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Talk:Armenian proverbs

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Wisdom from the Son of Armenia - http://www.harryterhanian.com

HarryTerhanian.com presents Armenian Culture and Wisdom through timeless proverbs from the "yergir" (old country). This wisdom has sustained Armenians through 25 or more centuries. It has formed the basis of the Armenian Character.

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Ա աEdit

  • Աղւէսը բերանը խաղողին չի հասնում, ասում է՝ խակ է:
    • Transliteration: Aghves@ beran@ khaghoghin chi hasnoom, asoom e khak e.
    • Translation: When the fox can't reach the grape, he says it's unripe.
    • Meaning: When one can't achieve something downplays it.
  • Ամեն փայտ շերեփ չի դառնա, ամեն սար՝ Մասիս:
    • Transliteration: Amen payt sherep chi darna, amen sar Masis.
    • Translation: Not every piece of wood will become a ladle, nor every mountain Masis (the higher peak of Ararat.)
    • Not everyone is capable of achieving the same height.
  • Ամենին մի աչքով է նայում:
    • Transliteration: Amenin mi achqov e nayoom.
    • Translation: S/he sees everyone with one eye.
    • Meaning: S/he sees/treats everyone equally.
  • Աշխարհը մի խոսքի է, ժամանակը ոսկի է:
    • Transliteration: Ashkharh@ mi khosqi e, zhamanak@ voski e.
    • Translation: The world agrees in one word, time is golden.
  • Աչքը ինչ տեսնար, սիրտը չի մոռնար:
    • Transliteration: Achq@ inch tesnar, sirt@ chi mornar.
    • Translation: Whatever the eye sees, the heart won't forget.
  • Առաջ մտածիր, յետոյ խոսիր:
    • Transliteration: Arach mtatzir, heto khosir.
    • Translation: First think, then speak.
  • Արևին ասում է դուրս մի արի՝ ես դուրս եմ եկել:
    • Transliteration: Arevin asoom e doors mi ari, yes doors em yekel.
    • Translation: She tells the sun: don't rise, I have come out.
    • Meaning: Used referring to someone's extreme beauty.

Բ բEdit

  • Բազարի աչքը հանել ես:
    • Transliteration: Bazari achq@ hanel es.
    • Translation: You have taken out the eye of the bazaar.
    • Meaning: You bought the worst stuff in the market.
  • Բախտը մի անգամ է այցելում:
    • Transliteration: Bakht@ mi anqam e aytseloom.
    • Translation: Fortune visits only once.
    • Meaning: Don't miss a good opportunity.

Գ գEdit

  • Գայլի գլխին Աւետարան են կարդում, ասում է՝ շուտ արէ՛ք, գալլէս գնաց:
    • Transliteration: Gayli glkhin Avetaran en kartoom, asoom e shoot arek, galles gnats.
    • Translation: While they are reading the Bible to the wolf, it says: hurry up, my flock is leaving.
    • Meaning: After giving advice on doing good to someone, s/he still hastens to do the bad.
  • Գառը՝ գարնան, ձիւնը՝ ձմռան:
    • Transliteration: Gar@ garnan, dzyoon@ dzmran.
    • Translation: Lamb in the spring, snow in the winter.
    • Meaning: Everything has its own time. [This is also a tongue-twister]
  • Գետը ամեն անգամ գերան չի բերի:
    • Transliteration: Get@ amen anqam geran chi beri.
    • Translation: The river won't bring a log every time.
  • Գիւղը կանգնի՝ գերան կը կոտրի:
    • Transliteration: Gyoogh@ kangni, geran k@ kotri.
    • Translation: If the village stands, it can break a trunk.
    • Meaning: Strength increases in unity.
  • Գողը գողից գողացաւ, Աստւած նայեց՝ զարմացաւ:
    • Transliteration: Gogh@ goghits goghatsav, Astvatz nayets zarmatsav.
    • Translation: The thief stole from the thief, God looked on and got astonished.
  • Գուցէ ուզեցաւ իրեն գցի հորը, դու էլ կը՞ գցես:
    • Transliteration: Gootse oozetsav iran gtsi hor@, doo el k@ gtses?
    • Translation: Maybe s/he wanted to throw herself/himself in the well, would you follow?
    • Meaning: Don't follow others blindly.

