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Top 50 Irish Sayings Proverbs
There's one thing that all Irishmen have in common. No, we're not talking about a propensity for drinking before noon. We're talking about the gift of gab. From heralded scribes like Oscar Wilde and Jonathan Swift to that drunken guy at the end of the bar, the sons and daughters of Erin are blessed with an ability to spin yarns and spout witticisms. And that's great if you're Irish, but what if you have the misfortune of being born hundreds of miles away from the Emerald Isle?
You could always make a pilgrimage to Ireland's Blarney Castle where, legend has it, anyone who kisses the structure's mythical Blarney Stone will gain the gift of eloquence. Then again, you could save yourself the trip (and a whole lot of lip fungus) simply by reading our list of the top 50 Irish sayings and proverbs. These colorful expressions are short and sweet and — unlike the Blarney Stone — they don't smell like Chapstick and Guinness.
1. May the luck of the Irish be with you!
2. If you want praise, die. If you want blame, marry.
3. Here's to a long life and a merry one. A quick death and an easy one. A pretty girl and an honest one. A cold pint and another one!
4. If you’re enough lucky to be Irish... You’re lucky enough!
5. May you have the hindsight to know where you've been, the foresight to know where you are going, and the insight to know when you have gone too far.
6. A man may live after losing his life but not after losing his honour.
7. "All the world's a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed." - Sean O'Casey
8. You've got to do your own growing, no matter how tall your father was.
9. It is often that a person's mouth broke his nose.
10. It is better to spend money like there's no tomorrow than to spend tonight like there's no money!
11. May you always have a clean shirt, a clear conscience, and enough coins in your pocket to buy a pint!
12. May neighbours respect you, trouble neglect you, the angels protect you, and Heaven accept you.
13. It's easy to halve the potato where there's love.
14. "Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go." -Oscar Wilde
15. Here's to me, and here's to you. And here's to love and laughter. I'll be true as long as you. And not one moment after.
16. May you live to be 100 years, with one extra year to repent.
17. "There is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary." -Brendan Behan
18. May you die in bed at 95, shot by a jealous spouse.
19. Here's to women's kisses, and to whiskey, amber clear. Not as sweet as a woman's kiss, but a darn sight more sincere!
20. There are only two kinds of people in the world, the Irish and those who wish they were.
21. Where the tongue slips, it speaks the truth.
22. May your thoughts be as glad as the shamrocks. May your heart be as light as a song. May each day bring you bright, happy hours that stay with you all the year long.
23. A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures.
24. May the roof above you never fall in, and those gathered beneath it never fall out.
25. If it's drowning you’re after, don’t torment yourself with shallow water.
26. May misfortune follow you the rest of your life, and never catch up.
27. Lose an hour in the morning and you'll be looking for it all day.
28. Honey is sweet, but don’t lick it off a briar.
29. The older the fiddle the sweeter the tune.
30. Better be sparing at first than at last.
31. If you buy what you don’t need you might have to sell what you do.
32. Better good manners than good looks.
33. It is more difficult to maintain honour than to become prosperous.
34. Forgetting a debt doesn’t mean it’s paid.
35. Better the trouble that follows death than the trouble that follows shame.
36. If you come up in this world be sure not to go down in the next.
37. Lie down with dogs and you’ll rise with fleas.
38. You’ll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind.
39. Pity him who makes an opinion a certainty.
40. "A life making mistakes is not only more honourable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing at all." - George Bernard Shaw
41. Seeing is believing, but feeling is the God’s own truth.
42. You must take the little potato with the big potato.
43. May you be poor in misfortune, rich in blessings, slow to make enemies and quick to make friends. And may you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.
44. May your home always be too small to hold all your friends.
45. May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live.
46. May your heart be light and happy, may your smile be big and wide, and may your pockets always have a coin or two inside!
47. "There is only one thing worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about." - Oscar Wilde
48. Who keeps his tongue keeps his friends.
49. May you have food and raiment, a soft pillow for your head. May you be forty years in heaven before the devil knows you’re dead.
50. May you get all your wishes but one, so that you will always have something to strive for!
Happy Saint Patrick Day!
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