Srpske/hrvatske poslovice i njihovi engleski ekvivalenti

A

  • Ako ne počneš nećeš ni završiti
    • Translation: If you don’t start, you won’t finish

B

  • Bez muke nema nauke.
    • Translation: Without suffering, there is no learning.
    • English equivalent: No pain, no gain.
  • Bog je prvo sebi bradu stvorio.
    • Translation: God first created a beard for himself. (Meaning that everybody looks after themselves first)
  • Bog visoko, a Rusija daleko.
    • Translation: God is high above, and Russia is far away. (Meaning that help is far and unlikely)
  • Bolje ikad nego nikad.
    • Translation: Better ever than never.
    • English equivalent: Better late than never.
  • Bolje sprečiti nego lečiti
    • Translation: Better to prevent than to have to cure.
    • English equivalent: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
  • Bolje vrabac u ruci, nego golub na grani.
    • Translation: A sparrow in the hand is better than a pigeon on the branch.
    • English equivalent: A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

C

  • Čovek je čoveku vuk.
    • English equivalent: Man is man’s wolf.
    • Latin equivalent: Homo homini lupus est.
  • Čovek sanja, Bog određuje.
    • Translation: Men wishes(dreams), but god decides.
    • English equivalent: Man proposes, but God disposes.

D

  • Da padne na leđa,razbio bi nos.
    • Translation: If he fell onto his back, he’d broke his nose.
    • English equivalent: ? when the person is very unlucky
  • Dala baba dinar da se uhvati u kolo, a dva da se pusti.
    • Translation: Grandma gave a dinar to dance, and two to stop.
    • English equivalent: Be careful what you wish for.
  • Daleko od očiju, daleko od srca
    • Translation: Far from the eyes, far from the heart
    • English equivalent: Out of sight, out of mind

G

  • Gde ima dima ima i vatre.
    • Translation: Where there is smoke, there is fire too.
    • English equivalent: Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.
  • Gde ti mnogo obećavaju, malu torbu ponesi
    • Translation: Where people are promising much to you, bring a small bag.
    • English equivalent: ? Similar to There is no free lunch.
  • Glava u oblacima.
    • Translation: (To have the) head in clouds.
    • English equivalent: To have one’s head in the clouds
  • Gvožđe se kuje dok je vruće.
    • Translation: Iron is worked when it’s still hot.
    • English equivalent: Strike while the iron is hot.

I

  • Il’ kuj, il ne mrči gaćâ!
    • English equivalent: Shit or get off the pot.
  • Imati veće oči od želuca. (Samo su mi oči gladne – only my eyes are hungry)
    • Translation: To have bigger eyes than the stomach.
    • English equivalent: Your eyes are bigger than your stomach.
  • Ispalo vragu iz torbe.
    • Translation: (Something that has) fallen out of a devil’s pouch.
    • English equivalent: untamed.
  • Ispeci pa reci.
    • Translation: Bake it and then say it.
    • English equivalent: Think before you speak.
  • Iver ne pada daleko od klade.
    • Translation: A splinter doesn’t land far from the trunk.
    • English equivalent: An apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

J

  • Jabuka ne pada daleko od stabla.
    • Translation: The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
  • Jedna lasta ne čini proleće.
    • Translation: One swallow does not make a spring.
    • English equivalent: One swallow does not make a spring.
    • Source of original proverb: Aristotle
  • Jutro je pametnije od večeri.
    • Translation: Morning is smarter than evening.