Դ դEdit

  • Դուն քուն, բախտդ արթուն:
    • Transliteration: Toun koun, pakhdt artoun.
    • Translation: When you are asleep, your luck works out for you.
    • Meaning: Used when someone gets lucky when least expected.

Ե եEdit

  • Եկաւ ունքը սարքի՝ աչքն էլ քոռացրեց:
    • Transliteration: Yekav oonq@ sarqi, achqn el qoratsrets.
    • Translation: S/he tried to fix the eyebrow, ended up blinding the eye too.
    • Meaning: Used when someone tries to fix something minor, but causes a bigger problem.
  • Երբ որ կացինը եկաւ անտառ, ծառերը ասացին... «Կոտը մերոնցից է:»
    • Transliteration: Erb vor katsin@ ekav antar, tsarer@ asatsin... <<kot@ merontsits e>>
    • Translation: When the axe came to the forest, the trees said: "The handle is one of us."
    • Meaning: There is no one to blame but self in a given situation.
  • Երբ որ մեծնաս այս ամենը կը մոռնաս:
    • Transliteration: Yerp medznas ays ameneh geh mornas.
    • translation: When you grow up you will forget it happened.
    • Meaning: Used in reference for emotional and physical pain(cuts, bumps, worry, concern, etc) in order to comfort the individual from that experience.
  • Երգեր շատ գիտեմ, բայց երգել չգիտեմ:
    • Transliteration: Yerger shat gitem, bayts yergel chgitem.
    • Translation: I know many songs, but I cannot sing.
    • Meaning: I know the method something should be done, but I cannot actually do it.
  • Եօթ անգամ չափիր, մէկ անգամ կտրիր:
    • Transliteration: Yot anqam chapir, mek anqam ktrir.
    • Translation: Measure seven times, cut once.
    • Meaning: Think thoroughly before you act.

Զ զEdit

Է էEdit

  • Էս ականջով լսում է, մյուսով դուրս է անում:
    • Transliteration: Es akanjov lsoom e, myoosov doors e anoom.
    • Translation: S/he hears it from this ear, and throws it out from the other.
    • Meaning: S/he doesn't follow advice.
  • Էշի ականջում է քնել:
    • Transliteration: Eshi akanjoom e gnel.
    • Translation: S/he is sleeping in donkey's ear.
    • Meaning: S/he doesn't listen to advice.

Ը ըEdit

Թ թEdit

  • Թթու է՝ թան չէ,
    Ամեն մարդու բան չէ:
    • Transliteration: Ttu e, tan che, amen mardoo ban che.
    • Translation: It's sour, not tahn [an Armenian drink made of mainly yogurt and water], it's not for everyone.
    • Meaning: Hardships are not tolerable by just anyone; it takes someone with perseverence.

Ժ ժEdit

Ի իEdit

  • Ի՞նչ կապ ունի՝ Ալէքսանդրի բեղերին:
    • Transliteration: Inch kap ooni Aleksandri bekherin?
    • Translation: What is the connection with Alexander's moustache?
    • Meaning: This is mentioned after one brings up something completely off-topic in a conversation.
  • Ինչ որ ցանես, այն կը հնձես:
    • Transliteration: Inch vor tsanes, ayn k@ hndzes.
    • Translation: Whatever you sow, that's what you'll reap.
    • Meaning: You'll receive the consequence of your own actions.
  • Ինչքան լեզու իմանաս՝ այնքան մարդ էս:
    • Transliteration: Inchqan lezoo imanas, aynqan mart es.
    • Translation: You are as many a person as the languages you know.
    • Meaning: This proverb is to emphasize the importance of learning multiple languages.
  • Իրա բաղաջի տակնա կրակ անում:
    • Transliteration: Ira baghaji takna krak anoom.
    • Translation: S/he is making fire under her/his own baghaj [a kind of pastry].
    • Meaning: Even though it may seem otherwise, s/he is bettering the situation for herself/himself.

Լ լEdit

  • Լեզուդ չլներ՝ ագռավները աչքերդ հանել էին:
    • Transliteration: Lezud chlner - agravner@ achqer'd hanel ein.
    • Translation: If not for your tongue, the crows would have gouged out your eyes.
  • Լուից ուխտ են սարքում:
    • Transliteration: Looits ookht en sarqoom.
    • Translation: They make a camel out of a flea.
    • Meaning: They exaggerate a situation/action.

