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Thread: Personal Development: Cantonese Proverbs

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    Personal Development: Cantonese Proverbs


    February 25, 2014 by writecantonese8 in Study of Cantonese 51 Comments
    阿塗(Ah To), a graphic designer and part-time cartoonist who concerns about the survival of Cantonese in Canton and Hong Kong, has just published a comic called The Great Canton and Hong Kong Proverbs on Hong Kong independent media Passion Times. The cartoon contains illustrations of 81 Cantonese proverbs.
    The Great Canton and Hong Kong Proverbs
    In 1559, Dutch artist Pieter Bruegel created the oil painting Netherlandish Proverbs which illustrates many Dutch proverbs to praise the Dutch culture. In 2014, Ah To imitated the idea and created Great Canton and Hong Kong proverbs illustrating 81 Cantonese proverbs to propagate the Cantonese culture and defend Cantonese.
    81 Cantonese Proverbs
    (I attempt to finish this table in a week.)

    Cantonese Proverbs Meanings
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image001.jpg[/IMG] 2. 鬼揞眼[gwi m ngahn] (a ghost covers ones eyes)
    1. to fail to see something
    2. to fail to find something
    3. to make a mistake
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image002.jpg[/IMG] 3. 有錢駛得鬼推磨[yuh chn si dāk gwi tēui mh] (if you have money, you can make a ghost push a millstone)
    everything is possible with money; money makes the world go round
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image003.jpg[/IMG] 4. 鬼拍後尾枕[gwi paak huh mih jm] (a ghost slaps the back of ones head)
    to let out a secret unknowingly
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image004.jpg[/IMG] 5. 呃鬼食豆腐[ngāak gwi sihk dauh fuh] (cheating the ghost to eat bean curd)
    1. to lure someone into a trap, to trick someone
    2. used to express scepticism or disbelief, youre kidding me!
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image005.jpg[/IMG] 6. 扮鬼扮馬[baahn gwi baahn mah] (to masquerade as a ghost and as a horse)
    to play a role to deceive somebody, to play a part to trick someone
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image006.jpg[/IMG] 7. 鬼畫符[gwi waahk fh] (a ghost draws a talisman)
    illegible scribble, poor handwriting
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image007.jpg[/IMG] 8. 放飛機[fong fēi gēi] (to release aeroplane)
    to break a promise, to break a commitment; to fail to turn up for a date
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image008.jpg[/IMG] 9. 飛象過河[fēi jeuhng gwo hh] (fly an elephant across the river)
    1. to break a rule
    2. to reach across the table for food (a reference to the rules of Chinese chess)
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image009.jpg[/IMG] 10. 過橋抽板[gwo kuh chāu ban] (to pull up the planks after crossing the bridge)
    to betray ones friends once the crisis is over, to abandon ones friends once one is safe
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image010.jpg[/IMG] 11. 佛都有火[faht dōu yuh f] (even Buddha gets inflamed)
    to a degree that is intolerable, thats the limit!.
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image011.jpg[/IMG] 12. 老貓燒鬚[luh māau sīu sōu] (old cat burns its whiskers)
    an expert who makes a careless mistake in their own expertise.
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image012.jpg[/IMG] 13. 開籠雀[hōi lhng juk] (bird in an open cage)
    someone who chatters all the tim
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image013.jpg[/IMG] 14. 兩頭蛇[luhng tuh sh] (two headed snake)
    1. someone who works for both sides in a deal
    2. a servant of two masters
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image014.jpg[/IMG] 15. 豬乸會上樹[jyū n wih suhng syuh] (female pigs can climb tree)
    When pigs fly
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image015.jpg[/IMG] 16. 拉牛上樹[lāai nguh suhng syuh] (to pull a cow up a tree)
    a vain attempt to do something
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image016.jpg[/IMG] 17. 煲電話粥[bōu dihn w jūk] (to boil telephone congee)
    to talk for hours on the phone.
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image017.jpg[/IMG] 18. 冬瓜豆腐[dūng gwā dauh fuh] (winter melon and tofu)
    1. an emergency, a crisis
    2. an unfortunate event, especially death.
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image018.jpg[/IMG] 19. 刀仔鋸大樹[dōu ji geu daaih syuh] (use a little knife to saw down a tree)
    use little capital to make big profit
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image019.jpg[/IMG] 20. 掛羊頭賣狗肉[gwa yuhng tuh maaih gu yuhk] (using dogmeat in the place of lamb)
    Deceitful Act
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image020.jpg[/IMG] 21. 倒瀉籮蟹[du s lh haih] (to pour out a basket of crabs)
    messy; troublesome
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image021.jpg[/IMG] 22. 大石笮死蟹[daaih sehk jaak si haih] (big stone crushes crab)
    an unequal contest
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image022.jpg[/IMG] 23. 甩繩馬騮[lāt sng mah lu] (loose string monkey)
    1. a very naughty child
    2. someone no longer under the control of their superior or guardian.
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image023.jpg[/IMG] 24. 運桔[wahn gāt] (transport tangerine)
    to visit a shop or a person without any particular purpose, to be just looking in a shop
    (*Gang members extort money from shops using pots of tangerine)
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image025.jpg[/IMG] 25. 鬼食泥[gwi sihk nih] (a ghost eats mud)
    to slur your words
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image026.jpg[/IMG] 26. 死雞撐飯蓋[si gāi chaang faahn goi] (dead chicken pushing back the cooking-pot lid)
    to fight to the bitter end, to refuse to admit one is in the wrong
    [IMG]file:///C:/Users/pywong/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image027.jpg[/IMG] 27. 炒魷魚 [chau yu y] (to stir-fry squid)
    to dismiss an employee
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