In each issue of Continental Kids, we have collected proverbs from all over the world on the themes HOME / TOGETHER / JOURNEY and GIFT. I really enjoy the way proverbs allow us insight into the wisdom and perspective of different cultures. It’s also fun when cultures express the same idea in different ways.

I wonder how far back proverbs go? Google says people like proverbs because they connect them to other people and the wisdom of the past. So maybe by hunting down all these proverbs we are trying to feel connection with people who have gone before? Surely, I am not the first person in my ancestry to say things such as, “When in Rome…” or “Home is where the heart is”? They have been repeated over and over again because they resonate on such a deep psychological level with all humans.

Some proverbs even become so familiar to us all, that we don’t even need to finish saying them. Their meaning is implied, such as “A rolling stone…” or “If at first you don’t succeed…”

Here are some proverbs about gifts from around the world that you may or may not have heard:


Gifts break rocks. – Portuguese Proverb

A small gift is better than a great promise. – German Proverb

He who refuses a gift will not fill his barn. – Sierra Leoneon Proverb

The gift itself can be light but carry a heavy message. – Chinese Proverb

Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth. – Dutch Proverb


Our favourite from Issue 4 would have to be this one, which we made into a printable for you!

Click here to download a high res PDF.

A proverb can tell you so much about a culture’s attitude towards different things, can’t it? Is there a proverb you find yourself saying often?