Խ խEdit

  • Խորամանկ աղվեսը երկու ոտով է թակարդն ընկնում:
    • Transliteration: Khoramank aghves@ yerkoo votov e takardn @nknoom.
    • Translation: The sly fox falls in the trap with both legs.
    • Meaning: Being sly/cunning to avoid a problem gets one in double trouble.
  • Խօսքով փիլաւ չեփուիր:
    • Transliteration: khoskov pilav chepvir.
    • Translation: Rice is not cooked with only words.
    • Meaning: Nothing can be done only with words.

Ծ ծEdit

  • Ծառը ինչքան բերք տայ ու բարի, գլուխն էնքան խոնարհ կը պահի:
    • Transliteration: Tzar@ inchqan berq ta oo bari, glookh@ enqan khonarh k@ pahi.
    • Translation: However much fruit a tree bears, it humbles its head that much more.
    • Meaning: The more wisdom one acquires, the more humble s/he becomes.
  • Ծարաւ կտանի ջուրն ու հետ կը բերի:
    • Transliteration: Tzarav ktani joorn oo het k@ beri.
    • Translation: [S/he] will take one to the water and bring him/her back thirsty.
    • meaning: S/he is very cunning pesron.


  • Ծոյլութիւնից սև էշին ասում է՝ օրհնեայ տէր:
    • Transliteration: Tzuylutyunits sev eshin asuom e "orhnya ter".
    • Translation: Out of laziness, s/he calls to the black donkey "bless me Lord".
    • Meaning: This proverb emphasizes the laziness of one [This is because an extremely lazy person would not raise her/his head to see who s/he is meeting, and could potentially confuse a black donkey with a priest, who wears black].

Կ կEdit

Հ հEdit

  • Համը հոտից հանեց:
    • Transliteration: Ham@ hotits hanets.
    • Translation: S/he took the taste out of the smell.
    • Meaning: Enough is enough. Or: S/he overdid it.
  • Հարսի ոռով փեսուն լավություն ա անում:
    • Transliteration: Harsi vorov pesun lavutyun a anum.
    • Translation: Uses the bride's ass to do a favor to the groom.
    • Meaning: Refers to favor done at someone else's expense or effort.
  • Հարսը պարել չի կարող, ասում է՝ գետինը ծուռ է:
    • Transliteration: Hars@ parel chi karogh, asoom e getin@ tzoor e.
    • Translation: The bride doesn't know how to dance, she says the floor is slanted.
    • Meaning: One blames her/his own incompetence on the circumstances.
  • Հարևանի հարսի հետևը կարմիրա:
    • Transliteration: Harevani harsi hetev@ karmira.
    • Translation: The back of the neighbor's bride is red.
    • Meaning: The grass is greener on the other side.
  • Հաց ու պանիր, կէր ու պարիր:
    • Transliteration: Hats oo panir, ker oo parir.
    • Translation: Bread and cheese, eat and dance.
    • Meaning: Be satisfied with whatever little you may have.
  • Հետևին ասում է հետևիցս մի արի` հոտ ես տալի:
    • Transliteration: Hetevin asoom e hetevitss mi ari, hot es tali .
    • Translation: S/he tells his/her ass: don't follow me, you stink.
    • Meaning: Used when someone is seeing himself/herself as better than anyone around him/her.
  • Հետևն էլ կպած չելներ կտար օտարի:
    • Transliteration: Hetevn el kpatz chelner ktar otari.
    • Translation: If his/her ass wasn't attached, s/he would give that away too.
    • Meaning: Refers to someone's extreme generosity.
  • Հյուրը Աստծունն է:
    • Transliteration: Hyoor@ Astsoonn e.
    • Translation: A guest belongs to God.
    • Meaning: Show hospitality to your guests.

Ձ ձEdit

  • Ձուագողը ձիագող կը դառնայ:
    • Transliteration: Dzooagogh@ dziagogh k@ darna.
    • Translation: An egg-thief will become a horse-thief.
    • Meaning: Great misdeeds start from small mistakes.

