We brought you Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa proverbs, and now, it’s time to shine the spotlight on another Nigerian language with rich wise sayings that enhance conversation.

This article focuses on Bini, one of the Edoid languages spoken in Southern Nigeria. Whether you’re a child of the soil or a language nerd looking to brush up, here are 15 Bini proverbs and their meanings to kickstart your learning journey.

15 Bini Proverbs and Their Meanings

Omo na gba shi ukoko, o vha mi eseke a rhue

Translation: A child on the back doesn’t find a fortune.

Meaning: You have to leave your comfort zone to achieve success.

Erhali o ka to se omo a, o mi ewuen na

Translation: A child once scalded by fire gets scared of ashes.

Meaning: Experience is the best teacher.

Ogbe no gbe, la a mase a a na

Translation: One can only plan for a day that has come.

Meaning: Learn to make do with what you have.

A gha ye omo ku a ghi mhu gi enibie ore

Translation: After playing with a child, give them back to their parents.

Meaning: Never be hyper-fixated on what doesn’t belong to you.

Obo oguo o vha guese ache

Translation: One hand can’t cover the pot.

Meaning: Learn to seek help from others.

Ai kha me ovbie orimwin ighe oma he erha vbi iye se

Translation: You don’t tell the children of the deceased that they didn’t bury their parents properly.

Meaning: Don’t remind people who are hurt about their problems.

A khe li omo o de e de, oli gbaga

Translation: When a child is cautioned, they should heed such.

Meaning: It’s important to heed warnings when you get them.

Ai vben ekpo mase no fien uvun

Translation: Not having a pocket is better than having one with holes.

Meaning: What’s worth doing is worth doing well.

Erokhi ma mien ebe,ele

Translation: If the chameleon doesn’t see danger, it won’t run.

Meaning: There’s a reason for everything.

Omo na gba shi ukoko, o vha yese khi ode oki o nue

Translation: A child carried on the back doesn’t realise the road to the market is far.

Meaning: Ignorance is bliss.

Okhiami o la a gbe ima ghue le

Translation: One’s stomach could be full even when they’re hungry.

Meaning: You can keep a clear mind even in chaos.

Omo o wa lewe, lo rhi okholi gbe enejo

Translation: That a child isn’t entitled to eat kolanut is why the elderly were captured on the battlefield.

Meaning: Don’t be quick to disregard the opinions of those you dim beneath you.

Agbon ghi salo

Translation: There’s not enough time to use the world.

Meaning: Tomorrow isn’t promised. Do what you want today.

Omo o kha khii le dobe tu agami aa lue, a wuon wen naali

Translation: If a child insists they can swallow an axe, simply hold it for them.

Meaning: Sometimes, let people learn from their mistakes.

Omo o ka khi le a mhuo li ogbo, a a lu o omi olimhi

Translation: A child who fails to appreciate their family is treated as an orphan.

Meaning: Learn to cherish what you have.

Enjoyed learning about Bini proverbs? You should get into this: 15 French Proverbs and Their Meanings

Seen our Valentine’s Special yet? We brought back three couples we interviewed in 2019 – one now with kids, one now married and the last, still best friends – to share how their relationships have evolved over the previous five years. Watch the second episode below:



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