Danish Proverbs (601-677)

When the helm is gone the ship will soon be wrecked.

A timid man has little chance.

The horse must go to the manger,
and not the manger to the horse.

It is a bad hen that lays her eggs away from the farm.

The hen lives by pickings as the lion by prey.

The hen is bad off when the egg teaches her how to cackle.

No man is so tall that he need never stretch,
and none so small that he need never stoop.

It is a poor horse that is not worth its oats.

He sits well who can rise without help.

It is difficult to tie an unborn horse to the manger.

It is too late to throw water on the cinders
when the house is burnt down.

You cannot make a good hunting-horn of a pig's tail.

Take help of many, advice of few.

That is a poor help that helps you
from the featherbed to the straw.

The drunken man's joy is often the sober man's sorrow.

Many have too much, but none have enough.

Better the child cry than the old man.

When joy is in the parlor, sorrow is in the passage.

Do not judge the dog by his hairs.

An ill-tempered dog has a scarred nose.

The dog that is forced into the woods will not hunt many deer.

He that lies down with dogs will get up with fleas.

To bait and to grease does not retard a journey.

Every little fish expects to become a whale.

While the dogs yelp, the hare flies to the wood.

Many dogs are the death of the hare.

Young dogs have sharp teeth.

By gnawing skin a dog learns to eat leather.

Mad dogs get their coats torn.

He that wants to hang a dog says that it bites the sheep.

The dog will not get free by biting his chain.

A dog is a dog whatever his color.

A modest dog seldom grows fat.

Chop, and you will have splinters.

He that courts injury will obtain it.

Crooked iron may be straightened with a hammer.

Bite not the dog that bites.

A man is bound by his word, an ox with a hempen cord.

A poor man has few acquaintances.

You must judge a maiden at the kneading
trough, and not in a dance.

It is folly to take a thorn out of another's foot
and put it into your own.

Few have luck, all have death.

If it is to be luck, the bull may as well calve as the cow.

You must have good luck to catch hares with a drum.

He is easy to lure who is ready to follow.

A man does not look behind the door unless he has stood there himself.

Lambs don't run into the mouth of the sleeping wolf.

Lies and gossip have a wretched offspring.

Better half a loaf than none at all.

Great lords will have much, and poor folk can give but little.

To live long is to suffer long.

Life at court is often a short cut to hell.

The silent man is most trusted.

Love and poverty are hard to conceal.

All wish to live long, but none to be called old.

The Lord will not fail to come,
though he may not come on horseback.

Ten no's are better than one lie.

To know the law and do the right are two things.

Law helps the waking, luck may come to the sleeping.

To give counsel to a fool is like throwing water on a goose.

A lord without land is like a cask without wine.

Let a child have its will and it will not cry.

A drunken man may soon be made to dance.

Lords and fools speak freely.

He who would leap high must take a long run.

To circumstances and custom the law must yield.

Lawyers and painters can soon change white to black.

Kisses are the messengers of love.

Better no law than law not enforced.

A good king is better than an old law.

Better walk on wooden legs than
be carried on a wooden pier.

Labor has a bitter root, but a sweet taste.

It is difficult to hide what everybody knows.

He is worthy of sweets, who has tasted bitters.

Old swine have hard snouts, old oxen hard horns.

A slight suspicion may destroy a good repute.

Better a salt herring on your own table
than a fresh pike on another man’s.

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