Ղ ղEdit

Ճ ճEdit

  • Ճակատագրից չես փախչի:
    • Transliteration: Tjakatagritz ches pakhchi.
    • Translation: You cannot escape from destiny.
  • Ճիշտ կարծես փղի քթիցա ընկել:
    • Transliteration: Tjisht kartzes pghi ktitsa @nkel.
    • Translation: As if s/he has fallen from an elephant's nose.
    • Meaning: Refers to someone being a snob.
  • Ճտերն աշնանն են հաշվում:
    • Transliteration: Tjtern ashnann en hashvum.
    • Translation: Chicks ought to be counted in the fall.
    • Meaning: It is the end result that matters.
  • Ճշտասողի գլխարկը ծակ է:
    • Transliteration: Tjstasoghi glkhark@ tzak e.
    • Translation: There is a hole in the truth-teller's hat.
    • Meaning: Used when one is telling the truth, but not being taken seriously.

Մ մEdit

  • Մեկ նալինա խփում՝ մեկ մեխին:
    • Transliteration: Mek nalina khpoom, mek mekhin.
    • Translation: S/he once hits the horseshoe, and once hits the nail.
    • Meaning: Used when someone alternates in one's position in an argument/deal.
  • Մեռանք գիժ քունելով՝ մի հատ խելոք ռաստ չեկավ:
    • Transliteration: Merranq gizh qunelov, mi hat kheloq rrast chekav.
    • Translation: We screwed with idiots to death, yet we never met one clever person.
    • Meaning: "I looked for (and couldn't find) one clever man in a thousand."
  • Մէկ գիժ քար գցեց հորը, քառասուն խելօք չկարողացան հանել:
    • Transliteration: Mek gizh qar gtsets hor@, qarasoon kheloq chkaroghatsan hanel.
    • Translation: One idiot threw a stone in the well, forty wise people could not get it out.
    • Meaning: Being careless can cause such problems that many a mind cannot solve.
  • Մէկ ծաղիկով գարուն չի գայ:
    • Transliteration: Mek tzaghikov garoon chi ga.
    • Translation: Spring will not come with one flower.
  • Մէկ ձեռքը ծափ չի տայ:
    • Transliteration: Mek dzerq@ tzap chi ta.
    • Translation: One hand will not clap.
    • Meaning: Some things cannot be done by one person alone.
  • Մէկը տերտերին է սիրում, մէկը տերտերակնկան:
    • Transliteration: Mek@ terterin e siroom, mek@ terteraknkan.
    • Translation: One likes the priest, and one likes the priest's wife.
    • Meaning: Different people have different tastes.
  • Մինչև հաստը բարակի, բարակը կկտրվի:
    • Transliteration: Minchev hast@ baraki, barak@ kktrvi.
    • Translation: By the time the thick gets thin, the thin will tear.
    • Meaning: Before the fat one slims, the slim one will die.
  • Մինչև Շուշանը զարդարվի, ժամը կը լրվի:
    • Transliteration: Minchev Shooshan@ zartarvi, zham@ k@ lrvi.
    • Translation: By the time Shooshan gets ready, the mass will be over.
    • Meaning: Someone is taking too long to get ready.
  • Մի վախենա վարար գետից, վախեցիր մարմանդ գետից:
    • Transliteration: Mi vakhena varar getits, vakhetsir marmand getits.
    • Translation: Don't be afraid of the turbulent river, be afraid of the moderate river.
    • English equivalent: Barking dog does not bite.
  • Միութիւնը՝ ոյժ է:
    • Transliteration: Miootyoon@ oozh e.
    • Translation: Unity is power.
  • Միսը ձեզի, ոսկորը ինծի:
    • Transliteration: Missuh tsezi, vosgoruh indzi.
    • Translation: The meat is yours, the bones are mine.
    • Meaning: Do anything you like to my son/daughter in order to teach him, as long as he/she is kept alive.
  • Մուկը ըսկի ինքը ծակը չի մտնում, հլը ցախավելն էլ կապել ա վոռից:
    • Transliteration: Mook@ @ski inq@ tzak@ chi mtnum, hl@ tzakhaveln el kapel a voritz.
    • Translation: Even though there is barely room enough for the mouse, it is trying to enter the hole with a besom tied to its ass.

