Monday, January 21, 2008

Wise Konkani Sayings

Wise Konkani Sayings
By Pio Esteves


The richness of any language lies in its proverbs or adages. Wise sayings undoubtedly add flavour to the language and raise its standard. They have been created by our ancestors and we need to preserve them for the future generation.

Brazinho Soares Kalapurkar has come out with a book ‘Konknni Oparincho Jhelo’ on numerous Konkani adages, which he has collected from different sources. He claims that it took him several years to gather countless proverbs, which he did wholeheartedly, for the love of the Konkani language.

The author has painstakingly arranged the axioms in an alphabetical order to make it easier for the reader to track down any maxim, as per his/her choice.

Some of the proverbs which feature in the book include ‘addechea udkan rikami baim bhorona’ (an empty well cannot be filled with artificial water), ‘allsai apovn haddta durbollkai (laziness welcomes poverty), ‘allxeacho dis sorona, vavurteleak rat-ui pavona’ (the day never ends for a lazy person and night is not sufficient for a laborious man), ‘addechem udok narlant ghalear godd zata?’ (Can artificial water turn sweet if dipped in a coconut?)

Special mention is made about guardians in adages like ‘avoi-bapaik dukh dixi, vollvolleank pavxi’ (you will suffer if you hurt your parents), avoik dium naka dukh, sodankal tumkam melltolem sukh’ (you will always enjoy life if you avoid hurting your mother) ‘avoichem bhurgem avoik zodd nhoi’ (a mother’s child is never a burden).

Focusing on idleness, adages like ‘bekar bhonvlear pott bhorona, jevlea bogor bhuk thambona’ (idleness will not feed you and unless you eat hunger will not die), ‘bekar bhonvtoleak man nasta (idle man gains no respect), ‘bekar bhonvon jevnk sodta tachi kaklut konn korta? (Who will pity an idle man who desires to eat?), enlighten the mind.

On love and trust, we have axioms like ‘bebdeak ani pixeak patiyeum nezo’ (never trust a drunkard and a insane person), ‘mog sarki vost dusri na (nothing is comparable to love), ‘mogan mog vaddta, divean divo pett’ta’ (love grows with love and a lamp can be lit with another lamp).

On ‘sufferings,’ there are proverbs, which include ‘sonsta taka Dev posta’ (God cares for the sufferer), ‘sosnnikai ani somjikai na zalear sukh ani dhadosponn na zata’ (if you have no patience and understanding, happiness will not follow), ‘dukha bhonvtonnim sukh, sukha bhonvtonnim dukh’ (sorrow and happiness are entwined), ‘dukh kaddlea bogor sukh mellona’ (unless you suffer you cannot enjoy happiness). Other common proverbs include ‘mag tuka melltelem, darar mar dar ugoddtelem, (seek and you shall receive, knock and the door will be opened), ‘mogan zata tem ragan zaina’ (what can be done through love cannot be done in anger), ‘moro porian xikchem’ (one should learn till the end), ‘monant asa tem sopnant dista’ (what’s there in the mind is visible in a dream), ‘niz mogachem moll duddvamni zaina’ (true value of love cannot be weighed with money).

Perhaps if the author had taken pains in providing the interpretations of the popular Konkani idioms in English simultaneously, the book would have had more weightage and it would have come in handy to any reader. All the same, a sincere effort put in by the author for the compilation, is worth mentioning and deserves appreciation.

(The Navhind Times)

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