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Sources of Proverbs



I want to emphasize however that while it is interesting to reel a parable from a writer's binded collections, not all that are in those collections are actual EDO parables or proverbs. Many of them are imports from other groups and of course, the whiteman's and translated into EDO for inclusive binding purposes. Perhaps, those writers may themselves not even know that some of those parables are not EDOIDS'. All the same, they all serve their respective similar intents and purposes. A case in point is the CATS and RATS - belling the Cats by the rats parable. That one was not an original EDO proverb. It is European.

Let me emphasize here however, that there is such a very thin line between what may be a proverb/parable from one group of people to the other. A natural and original proverb of one people, by same people and for same people, can also be a natural and original proverb/parable for several other groups of people, by these groups of people and for these groups of people respectively. This reasoning is based on the concept of universal forms, formations, leaning, behaviors, components and expectations. A natural form with associated behavior in one part of the world, can and is often same in several other parts of the world and in some physical cases, anywhere in the cosmos. An adaptive translation of such sets of variables in combinatorial and or associative functions from the bases of long term experiences and exposures to same, would yield similar or perhaps, an exact translation and usage as well as reactive inclinations of all people with such exposures in spite of localities or locations. This is the bases of universal similitude and in this case, parabolic and proverbial.


The above, also makes it some-what difficult to apply simple similitude in the cultures of people, as the fundamental driver for determining and reaching a conclusive positioning about the origin of a group of people. The possible implication and actual reality, perhaps, beyond real proof, is that such classified people or group of people may not even be related and may never have met. THIS IS A CASE FOR DEEP THOUGHTS. {Nowa, we have some > > unfinished discussions on these things...remember?}


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By what method does one determine that a proverb is originally European? They cannot be carbon dated. Pity that we did not put things down in writing.

You say: 'A case in point is the CATS and RATS - belling the Cats by the rats parable. That one was not an original EDO proverb. It is European.'

How do you know that? If so do you know when it crossed over into Edo literature? That our generation heard it first in the white man's school does not mean it did not exist in our own culture - from which we are increasingly alienated. There are parables that exist in multiple cultures.

There are parables that are peculiar to certain cultures. I have had fun here in South Carolina teasing some English Professors with some Edo proverbs that certainly do not exist in English. I have also done some cross referencing with books of African proverbs from outside Nigeria. There is some overlap - but not much.

Poser: Would a parable in the Bible be considered European? Yet, if it got disseminated via Christianity, it just might be noticed across cultural lines. And its judaic origins may be missed - not to mention even earlier origins perhaps even from Africa - preceding the old testament.

When we sent ambassadors to Portugal did we impart any proverbs and parables to the white man? Or did our representative simply sit in the court of that country moping?