K

  • Kad mačke nema, miševi kolo vode.
    • Translation: When cat is absent, mice dance.
    • English equivalent: When the cat’s away the mice will play.
  • Kad na vrbi rodi grožđe.
    • Translation: When willows bear grapes.
    • English equivalent: When pigs fly.
  • Kako došlo, tako prošlo.
    • Translation: The way it came is the way it will go.
    • English equivalent: Easy come, easy go.
  • Kao mačka oko vruće kaše.
    • Translation: Like the cat around the hot meal.
    • English equivalent: Beating around bush.
  • Ko drugome jamu kopa sam u nju pada.
    • Translation: Who digs a trap for others ends up in it himself.
    • English equivalent: What goes around, comes around.
  • Ko nema u glavi, ima u nogama.
    • Translation: Who doesn’t have in his head has in his feet.
    • English equivalent: Absent-minded do the work twice.
  • Ko rano rani, dve sreće grabi. (Ptica ranoranilica prva crva nađe)
    • Translation: One who gets up early is doubly lucky.
    • English equivalent: The early bird gets (catches) the worm.
  • Ko s vragom tikve sadi, o glavu mu se obiju.
    • Translation: If one sows pumpkins with the devil, they will bash onto one’s head.
    • English equivalent: ? Similar to As you sow, so you shall reap.
  • Ko seje vetar, žanje oluju.
    • Translation: Who sows wind will harvest storm.
    • English equivalent: ? Similar to As you sow, so you shall reap.
  • Ko uči znaće, ko štedi imaće
    • Translation: Those who study will know, those who save will have.
    • English equivalent: ?
  • Ko ume, njemu dve
    • Translation: The one who’s able gets two.
    • English equivalent: Skilled worker is paid double.
  • Ko vino večera, vodu doručkuje.
    • Translation: Who has wine for dinner, he has water for breakfast.
    • English equivalent: ? You can’t avoid paying consequences for your deeds.
  • Kruh bez motike. (SR: Nema hleba bez motike)
    • Translation: Bread without shovel.
  • Krv nije voda.
    • Translation: Blood is not water.
    • English equivalent: Blood is thicker than water.

L

  • Lepa reč i gvozdena vrata otvara.
    • Translation: A kind word opens even the iron doors.
    • English equivalent:You can succeed in anything by being polite.

M

  • Mi o vuku, a vuk na vrata.
    • Translation: (speaking) of the wolf as the wolf (comes) to the door.
    • English equivalent: Speak of the devil.
    • Latin equivalent: Lupus in fabula.

N

  • Na mladima svet ostaje.
    • Translation: The world is left to the young.
  • Na muci se poznaju junaci.
    • Translation: In trouble you know a hero.
  • Na nevidišu nema krivice.
    • Translation: If it isn’t seen, there’s no guilt.
    • If you do something without being caught it isn’t done.
  • Najtamnije je ispod sveće
    • Translation:Its the darkest underneath the candle.
    • Its the darkest underneath the candle.
  • Naći iglu u plastu sena.
    • English equivalent: Finding a needle in a haystack.
  • Navika je dobar sluga, ali loš gospodar.
    • Translation: Habit is a good servant, but a poor master.
  • Ne gledaj poklonjenom konju u zube. (Poklonjenom konju se ne gleda u zube)
    • Translation: Don’t look a gift horse in the teeth.
    • English equivalent: Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
  • Ne laje pas zbog sela, nego radi sebe.
    • Translation: The dog doesn’t bark because of the village. (everybody cares about themselves the most)
  • Ne maljaj vraga na zid. (SR: Ne crtaj vraga)
    • Translation: Don’t paint the devil on the wall. Don’t invite misfortune; don’t talk about bad things that might happen because that could invite them to happen
  • Ne može kruška da rodi jabuku.
    • Translation: A pear tree cannot bear an apple.
    • English Equivalent: ? Similar to An apple doesn’t fall far from the tree
  • Ne možeš imati i ovce i novce.
    • Translation: You can’t have both money and sheep.
    • English equivalent: You can’t eat your cake and have it too
  • Ne kupuj mačka u vreći. (Ne kupuj mačku u džaku)
    • Translation: Don’t buy a cat in a bag.
    • English equivalent: Don’t buy a pig in a poke.
  • Ne vidi šumu od drveća.
    • English equivalent: Can’t see the forest for the trees
  • Ne stavljaj sva jaja u jednu košaru.
    • Translation: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
  • Ne sej tikve gde jos nisu nikle!
    • Translation: Don’t plant pumpkins where they never sprouted!
    • English equivalent: ? Don’t waste your time trying things which are proven not to work.
  • Ne trči pred rudo. (SR: Ne trči pred rudu)
    • Translation: Don’t run in front of a carriage.
    • English equivalent: Don’t jump the gun.
  • Nema hleba bez motike
    • Translation: There’s no bread without a hoe
    • English equivalent: You cannot make omelets without eggs.
    • Similar to Only hard work pays off.
  • Nema vatre bez dima.
    • Translation: There is no fire without smoke.
    • English equivalent: Where there is smoke there is fire.
  • Nema mirnog deteta ni mlade babe.
    • Translation: There’s no quiet child nor young grandmother.
  • Nesreća nikad ne dolazi sama.
    • Translation: Misfortune never comes alone.
    • English equivalent: When it rains, it pours.
    • English equivalent: Bad luck comes in threes.
    • German equivalent: Bad luck rarely comes alone. (Ein Unglück kommt selten allein.)
  • Nije zlato sve što sija.
    • English equivalent: All that glitters is not gold.
    • Fool’s gold (lažno zlato; zlato lažnog sjaja; zamka za budale)
  • Novac se na novac lepi.
    • Translation: Money sticks to money.
    • English equivalent: Money hangs around money.
  • O mrtvima sve najbolje.
    • Translation: Speak only the best of the dead.
    • English equivalent: Don’t speak ill of the dead.
    • Latin equivalent: De mortuis nil nisi bonum.

