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  • Category: Improve Your English

    What do you mean by the following proverbs?

    In all languages including English and Indian languages there are proverbs which give beautiful life messages to everyone. Some of the proverbs which are equivalent in meaning are there in our different languages. Some of these proverbs have hidden deep inner meaning to them. So let us try to get a clear inner meaning of these proverbs. I am mentioning below here three beautiful proverbs and let members give their own explanation to them.

    1. Two swords cannot fit into the same sheath.

    2. The grapes you can't eat are sour.

    3. Even if you drink milk sitting under a palm tree, people think it wrong.
  • #699806
    This is interesting. We should participate and give our own explanation as instructed, without checking out online. Here's my attempt-

    The first proverb: A sheath is made in a manner that the sword fits snugly into it. However, another sword will not necessarily fit into that sheath and will require its own customized sheath for itself. It indicates that it is not that one would necessarily be able to do two things in a similar manner and not necessarily even the same thing in the same exact manner as previously. Same applies to people. Don't expect two people to react to a situation in the same manner. Even twins have dissimilarities.

    The second proverb: When grapes taste sour, we will think it is not that big an issue even though we really craved to eat them. Similarly, we often feel jealous that somebody got something that we couldn't, so we will dismiss it and deliberately say something critical of it.

    The third proverb: I have not heard of this proverb, frankly, and did not understand the connection between drinking milk and doing so beneath a palm tree.

    [I am moving this to the Improve English category of our forum]

    When you make a commitment, you create hope. When you keep a commitment you create trust! ~ John C. Maxwell

  • #699811
    Two swords cannot fit into the same sheath. That means when the two people are of same thinking line and having same thought process they cannot sail with each other and there would be difference of opinion.
    The grapes you can't eat are sour. Those persons who cannot achieve the success through continued process often discontinue and blame the system that it is not helping them.
    Even if you drink milk sitting under a palm tree, people think it wrong. The person may be genuine and most trustworthy but when he does a wrong thing under the influence of others, people would not tolerate. The above proverbs can be interpreted in many ways as per the experience and the knowledge of the members and there cannot be fixed response for this.

    K Mohan @ Moga
    'Idhuvum Kadandhu Pogum "
    Even this challenging situation would ease

  • #699819
    1. Two Swords can't fit into the same sheath: It is impossible to keep two swords in a sheath. When you keep one it is very comfortable and gets into it very smoothly. There are positions where you can't have two chiefs. It becomes a parallel administration if we have to chiefs. Two kings can't coexist in one kingdom. Yudhistar and Duryodhana can't become the kings of Hathinapura. So it was divided into two and one is given to Yudhistar and the other to Duryodhana. Two swords can't fit in one sheath.
    2. The grapes you can't eat are sour: Generally, grapes are sweetish. Once a person tried to pluck some grapes from a garden. They are very high and this man can't reach them. So he convinced himself saying that they are sour taste and even though I pluck them I can't eat and left the place. The things which you are not able to acquire appears to be not useful to you. I wanted to purchase a pen and I asked the price and it is high. I left it saying that it is looking beautiful but the writing is not coming alright with that pen.
    3. Even if you drink milk sitting under a palm tree, people think it wrong: Tadi is a drink that will be white liquid and it is extracted from the Palm tree. It is sedative-like alcohol. Many people drink this. In Kerala, I think they use a fresh Tadi for making some special dish also. If you are standing under a palm tree during summer and talking milk which is also white in colour, a person seeing that will think that you are consuming Tadi.
    When you are in a bad company people think that you are also bad. If you are sitting in a bar with your friends. Even though you are not taking alcohol but only consuming a soft drink, people think that you are also drinking alcohol with other friends.
    All three proverbs are very popular in the Telugu States.

    always confident

  • #699820
    Here is the clue- From Palm fruit sap palm wine or toddy or Kallu prepared at the top of the tree itself. In South India, people drink palm wine as alcohol.

  • #699843
    1. Two swords cannot fit into the same sheath.
    A sheath is custom-made for one sword to properly fit into it .There will not be free space. It will not serve its purpose when it is lose and has more space. Similarly only one person or one idea -the most fit and proper one-should work in a particular context. This example is used in many day to day contests in our life to emphasis conflicts of interests.

    2. The grapes you can't eat are sour.
    It is derived from the famous moral story where a fox which could not reach a bunch of grapes even after jumping justifies its inability saying that the grapes are sour and hence it did not want to eat it.
    The proverb is thus said to expose people who do not work hard, but feel jealous on others achievements and elude some lame reasons to justify their incapability and incompetence. It also describes about those who could not get some position, but go on to convince others saying that they deliberately forewent that position as it is not good. We would have seen many such people in our workplaces and other areas where we had to associate.

    3. Even if you drink milk sitting under a palm tree, people think it wrong.
    The intoxicant drink ' Palm Toddy" is procured from Palm Trees. That also looks a bit white and look like milk on a glance. People like to drink freshly tapped toddy directly getting it from the tapper under the palm tree itself. So generally when someone is seen drinking standing under a palm tree it can be guessed as he is drinking Palm Toddy. Hence even if one takes milk it will be (mis) taken as drinking toddy only.
    This proverb is used to expose the judgemental attitude of people without attempting to know the full details and facts but jump into a hurried conclusion by the first glance or peripheral view as per their own bias or prejudice. Many times such acts can cause los and damage to others reputation or some other way. It also tells people not to fall victims to such types of judgements, but be strong and consistent on one's right path.

  • #699845
    I have heard of the first two but not aware of the third one though I will try that one too.

    1. Two swords cannot fit into the same sheath - A sheath is a protective cover for the sword and is designed for only one sword. Now, if someone tries to put two swords into the same sheath the second one will not go inside the cover in any way. Similarly, two identical things cannot behave exactly the same way even in the same environment. There will be always some compatibility issues.

    2. The grapes you can't eat are sour - It came from the popular fable of a fox and grapes. It indicates that when you are unable to reach your destination even after trying in many different ways you try to console your mind by saying that the destination was not at all suitable for you.

    3. Even if you drink milk sitting under a palm tree, people think it wrong - Well, babies drink milk and adults drink alcohol. If you drink alcohol in excess you get drunk and may indulge in doing such kind of things which is not acceptable to society. By fermenting Palm sap an alcoholic beverage popularly known as Palm Wine is made. If you are under the palm tree and sipping something, others may always think that you are drinking Palm wine. Now when somebody, however innocent he may be, is seen in a place that is not meant for him others will begin to think that there is something wrong with that person without verifying the details.


    "Life is easier when you enjoy what you do"

  • #699862
    Without any much elaboration, I would say in simple words and in a nutshell.

    1. Never try to do two things at a time and get confused. Do one thing at a time perfectly.
    2. Never long for something that you don't deserve for.
    3. Good cannot be identified in a bad group.

    No life without Sun

  • #699951
    I appreciate all of you for giving apt explanations to the proverbs in a nice way.

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