Յ յEdit

Ն նEdit

  • Նույնիսկ էփած հավի ծիծաղն է գալիս:
    • Transliteration: Nooynisk epatz havi tzitzaghn e galis.
    • Translation: Even a cooked hen would laugh.
    • Meaning: The situation is very ridiculous.
  • Նւիրւած ձիու ատամները չեն հաշւի:
    • Transliteration: Nvirvatz dzioo atamner@ chen hashvi.
    • Translation: Don't count the teeth of a gift horse.
    • Meaning: Be grateful for your gifts. English equivalent: Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.

Շ շEdit

  • Շան անունը տուր ու փետը վերցրու:
    • Transliteration: Shan anoon@ toor oo pet@ vertsroo.
    • Translation: Speak of the dog and pick up the stick.
    • Meaning: This proverb is used when someone shows up right when her/his name is mentioned in a conversation [picking up the stick is symbolic for being ready/expecting]. Similar to English "Speak of the devil."
  • Շինողը միջից հանեց:
    • Transliteration: Shinogh@ michits hanets.
    • Translation: S/he brought its maker out of it.
    • Meaning: Used when someone is being extremely curious/inquisitive.
  • Շունը՝ շան միս չի ուտի:
    • Transliteration: Shoon@ shan mis chi ooti.
    • Translation: Dog won't eat dog's meat.

Ո ոEdit

  • Ոչ իմ հալը, ոչ քո հարսանիք գալը:
    • Transliteration: Voch im hal@, voch qo harsaniq gal@.
    • Translation: Neither my situation, nor you coming to a wedding.
    • Meaning: I am not in the mood for what you're doing now.
  • Որտեղ հաց, այնտեղ կաց: / Ուր հաց, հոն կաց:
    • Transliteration: Vortegh hats, ayntegh kats. / Oor hats, hon gats
    • Translation: Wherever there's bread, stay there.
    • Meaning: Man is obliged to stay where he makes money, where his job is located. Also, when matters touch the income of a person, there is no compromise in that.
  • Որտեղ պանիր, այնտեղ բանիր:
    • Transliteration: Vortegh panir, ayntegh banir.
    • Translation: Wherever there's cheese, work there.
  • Ով աշխատի՝ նա կուտի:
    • Transliteration: Ov ashkhati, na kooti.
    • Translation: Whoever works, s/he will eat.
  • Ով ալարի՝ ոչ դալարի:
    • Transliteration: Ov alari voch dalari.
    • Translation: Whoever becomes lazy, s/he won't become green.
    • Meaning: It takes work to make progress.
  • Ով՝ տռի, ով՝ էթա սանատորիա:
    • Transliteration: Ov t@ri, ov eta sanatoria.
    • Translation: One farts, and another goes to a resort.
    • Meaning: Sometimes one is punished for a crime they didn't commit (or is rewarded while lacking merit).
  • Ուս ուսի որ տանք, սարեր շուռ կտանք:
    • Transliteration: Oos oosi vor tanq, sarer shoor ktanq.
    • Translation: Once we give shoulder to shoulder, we can turn mountains.
    • Meaning: Call for unity.
  • Ուտեմ, տիտեմ [նստեմ], մթնի՝ քնեմ:
    • Transliteration: Ootem, titem [nstem], mtni qnem.
    • Translation: Let me eat, let me sit, when it gets dark let me sleep
    • Meaning: Refers to the extent of one's laziness.
  • Ուրիշի հարսի հետևը կարմիրա:
    • Transliteration: Oorishi harsi hetev@ karmira.
    • Translation: The back of the bride of someone else is red.
    • Meaning: The grass on the other side is greener.

Չ չEdit

  • Չկայ չարիք՝ առանց բարիք:
    • Transliteration: Chka chariq, arants bariq.
    • Translation: There is no evil without goodness.

Պ պEdit

  • Պատերազմ չկայ երբ որ մարդիկ՝ շիտակ մարդ են:
    • Transliteration: Paterazm chka yerp vor martik shitak mart en.
    • Translation: There is no reason for war that reasonable men cannot resolve.

