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Japanese Proverbs Starting by chi


小さくとも針は飲まれぬ
[ちいさくともはりはのまれぬ, chiisaku tomo hari wa nomarenu]
use even the smallest things with care and caution (lit.: though small a needle should not be swallowed)

近くて見えぬは睫毛
[ちかくてみえぬはまつげ, chikakute mienu wa matsuge]
we see not what sits on our own shoulders; we can eassily find others' faults but not our own (lit.: eyelashes though close are not visible)

力は正義
[ちからはせいぎ, chikara wa seigi]
might makes right (from the English proverb; the nature of politics and power are the same the world over, it seems)

知識は力なり
[ちしきはちからなり, chishiki wa chikara nari]
knowledge is power

知識は富の永久の泉
[ちしきはとみのえいきゅうのいずみ, chishiki wa tomi no eikyuu no izumi]
knowledge is the perennial spring of wealth (from the English proverb)

血で血を洗う
[ちでちをあらう, chi de chi o arau]
wash blood with blood, to (i.e.: a terrible fight or quarrel between warriors or family members, often over status or resources)

知徳は車の両輪の如し
[ちとくはくるまのりょうりんのごとし, chitoku wa kuruma no ryourin no gotoshi]
wisdom and virtue are like the two wheels of a cart (i.e.: they are inextricably linked and cannot be separated)

治にいて乱を忘れず
[ちにいてらんをわすれず, chi ni ite ran o wasurezu]
in fair weather prepare for foul (lit.: in peace do not forget war; in other words, the best defense is preparedness)

血は血だけ
[ちはちだけ, chi wa chi dake]
blood is only blood (i.e.: family can be helpful but not always reliable)

血は水より濃し
[ちはみずよりこし, chi wa mizu yori koshi]
blood is thicker than water (taken from English and accepted as a Japanese proverb)

茶人の物好き
[ちゃじんのものずき, chajin no mono zuki]
a very curious, interested person (lit.: the curiosity of a tea devotee; that is to say that people who participate in a tea ceremony are supposed to express interest in all the details, from teh age, maker, and cost of the materials, to the style or the rite itself)

茶腹も一時
[ちゃばらもいっとき, chabara mo ittoki]
when hungry any food is fit for a while (lit.: even a cup of tea [will calm hunger] for a little while)

茶碗を綿で受ける
[ちゃわんをわたでうける, chawan o wata de ukeru]
a soft answer turns away wrath; be oblivious to a slight or insult, to; ignore or dismiss a slight or insult, to (lit.: accept a teacup with cotton)

茶を飲むと色が黒くなる
[ちゃをのむといろがくろくなる, cha o nomu to iro ga kuroku naru]
drinking tea leads to a dark complexion (n.b.: this is why, at least traditionally, women tended to avoid drinking tea, since a fair if not white complexion was, and still is in some areas, highly prized)

忠臣は二君につかえず
[ちゅうしんはにくんにつかえず, chushin wa nikun ni tsukaezu]
no man can serve two masters (lit.: a loyal retainer does not serve two lords. This was often quoted during the feudal period, and is taken from the writings of the ancient Chinese historian Ssu-ma Ch'ien)

朝三暮四
[ちょうさんぼし, chousanboshi]
humbug; six of one or half a dozen of the other (lit.: morning three, evening four)

提灯に釣鐘
[ちょうちんにつりがね, chouchin ni tsurigane]
an ill-suited match [between a man and a woman] (lit.: a paper lantern with a hanging temple bell, two common items in ancient and modern Japan that simply do not go together at all)

提灯持ち足元暗い
[ちょうちんもちあしもとくらい, chouchin-mochi ashimoto kurai]
news at home is best gotten from afar (lit.: it is dark at the feet of the lantern bearer)

提灯持ちは先に立て
[ちょうちんもちはさきにたて, chouchin-mochi ha saki ni tate]
the candle that goes before gives the best light (lit.: the person with the lantern should go first; that is to say, whoever has the requisite knowledge or tool should lead the way)

町内で知らぬ者は亭主ばかりなり
[ちょうないでしらぬものはていしゅばかりなり, chounai de shiranu mono wa teishu bakari nari]
the good man is the last to know what is amiss at home (lit.: only the husband knows not what is happening in the neighborhood; this expression is often applied to a cuckold who is unaware of his wife's infidelity)

塵も積もれば山となる
[ちりもつもればやまとなる, chiri mo tsumoreba yama to naru]
little and often makes a heap in time (lit.: even dust will accumulate into a mountain)

珍客も三日目には居候
[ちんきゃくもみっかめにはいそうろう, chinkyaku mo mikkame niwa isourou]
the first day a guest, the third day a pest (lit.: even a valued guest becomes a parasite on the third day)

沈黙は金なり
[ちんもくはきんなり, chinmoku wa kin nari]
silence is gold (probably a direct translation of the English proverb; n.b.: the character for "kin" [also read "kane"] can mean gold, money, or metal)

沈黙は金、雄弁は銀
[ちんもくはきん、ゆうべんはぎん, chinmoku wa kin, yuuben wa gin]
silence is golden, eloquence is silver

沈黙は承諾の内
[ちんもくはしょうだくのうち, chinmoku wa shoudaku no uchi]
silence is part of consent (from the English “silence gives consent”)



A I U E O KA KI KU KE KO SA SHI SU SE SO TA CHI TSU TE TO NA NI NU NE NO HA HI FU HE HO MA MI MU ME MO YA YU YO RA RI RU RE RO


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