Egyptians just love using proverbs in everyday speech. Translating Egyptian proverbs can literally be hilarious ... but illustrating them? That just takes the cake.
Here are a few Egyptian proverbs as illustrated by various artists.
1. El Erd Fi Ein Omo Ghazal القرد في عين أمه غزال
Literal translation: The monkey is as beautiful as a gazelle in its mother’s eyes.
Real meaning: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
2. Bagry ala eyali ya beh بجري على عيالي يا بيه
Literal Translation: I'm running over my children, sir.
Real meaning: I'm working hard to raise my children and put food on the table.
3. Bashem ala dahr eedi بشم على ظهر إيدي
Literal Translation: I'm sniffing on the back on my hand.
Real meaning: I can predict the future and know the unseen.
4. Al ain fala'et el hagar العين فلقت الحجر
Literal translation: The stone was split by the eye.
Real meaning: The evil eye and envy can split stones.
P.S: Egyptian aunties really believe this!
5. El Hetan laha wedan الحيطان لها ودان
Literal translation: The walls have ears.
Real meaning: There is always someone who is spying or willing to reveal other people's secrets.
6. Enta ma'andaksh reehet el dam انت معندكش ريحة الدم
Literal translation: You don't even have the smell of blood.
Real meaning: You are so ill mannered and rude.
7. E'leb el edra ala fomaha, tetla' el bint le omaha إقلب القدرة علة فمها تطلع البنت لأمها
Literal translation: Flip over the pot, the girl will go up to her mother.
Real meaning: Daughters always look up to their moms and resemble them.
8. Fe El wesh meraya, we fe el afa sallaya! في الوش مرايه و في القفا سلايه
Literal translation: To my face, the person is a mirror. Behind my back they are a spike.
Real meaning: Obviously, this is about backstabbers.
9. Weshaha fe el ard min el kosoof وشها في الأرض من الكسوف
Literal translation: Her face is on the ground out of shyness.
Real meaning: Her sense of shyness compels her to lower her gaze.
10. Kollak Nazar! كلك نظر
Literal Translation : You're all eyesight.
Real Meaning: You're so thoughtful.