French Proverbs and English equivalents

Do you know all the equivalent of English proverbs in French and Vice & Versa?

Better one eye than quite blind! Mieux vaut être borgne qu'aveugle.

Learning French is not only about approaching Vocabulary and Grammar !!

You must also try to understand the meaning of idiomatics French expressions and be familiar with French anecdotes and funny sentences.

Our French team tried to decrypter for you the traditional proverbs which will serve you in your next journey in France !

We provide you with a small guide to interpret the most common and tricky French proverbs!

The most common French Proverbs translated and explain to English

A chaque jour suffit sa peine.
It is necessary to support(bear) the current troubles without thinking in advance to those that the future can reserve us.

L’appétit vient en mangeant.
More we have more we want to have more.

Après la pluie, le beau temps
The happiness often succeeds the misfortune

A quelque chose malheur est bon
The events which we consider regretable are sometimes an advantage for the individual and we know him(it) only after a while

C’est en forgeant qu’on devient forgeron.
Due to practicing a thing(matter), we become skillful there.

Le chat parti, les souris dansent.
When the person in charge is absent, the subordinates turn to good account their freedom.

Deux avis valent mieux qu’un.
It is better to consult several persons before acting.

Entre l’arbre et l’écorce il ne faut pas mettre le doigt.
You should not intervene in a quarrel.

L’habit ne fait pas la moine
Appearances are misleading

Il faut tourner sa langue sept fois dans sa bouche avant de parler.
You should turn your tongue 7 times in your mouth before you speak.

On ne fait pas d’omelette sans casser d’oeufs.
We do not arrive a result without any trouble.

Petit à petit l’oiseau fait son nid.
With a will and by means of perseverance we achieve our purpose.

Vouloir c’est pouvoir.
It is the will which allows us to make a success(to succeed).

The 20 most famous English proverbs translated to french

Long absent, soon forgotten
Qui s'absente, se fait oublier

He who's afraid of leaves,Must not come into a wood
Qui a peur des feuilles,N'aille pas au bois.

Assiduity makes all things easy.
L'habitude rend tout facile.

Things hardly attained,Are long retained
Ce qu'on apprend péniblement,Se retient plus longtemps

Bacchus has drowned more men,Than Neptune.
Le vin a noyé plus de gensque l'eau.

More words than one, Go to a bargain.
On ne se lie pas au premier mot.

Better die a beggar, Than live a beggar.
Mieux vaut mourrir ruiné,Que de vivre affamé.

Well begun,Half ended.
Affaire bien enfilée,Est à demi terminé.

A bird in the hand,Is worth two in the bush.
Il vaut mieux tenir que courir.

Better one eye than quite blind.
Mieux vaut être borgne qu'aveugle.

He that goes a borrowing,Goes a sorrowing.
Qui paie avec l'argent d'autrui,Achète force soucis..

Charity begins at home.
Charité bien ordonnée commence par soi même.

Chidren, when little, make parents fools,When great, mads
Petits enfants dont on raffole,Devenus grands, ils vous désolent.

The nearer the chuch, The further from God.
Etre homme d'église,N'est pas toujours être homme de Dieu.

Confession of a fault, is half amended.
Faute avouée est à moitié pardonnée.

Shameless craving must have a shamful nay.
A demande insolente, réponse tranchante.

An ounce of discretion is worth a pound of wit.
Une once de bon sens vaut une livre d'esprit

First come, first served.
Premier venu, premier servi.

A friend in need, is a friend indeed.
Amitié dans la peine, amitié certaine.

Give a thing, and take a thing
Donne si tu veux recevoir.

Free French Lessons | Contact | Home |

French Proverbs
Learn French Help

©2004. Transcity Properties Ltd, 32 Alverton, Great Linford, Milton Keynes, MK14 5EF, Bucks, United Kingdom.

Share this page:
Enjoy this page? Please pass it on. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.


Custom Search


Get French lessons and verbs emailed direct to you free

Get lots of useful French lessons and French verbs sent to you each week free by email, from the 200 Words a Day accelerated language learning team. Great for learning, review and consolidating your French knowledge.

Yes, send me my free Learn French newsletters. My details are:


Your privacy is important to us. We do not sell our mailing lists.