O

  • Od Kulina bana i dobrijeh dana.
    • Translation: Since Koohleen the prince and the good times; in remembrance of the good old days of Lord Kulin
    • English Equivalent: Back in the good old days.
  • Obećanje ludom radovanje
    • Translation: Promise makes a fool happy.
    • English equivalent: Do not be fooled by empty promises.
  • Odelo ne čini čoveka.
    • Translation: A suit doesn’t make a man.
    • English equivalent: You can’t tell a book by its cover.
    • French equivalent: L’habit ne fait pas le moine.
  • Odneti gaće na štapu. (Na kraju ostanu samo gaće na štapu)
    • Translation: To end up with underpants on a stick. (i.e. be really poor)
  • Ovca bleji, zalogaj gubi!
    • Translation: The sheep that bleats – loses it’s share in food.

P

  • Papir trpi sve.
    • Translation: Paper can withstand anything (doesn’t mean it’s true (a fact))
  • Pas koji laje, ne grize. (SR: Pas koji laje ne ujeda)
    • Translation: A dog that barks does not bite.
    • English equivalent: Barking dogs seldom bite; His bark is worse than his bite.
  • Po jutru se dan poznaje.
    • Translation: The morning shows how the day will be.
  • Počisti prvo pred svojim vratima.
    • Translation: First sweep the ground in front of your own door.
    • English equivalent: And why do you look at the splinter in your brother’s eye, and not notice the beam which is in your own eye?
    • People who live in glass houses should not throw stones (don’t criticize other people when you yourself have faults and weaknesses …)
  • Pomozi si sam pa će ti i Bog pomoći. (SR: Pomozi sam sebi pa će ti i Bog pomoći)
    • Translation: First help yourself and then God will help you.
    • English equivalent: God helps those who help themselves.
  • Pomozi sirotu na svoju sramotu.
    • Translation: Help the poor one for your own shame.
  • Pored takvih prijatelja što će mi neprijatelji.
    • Translation: With such friends, one doesn’t need enemies anymore.
    • English equivalent: With friends like those, who needs enemies?
  • Posle kiše dolazi sunce. (Posle kiše uvek dođe sunce)
    • Translation: After rain comes sun.
  • Praviti od komarca magarca. (od muve slona).
    • Translation: To make a donkey out of a mosquito.
    • English equivalent: To make a mountain out of a molehill.
  • Prodati rog pod svijeću.
    • Translation: To sell a horn as if it was a candle.
  • Prodati mačka u vreći.
    • Translation: To sell a cat in a bag.
      • To succeed in selling something useless or of a very poor quality.
  • Prosto ko pasulj.
    • Translation: As simple as beans
    • English equivalent: As easy as pie.
  • Prošla baba s kolačima.
    • Translation: The old lady with cakes has already passed by.
    • Now it is too late to act (you have missed the opportunity to do something).
    • English: To miss the boat; American Sign Language: train go sorry
  • Prvo skoči pa reci hop.
    • Translation: First leap, and then say “hop”!
    • English equivalent: Look before you leap.
    • Do something before you brag about it.
  • Puno baba, kilavo dijete. (SR: Mnogo babica kilava dečica)
    • Translation: Many midwives, child will be feeble.
    • English equivalent: Too many cooks spoil the broth.

