Japanese Proverbs starting by u  
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Japanese Proverbs Starting by u


上には上がある
[うえにはうえがある, ue niwa ue ga aru]
superiors have others above them

上を見れば限りなし
[うえをみればかぎりなし, ue ni mireba kagiri nashi)]
if you look up, there are no limits

上を見れば切がない
[うえをみればきりがない, ue o mireba kiri ga nai]
there is no end if you look up (can also mean: there are no limits to what talent and determination can bring)

兎の昼寝
[うさぎのひるね, usagi no hirune]
inattention is fatal (lit.: the hare’s midday nap)

雲散霧消
[うさんむしょう, usanmushou]
disappear without a trace, to; vanish completely, to (lit.: clouds scattered, mist vanishing)

牛の角を蜂が刺したよう
[うしのつのをはちがさしたよう, ushi no tsuno o hachi ga sashita you]
an elephant does not feel a fleabite (lit.: as though an ox’s horn were stung by a wasp)

牛を馬に乗り換える
[うしをうまにのりかえる, ushi o uma ni norikaeru]
make a change for the better, to (lit.: switch from an ox to a horse)

氏より育ち
[うじよりそだち, uji yori sodachi]
better than birth is upbringing

嘘から出た誠
[うそからでたまこと, uso kara deta makoto]
truth that comes out of a life; crooked logs make straight fires

嘘つきは泥棒の始まり
[うそつきはどろぼうのはじまり, usotsuki wa dorobou no hajimari]
a liar is the groundwork for a thief

嘘のような誠(本当)
[うそのようなまこと(ほんとう), uso no you na makoto]
truth is stranger than fiction (lit.: a truth that seems to be a lie)

嘘は盗人の始まり
[うそはぬすびとのはじまり, uso wa nusubito no hajimari]
lies are the beginnings of thieves; show me a liar and I’ll show you a thief

嘘も方便
[うそもほうべん, uso mo houben]
lies have their uses; lies have their place

嘘を言えば口が曲がる
[うそをいえばくちがまがる, uso o ieba kuchi ga magaru]
if you tell lies, your mouth will become crooked

歌は天地を動かす
[うたはてんちをうごかす, uta wa tenchi o ugokasu]
poetry moves heaven and earth

家の前のやせ犬
[うちのまえのやせいぬ, uchi no mae no yaseinu]
the scrawny dog in front of his master’s home; every dog is a lion at home

家ほどいい所ない
[うちほどいいところない, uchi hodo ii tokoro nai]
there is no place like home (lit.: there is no place as good as home is)

鵜のまねをする烏水におぼる
[うのまねをするからすみずにおぼる, u no mane o suru karasu mizu ni oboru]
keep within your limitations

馬の耳に念仏
[うまのみみにねんぶつ, uma no mimi ni nenbutsu]
something completely useless (lit.: Buddhist prayers in a horse's ears)

海のことは漁夫に問え
[うみのことはぎょふにとえ, umi no koto wa gyofu ni toe]
ask a person about what he best knows (lit.: ask a fisherman about the sea)

裏には裏がある
[うらにはうらがある, ura niwa ura ga aru]
the reverse side has its reverse side (lit.: there is a reverse side to the reverse side; ie.: there is always more to the story or situation than you are aware of)

売り言葉に買い言葉
[うりことばにかいことば, uri-kotoba ni kai-kotoba]
tit for tat; an exchange of compliments (in an angry fashion) (lit.: buying words for selling words)

瓜のつるに茄子はならぬ
[うりのつるになすびはならぬ, uri no tsuru ni nasubi wa naranu]
eggplants do not grow on melon vines; an onion will not produce a rose

売り物に花を飾れ
[うりものにはなをかざれ, uri mono ni hana o kazare]
make appealing what you want to sell (lit.: decorate with flowers what is for sale)

運否天賦
[うんぷてんぷ, unbu-tenbu]
lucky or unlucky (lit.: fate no, or heaven's distribution)





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