Ջ ջEdit

  • Ջուրը գնում է, ավազը մնում է. Մարդը մէռնում է, հիշատակը մնում է:
    • Transliteration: Joor@ gnoom e, avaz@ mnoom e; Mart@ mernoom e, hishatak@ mnoom e.
    • Translation: The water goes, the sand remains; The person dies, the memory remains.
    • Meaning: It is the memory of the person that has a longer life than his/her own, like water leaving the sand.
  • Ջուրը ճամբան կը ճարի:
    • Transliteration: Joor@ tjampan k@ tjari.
    • Translation: The water will find its way.
    • Meaning: One with the potential to get something done, will do it.

Ռ ռEdit

Ս սEdit

  • Սատկած հավի վրա էլ որ ոտք դնես կճռռա:
    • Transliteration: Satkatz havi vra el vor vortq dnes ktjrra.
    • Translation: If you step on a dead hen, it'll also squeak.
    • Meaning: Used when someone is being quiet/reserved until someone else brings up a certain topic.
  • Սարը սարին չի հասնի, մարդը մարդուն՝ կը հասնի:
    • Transliteration: Sar@ sarin chi hasni, mart@ martoon k@ hasni.
    • Translation: A mountain won't get to a mountain, but a human will get to a human.
    • Meaning: Don't mistreat a person thinking that there's no tomorrow and there won't be any consequences.
  • Սուտի ոտքերը կարճ են:
    • Transliteration: Sooti votqer@ kartj en.
    • Translation: The feet of a lie are short.
    • Meaning: A lie cannot get too far and the truth will finally come out.

Վ վEdit

Տ տEdit

  • Տռեմ ես, բամփեմ քեզ:
    • Transliteration: Trem yes, bampem qez.
    • Translation: Let me fart, and then hit you.
    • Meaning: Used when one is blaming another for the consequences of her/his own actions.

Ր րEdit

Ց ցEdit

Ւ ւEdit

Փ փEdit

  • Փափուկ լեզւով նոյնիսկ օձը բնից դուրս կը քաշես:
    • Transliteration: Papook lezvov noonisk odz@ bnits doors k@ qashes.
    • Translation: With a soft tongue(speech) you can even pull a snake out of its nest.
    • Meaning: You speak very gently - or - try to speak gently...You can convince others by speaking gently.
  • Փետը վերցնես՝ գող շունը կիմանա:
    • Transliteration: Pet@ vertsnes, gogh shoon@ kimana.
    • Translation: When you pick up the stick, the robber dog knows.
    • Meaning: Guilty people are always on guard, and immediately know when you refer to their wrongdoing.
  • Փողը հաշիվ ա սիրում:
    • Transliteration: Pogh@ hashiv a sirum.
    • Translation: Money likes a count.

Ք քEdit

  • Քանի լեզու իմանաս, այնքան մարդ ես:
    • Transliteration: Qani lezoo imanas, aynqan mart es.
    • Translation: However many languages you know, that much of a human you are.
    • Meaning: Encouragement to learn languages.
  • Քեզանից Պողոս Պետրոս դուրս չի գայ:
    • Transliteration: Kezanitz Poghos Petros doors chi ga.
    • Translation: Neither Poghos nor Petros will become of you.
    • Meaning: At this rate you won't become anyone.
  • Քեզնից քեզ բոր [բորբոքում] ամալ գա [առաջանա]:
    • Transliteration: Keznits kez bor amal ga.
    • Translation: From you grows a wound on you.
    • Meaning: The self is responsible for mishappenings from misdeeds.
  • ՔեՖ անողին՝ քեֆ չի պակսիլ:
    • Transliteration: Kef anoghin kef chi paksil.
    • Translation: Joy won't lessen for the joyful (or the partier).
    • Etymology: This enters the language from a story concerning Harun al Rashid [Abbasid caliph] who went around at nights disguised as a poor person to see what's going on in his capital, Baghdad. In one of these night journeys he encountered a poor person who would always party and have fun eventhough he didn't have much. The story continues as Harun tries to make him more miserable to see whether his joy will continue, and since it does, Harun rewards him in the end. An English language retelling of this story, as also told in Armenian by Hovhannes Toumanian as "A Gift of Gold," can be found in Virginia A. Tashjian's "Three Apples Fell from Heaven," p. 63.

Օ օEdit

  • Օտարի հարսի հետևը կարմիրա:
    • Transliteration: Otari harsi hetev@ karmira.
    • Translation: The behind of another's bride is red.
    • English equivalent: Grass is greener on the other side.

Ֆ ֆEdit