R

  • Raditi račun bez krčmara. (SR: Praviti račun bez krčmara= raditi nepromišljeno)
    • Translation: To make the bill without the bartender (to do something hasty)
  • Rugala se sova senici. (SR: Rugala se šerpa loncu, široka mu usta; Rugala se ruga; )
    • Translation: The owl mocked the tit. / A pan was mocking a pot because his mouth is big.
    • English equivalent: The pot calls the kettle black.
  • Ruka ruku mije.
    • Translation: One hand washes the other.
    • English equivalent: You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.
    • Latin equivalent: Manus manum lavat.
  • Ružnoj devojci ogledalo krivo.
    • Translation: An ugly girl blames the mirror.
    • English equivalent: ? A bad craftsman blames his tools.

S

  • Samo Sloga Srbina Spasava
    • Translation: Only unity saves the Serbs.
  • Sit gladnom ne veruje.
    • Translation: The well fed one does not believe the hungry one.
  • Svakog gosta tri dana dosta.
    • Translation: Three days of any guest is plenty.
    • English equivalent: Fish and visitors stink after three days.
  • Sve je dobro što se dobro svrši.
    • English equivalent and translation: All’s well that ends well.
    • Sve se vraća sve se plaća
      • Translation: Everything has to be returned, everything has to be paid for.
      • English equivalent: What goes around, comes around.
  • Sve što je dobro kratko traje.
    • Translation: All that’s well lasts short.
    • English equivalent: All good things come to an end.
  • Svuda pođi, kući dođi.
    • Translation: Go everywhere, but come back home.
    • English Equivalent: There’s no place like home.
  • Svi putevi vode u Rim.
    • English equivalent and translation: All roads lead to Rome.
  • Strpljen – spašen.
    • Translation: Patient – saved.
    • English equivalent: All things come to he who waits.
  • Što bi gore sad je dolje, a što bi dolje sad je gore.
    • Translation: What once was up now is down and what once was down now is up
    • English equivalent: What goes around comes around.
  • Što je previše, ni s kruhom nije dobro.
    • Translation: What is too much is not good even with bread.
    • English equivalent: Too much of anything is bad for you
  • Što možeš danas, ne ostavljaj za sutra.
    • Translation: Do not leave for tomorrow, things you can do today.
    • English equivalent: Don’t put off until tomorrow what can be done today (Better now than later).

T

  • Teško žabu u vodu natjerati.
    • Translation: It is difficult to chase a frog into the water. (sarcasticaly)
  • Tiha voda brege dere. (SR: Tiha voda breg roni)
    • Translation: Still water wears down mountains./Anything is possible with time.
    • English equivalent: Still waters run deep.
  • Tko kupuje što mu ne treba, prodavat će što mu treba.
    • Translation: He who buys what he does not need will (eventually have to) sell what he needs.
  • Tko pita, ne skita. (SR: Ko pita ne skita)
    • Translation: He who asks, need not wander.
  • Tko pod drugim jamu kopa, sam u nju pada. (SR: Ko drugom jamu kopa, sam u nju upada)
    • Translation: He who digs a hole under someone else will fall into it himself.
  • Tko rano rani, dvije sreće grabi. (SR: Ko rano rani, dve sreće grabi)
    • Translation: He who wakes up early, catches two fortunes.
    • English equivalent: The early bird catches the worm.
  • Tko s malom djecom liježe, popišan se budi. (SR: Ko sa decom spava, popišan se budi)
    • Translation: If one goes to bed with small kids, wakes up wet.
  • Tko se zadnji smije, najslađe se smije. (SR: Ko se poslednji smeje, najslađe se smeje)
    • Translation: He who laughs last has the sweetest laugh.
    • English equivalent: He who laughs last laughs best.
  • Tko umije, njemu dvije.
    • Translation: He who can, gets two.
  • Tko želi rata, bio mu u kući.
    • Translation: Who wishes war, may war be in his house.
  • Tri loša ubiše Miloša.
    • Translation: Three bad ones killed Milosh.
  • Triput meri, jednom seci.
    • Translation: Measure thrice, cut once; think first, act later.
    • English Equivalent: Think twice before you cut; Think first, act later.
    • Similar to: Think before you speak

