will climb into the pulpit.” 25. “Ielaidiet velnu baznīcā, un viņš uzkāps kancelē.”
26. “A smart man always takes, a fool always gives.” 26. “Gudrs vienmēr ņem, muļķis vienmēr dod.”
27. “Hear much, talk a little.” 27. “Nedaudz dzirdēt daudz runāt.”
28. “All God Pleasant things are three.” 28. “Visas Dievam patīkamās lietas ir trīs.”
29. “Never wrestle with a strong man nor bring a rich man to court.” 29. “Nekad necīnieties ar spēcīgu vīrieti un nevediet tiesā bagātu cilvēku.”
30. “The ready back gets all the loads.” 30. “Gatavā aizmugure saņem visas kravas.”
31. “Give the devil a little finger, and he will take the hand.” 31. “Ledod velnam mazo pirkstiņu un viņš paņems roku.”
32. “If you can’t use your eyes, follow your nose.” 32. “Ja jūs nevarat izmantot acis, sekojiet savam degunam.”
33. “Dogs bark at last.”33. “Suņi rej uz pēdējo.”
34. “A smiling face is half the meal.” 34. “Smaidoša seja ir puse no ēdienreizes.”
35. “The church is situated not far from a tavern.” 35. “Baznīca atrodas netālu no kroga.”
36. “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.” 36. “Ceļš uz elli ir bruģēts ar labiem nodomiem.”
37. “There isn’t a just person without a sin.” 37. “Nav taisnīga cilvēka bez grēka.”
38. “As everything in life happens.” 38. “Kā viss dzīvē notiek.”
39. “Solitary trees in the wind more easily fall.” 39. “Vēja vientuļie koki vieglāk krīt.”
40. “A crow will not pick out the eyes of another crow.” 40. “Vārna neizšķirs otrai vārnai acis.”
41. “The young ones dance as the old ones whistle.” 41. “Jaunie dejo, kā vecie svilpo.”
42. “Each sin has its consequences.” 42. “Katram grēkam ir savas sekas.”
43. “He hopes like an ox for the horns.” 43. “Viņš cer kā vērsis uz ragiem.”
44. “He who will believe relatives will be duped.” 44. “Tas, kurš ticēs, ka radinieki tiks maldināti.”
45. “The master sleeps, the woods grow.” 45. “Saimnieks guļ, meži aug.”
46. “Old love does not rust.” 46. ​​”Vecā mīlestība nerūsē.”
47. “A strange glass is emptied in one draught; your own glass not even in ten.” 47. “Savā glāze tiek iztukšota vienā caurvējā; sava glāze pat ne desmit.”
48. “Errors of youth spoil the face in old age.”48. “Jaunības kļūdas sabojā seju vecumdienās.”
49. “Promised berries will not fill the basket.” 49. “Apsolītās ogas grozu nepiepildīs.”
50. “He that will not work shall not eat.” 50. “Kas nestrādās, tas neēdīs.”
51. “Once you’ve cut the bread, you cannot put it together again.” 51. “Kad esat sagriezis maizi, jūs nevarat to atkal salikt kopā.”
52. “We have rowed well, said the flea as the fishing boat arrived at its mooring.” 52. “Mēs esam labi airējuši,” sacīja blusa, zvejas laivai pienākot pie pietauvošanās.”
53. “The name is as it sounds.” 53. “Nosaukums ir tāds, kāds tas izklausās.”
54. “It’s better to have a straw from own mother than wool from the stepmother.” 54. “Labāk ir salmiņš no savas mātes, nekā vilna no pamātes.”
55. “Even the horse is tired on the way to church.” 55. “Pat zirgs ir noguris ceļā uz baznīcu.”
56. “Protect yourself, and God will protect you.” 56. “Pasargā sevi, un Dievs tevi pasargās.”
57. “No matter how much you eat, save some seeds for sowing.” 57. “Neatkarīgi no tā, cik daudz jūs ēdat, saglabājiet dažas sēklas sējai.”
58. “Master has a lash, and the priest has a prayer.” 58. “Meistaram ir skropsta, un priesterim ir lūgšana.”
59. “Nettles to foreign hands comfortable pick.” 59. “Nātres svešām rokām ērts pick.”
60. “Many a rosy apple is rotten to the core.” 60. “Daudzi sārti āboli ir sapuvuši līdz serdei.”
61. “Keep a candle under a bulb.” 61. “Turiet sveci zem spuldzes.”
62. “If there is no apple, one eats a little carrot.” 62. “Ja nav ābolu, ēd nedaudz burkānu.”
63. “Two ones will overcome even a bear.” 63. “Divi uzvarēs pat lāci.”
64. “You must not run after two birds simultaneously.” 64. “Nedrīkst skriet pēc diviem putniem vienlaicīgi.”
65. “Our cats don’t lick the empty dishes.”65. “Mūsu kaķi nelaiza tukšus traukus.”

Come Learn Latvian With Ling

Although learning foreign languages is a desire by most people, almost everyone stops when they realize how different some languages are from English or other European languages. I don’t blame you, some language learning courses are hard and boring. That’s why we put together a fantastic lesson for this language to help you learn it in a fun and engaging way!

Let me present to you my friend Ling – a little monkey that is the face of an incredible language-learning app called Ling App. This application will give you access to Latvian and 60 other languages worldwide! It comes complete with lessons, games, quizzes, and puzzles. With Ling App, you learn several topics in Latvian, including music, culture, sports vocabulary, and easy daily-life words!

With an integrated chatbot, you can solve your problems and ask questions anytime. You can even practice your conversational skills in the new language through it! Learning has never been so easy, you’ll be talking fluently in Latvian in a blink of an eye! What are you waiting for, then? Download the Ling app, learn everything about Latvian, and involve yourself in the next conversation with your Latvian friends!

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