It’s well that ends well! Today ends the 3-day proverbs challenge from the works of the master story teller Achebe. There’s a lot more than has been shared here however. You can always get your hands on his works and enjoy it all.

Here we go…

☠ The death that will kill a man begins as an appetite.

🐜The fly that perches on a mound of dung may strut around as it likes, it cannot move the mound.

🎶 Even the flute player must sometimes stop to wipe his nose

⚱️A man who visits a craftsman at work finds a sullen host.

💪 We do not bypass a man and enter his compound.

🎶 When you see an old woman stop in her dance to point again and again in the same direction we can be sure that somewhere there something happened long ago which touched the roots of her life.

🙀 We should first chase away the wild cat; afterwards, we blame the hen.

💯 He is a fool who treats his brother worse than a stranger.

🙍‍♂️If a man seeks for a companion who acts entirely like himself he’ll live in solitude.

Thanks for been part of the challenge. Blessings!

Image Credit: BBC

©ayansola ibukun



Hello good people!

So it’s the second day of the 3-day Proverbs Challenge from the stables of Achebe and I’m set to regale you with more of his interesting proverbs.

Meanwhile, permit me to serve you an ‘appetizer before the main course’. It’s a short excerpt from his magnum opus Things Fall Apart. Each time I read through that section of the novel, I can’t help but laugh. It’s about a man Obiako who went to consult the Oracle in order to find a solution to his hardship. I think you’ll find it interesting…

‘Obiako has always been a strange one’, said Nwakibe. ‘I have heard that many years ago, when his father had not been dead very long, he had gone to consult the Oracle. The Oracle said to him, “Your dead father wants you to sacrifice a goat to him”. Do you know what he told the Oracle? He said, “Ask my dead father if he ever had a fowl when he was alive. 😂

😎Okay, enough playing around… Now to the main course…

🐀A man of sense does not go on hunting little bush rodents when his age mates are after big game.

🛑Until a man wrestles with one of those who make a path across his homestead the others will not stop.

🍠 Sometimes when we have given a piece of yam to a child, we beg him to give us a little from it, not because we really want to eat it but because we want to test our child.

⚕ A disease that has never been seen before cannot be cured with everyday herbs.

🦎 The lizard that jumped from the high iroko tree to the ground said he would praise himself if no one else did.

🐦 Eneke the birds says that since men have learnt to shoot without missing, he has learnt to fly without perching.

🌿 When two brothers fight a stranger reaps the harvest.

Thanks for stopping by. Tomorrow is another day…

Image Credit: BBC

©ayansola Ibukun


He is referred to as the father of Modern African Literature and perhaps the most read African author. But more importantly, he is my most favorite author from Africa. His name is Chinua Achebe.

Among other things, I find his use of language intriguing. The way he infuses the traditional African worldview (the Igbo culture particularly) into his works is such a delight. But how can you even refer to his works without a recourse to his rich use of proverbs? According to him, “proverbs are the palm-oil with which words are eaten“.

I love proverbs and Achebe never fails to supply them in great measure. I thought to share some of them with you. Hence, for the next three days, I’ll be treating you to some of the proverbs used in his works. They are full of wisdom and witty at the same time. Enjoy!

😱 It is praiseworthy to be brave and fearless…but sometimes it is better to be a coward. We often stand in the compound of a coward to point at the ruins where a brave man used to live. The man who has never submitted to anything will soon submit to the burial mat.

🤝 When a handshake goes beyond the elbow we know it has turned to another thing.

🔥 You do not put a piece of live coal into a child’s palm and ask him to carry it with care.

😨 A coward may cover the ground with his words but when the time comes to fight he runs away.

🎭 The world is like a mask dancing. If you want to see it well you do not stand in one place.

🦎 A man who brings home any-infested faggots should not complain if he is visited by lizards.

☠ The death that will kill a man begins as an appetite.

Thanks for reading!

Image Credit: Paris Review

©ayansola ibukun