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Japanese Proverbs





The Japanese language is filled with proverbs of all sorts, many from classical references from ancient Chinese to modern versions of English proverbs, all used in every aspect of the language. Whether you are traveling to Japan for fun or on business, or are living there, you'll find proverbs indispensible to understanding and using the daily language. Browse below to find the ones you want or simply explore the many possible ways to express yourself in Japanese.



勇将の下に弱卒なし
[ゆうしょうのもとにじゃくそつなし, yuushou no moto no jakusotsu nashi] a good officer will make good men (lit.: there is no cowardice under a brave general; i.e.: lead by example)

優勝劣敗
[ゆうしょうれっぱい, yuushou reppai] survival of the fittest (lit.: the superior wins, the inferior fails)

友情は一体同心
[ゆうじょうはいったいどうしん, yuujou wa ittai doushin] friendship is the same heart in one body

友情は精神の結婚なり
[ゆうじょうはせいしんのけっこんなり, yuujou wa seishin no kekkon nari] friendship is a marriage of souls

遊女の誠と卵の四角はない
[ゆうじょのまこととたまごのしかくはない, yuujo no makoto to tamago no shikaku wa nai] a sincere whore no more exists than does a square egg

油断大敵
[ゆだんたいてき, yudan taiteki] carelessness is a great enemy


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