Aho ni toriau baka. It is foolish to deal with a fool.
Aite no nai kenka wa denkinu. One cannot quarrel without an opponent.
Ame futte ji katamaru. Rained on ground hardens (Adversity builds character).
Asu no koto o ieba, tenjo de nezumi ga warau. Talk about things of tomorrow and the mice inside the ceiling laugh (Nobody knows what tomorrow might bring).
Ayamachitewa aratamuruni habakaru koto nakare. If you make a mistake, don’t hesitate to correct it.
Baka ga atte riko ga hikitatsu. Due to the presence of fools wise people stand out.
Baka na ko hodo kawaii. The more stupid the child the dearer it is.
Bushi wa kuwanedo taka-yoji. A samurai, even when he has not eaten, uses his toothpick.
Chisa wa madowazu, yusha wa osorezu. A wise man does not lose his way, a brave man does not fear.
Deta-toko shobu. To gamble as the dice fall.
Doku kurawaba sara made. If eating poison finish up the plate (or, If eating poison don’t forget to lick the plate)..
Gaden insui. To draw water into one’s own rice field
Inu o mikka kaeba san-nen on o wasurenu, neko wa san-nen katte mikka de on o wasureru. Feed a dog for three days and it is gratefull for three years. Feed a cat for three years and it forgets after three days.
Ippai-me wa hito sake o nomi, nihai-me wa sake sake o nomi, sanbai-me wa sake hito o nomu. With the first glass a man drinks wine, with the second glass the wine drinks the wine, with the third glass the wine drinks the man.
Koji ma Oshi. Good things, many devils.
Ko-in ya no gotoshi. Time flies like an arrow.
Kuni yaburete, sanga ari. The country is in ruins, and there are still mountains and rivers.
Kokai saki ni tatazu. Repentance never comes first.
Me wa kuchi hodo ni mono o ii. The eyes speak as much as the mouth.(love needs no words)
Me wa kokoro no kagami. The eyes are the mirror of the soul.
Mime yori kokoro. Heart rather than appearance.
Mimi o oute, suzu o nusumu. Cover the ears and steal the bell.
Migi no mimi kara hidari no mimi. To go in the right ear and out the left.
Mitsugo no tamashii hyaku made. The soul of a three year old until a hundred.
Mizukara boketsu o horu. to dig one’s grave.
Muri ga toreba, dori hikkomu. If unreason comes, reason goes.
Muyo no cho-butsu. A useless long object.
Naite kurasu mo issho, waratte kurasu mo issho. It is the same life whether we spend it crying or laughing.
Nana korobi, ya oki. To fall seven times, to rise eight times.
Nurenu saki koso tsuyu omo itoe. People want to avoid the dew before they become wet.
Shunsho ikkoku, atai senkin. Half an hour in a spring evening is worth a thousand gold pieces.
Sode fure-au mo tasho no en. Even when our sleeves brush together it is our karma.
Sugitaru wa nao oyobazaru ga gotoshi. Let what is past flow away downstream.
Tazei ni buzei. Few against many.
Nou aru taka wa tsume wo kakusu. The hawk with talent hides its talons (The person who knows most often says least).
Hotoke no kao mo san-do made. Even the Buddha’s face, only until the third (slap)
(Even the most mild-mannered person will lose his/her temper eventually.)
Saru mo ki kara ochiru. Even monkees fall from trees (Even an expert can make mistakes).
Tonari no shibafu wa aoi. The neighbour’s lawn is green (The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence).
Gou ni itte wa, gou ni shitagae. Entering the village, obey the village (When in Rome, do as the Romans do).
Iwanu ga hana. Not-speaking is the flower (Silence is golden)
Fuku sui bon ni kaerazu. Overturned water doesn’t return to the tray (There’s no use crying over spilt milk).
Atama kakushite, shiri kakusazu. Cover your head, and not cover your bottom (Don’t cover your head but expose your bottom, ie: you have to be careful not to expose your weak point while attempting to protect yourself).
Uma no mimi ni nembutsu. A sutra (Buddhist prayer) in a horse’s ear (A wasted effort).
Baka mo ichi-gei. Even a fool has one talent (Even a fool may be good at something).
Neko ni koban. A coin to a cat (Don’t offer things to people who are incapable of appreciating them).
Yabu wo tsutsuite hebi wo dasu. Poke a bush, a snake comes out (Let sleeping dogs lie).
Baka wa shinanakya naoranai. A fool is only cured by dying (Once a fool, always a fool).