Swedish Proverbs

Enjoy dozens of witty and insightful Swedish proverbs and idioms that have been passed down from one generation to the next for hundreds of years!

  • Joy and sorrow are next door neighbors.
  • A hardworking man is better than a crowd of loafers.
  • A word that’s been said and a stone that’s been thrown cannot be taken back.
  • When the Devil grows old, he’ll become religious.
  • Love is like dew that falls on both nettles and lilies.
  • The bee has a sting—but honey too.
  • A good man will cope on his own.
  • Come and go a Swedish mile in my moccasins before you criticize who I am.
  • Don’t throw away an old bucket until you know the new one holds water.
  • A dear child has many names.
  • Empty barrels rattle the most.
  • Wisdom is in the head and not in the beard.
  • Love me when I least deserve it, because that’s when I really need it.
  • God gives every bird a worm, but He does not throw it into the nest.
  • Everything comes round.
  • Childhood memories last long.
  • If there’s room in your heart, there’ll be room for an ass.
  • What doesn’t kill, hardens.
  • Those who wish to sing always find a song.
  • Thin mosquitoes bite the worst.
  • Worry often gives a small thing a large shadow.
  • In spring, no one thinks of the snow that fell last year.
  • The best place to find a helping hand is at the end of your own arm.
  • When a blind man carries a lame man, both go forward.
  • Don’t cross the stream to find water.
  • Worrying never did anyone any good.
  • Don’t sell the pelt until you’ve killed the bear.
  • It’s an easy burden that another carries.
  • In a good book, the best is between the lines.
  • Fear less, hope more; eat less, chew more; whine less breathe more; talk less, say more; hate less, love more; and all good things are yours.
  • An hour lost is often a year lost.
  • Sweep first before your own door, before you sweep the doorsteps of your neighbors.
  • The loss on the swings is won back on the merry-go-round.
  • We praise in order to be praised in return.
  • Advice should be viewed from behind.
  • When God brings death, the Devil brings the heirs.
  • We notice the faults of others and easily forget our own.
  • One shouldn’t buy a pig in a sack.
  • Who does not want to work in the heat will have to starve in the cold.
  • Small wounds and poor friends should not be despised.
  • He who cannot keep silence cannot speak.
  • Even a small star shines in the darkness.
  • Luck never gives: it only lends.
  • One should go invited to a friend in good fortune, and uninvited in misfortune.
  • Friendship doubles our joy and divides our grief.
  • What breaks in a moment may take years to mend.
  • A hearty laugh lengthens your life.
  • Self-praise has a bad smell.
  • The faults of others are the best teachers.
  • Eyes that do not cry, do not see.

For thousands more proverbs and words of wisdom, collected from over 40 countries, check out Proverbs from Around the World!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.