U

  • U laži su kratke noge.
    • Translation: In lies one has short legs.
    • English equivalent: A lie has no legs.
  • U tom grmu leži/čuči zec!
    • Translation: That’s the bush where the hare squats.
    • English equivalent: ? to find a solution to a problem
  • Umiljato jagnje dve ovce sisa.
    • Translation: Cuddly lamb sucks two ewes.
    • English equivalent: Similar to Flattery will get you anywhere.
  • Uzdaj se u se i u svoje kljuse.
    • Translation: Trust yourself and your horse.
    • English Equivalent: If you want to get things done, do it yourself.

V

  • Vreme je novac.
    • English equivalent and translation: Time is money.
  • Vrana vrani oči ne vadi
    • Translation: A crow doesn’t pick out another crow’s eyes.
    • English equivalent: A thief does not steal from another thief.
  • Vuk dlaku menja, ali ćud nikada.
    • Translation: The wolf changes his hair, but never his temperament.
    • English equivalent: A fox may change its skin, but never its character.
    • Latin equivalent: Vulpes pilum mutat, non mores.

Z

  • Željezo se kuje dok je vruće. (SR: Gvožđe se kuje dok je vruće)
    • English equivalent and translation: Forge while the iron is hot.
  • Žuri polako.
    • Translation: Hasten slowly.
    • English equivalent: Slowly but carefully.
    • Latin equivalent: Festina lente.
Be Sociable, Share!

16 comments on “Srpske/hrvatske poslovice i njihovi engleski ekvivalenti

  1. Krešimir says:

    “U laži su kratke noge.” – “Liar, liar, pants on fire.”

  2. Spring Spring says:

    :)

    Druga nije problem jer, kao i na srpskom, i na engleskom ima sasvim pristojnu verziju

    You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours

    Međutim, prva.. hm… ne mogu da se setim nečeg sličnog na engleskom a mislim da to nikad nisam čula ni na srpskom pa molim za prevod (sa *** umesto reči zbog kojih to oklevanje u prevođenju) :)

  3. vladislav says:

    Imaju dve engleske poslovice koje ja volim ali ne bih se usudio da prevedem na engleski.Prva je : Osmotri prvo dzunglu pre nego sto udjes i povuces tigra za rep.Druga je:Pocesi mi ledja ako mislis da i ja tebi nekad pocesem.

  4. poslovice says:

    Da dodam par poslovca:)

    Slogom rastu male stvari, neslogom se i najveće raspadaju.
    Svako ima prava koliko ima moći.
    Bogatstvo mijenja ćud, rjetko nabolje.
    Veliku sreću prati zavist.
    Dobar čovjek uijvek ostaje početnik.
    Ravnodušnost je najbolji način u brigama.
    Što ljudi imaju više, to više žele.
    Prijatelju i neprijatelju daj uijvek dobar savjet, jer prijatelj ga prihvata, a neprijatelj otklanja.

  5. Spring Spring says:

    Hvala Stefane! :)

    Samo .. ne bih se slozila da je “Head over heals” ekvivalent za “Glava u oblacima”
    Head over heals je recimo “zaljubljen do usiju”

  6. Stephaan Stephaan says:

    Zanimljiva tema :)))
    Evo nekih poslovica koje su meni pale na pamet, i neke za koje već postoje, još po neki preddlog.

    ‘Vuk dlaku menja ali ćud nikada’.
    Equivalent: ‘A Leopard Can’t Change His Spots’
    Meaning: You cannot change who you are.

    ‘Pas koji laje ne ujeda’.
    Equivalent: ‘All bark no bite’

    ‘Sve što je brzo to je i kuso’
    Equivalent: ‘Haste makes waste’.
    Meaning: Quickly doing things results in a poor ending.

    ‘Glava u oblacima.’
    Equivalent: ‘Head over heels.’
    Meaning: Very excited and/or joyful, especially when in love.

    :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>