07 February 2008

Thursday Thirteen: A World of Advice

By Anna C. Bowling

All the world loves a lover, and for centuries, has had choice words to say about it as well. No matter where or when our characters have their happily ever after, chances are they'll have friends, family and hangers-on with something to say about every step of the process. Consider some of these:

  • We bachelors grin, but you married men laugh until your hearts ache. – English

  • Old bachelors and old maids are either too good or too bad. – Basque

  • A short courtship is the best courtship. – Manx

  • Nobody's sweetheart is ugly. - Dutch

  • With a sweetheart, you can have paradise in a hut. - Russian

  • When the groom is desired, the bride doesn't need words. - Yiddish

  • Marriages are not as they are made, but as they turn out. - Italian

  • A foolish bride gets no presents. - Indian (Bihar)

  • In bed, husband and wife. Out of bed, guests. - Chinese

  • Love or fire in your trousers is not easy to conceal. - Swedish

  • Loving one who loves another is a bellyful of trouble. - African (Hausa)

  • Take a good wife even if you have to sell your pots and kettles. - Japanese

  • When husband and wife agree with each other, they can dry up the ocean with buckets. - Vietnamese

  • The above are taken from the Prentice Hall Encylopedia of World Proverbs by Wolfgang Meider, a wonderful resource for traditional wisdom from around the world. What advice might your hero or heroine's people have to give on love in all its forms?

    Photo courtesy SXC.hu