Irish Proverbs

A proverb is defined as a common saying that expresses a well-known fact or truth. These sayings traditionally taught the little lessons of life. The people of Ireland love proverbs and so it is not surprising that they show up at Irish weddings. Some of the proverbs that may be overheard at a wedding would be in passing or in a speech by the wedding party or a family member.

In order to understand the meaning of proverbs if not of Irish decent, one must understand the Irish dry humour or the “tell it like it is” mentality. Irish proverbs can be sweet, amusing, but most of all quite truthful.

They may include:

Honey is sweet, but don’t lick it off a briar.
If you want praise, die. If you want blame, marry.
A man loves his sweetheart the most, his wife the best,
but his mother the longest.
Beauty won’t make the kettle boil.
It’s easy to halve the potato where there’s love.
It is often that a person’s mouth broke his nose.
A man cannot grow rich without his wife’s leave.
Don’t show your skin to a person who won’t cover it.

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