Proverb – Người Đẹp Vì Lụa, Lúa Tốt Vì Phân

Literal Translation: A person is beautiful because of the silk, a rice field is healthy because of manure
English Equivalent: Fine feathers make a fine bird.

To understand this proverb, we need to examine the value of silk. In the past, silk was considered a luxury product reserved exclusively for the wealthy. During the Tang Dynasty, the different colors of silk worn by the upper class signified social class. The proverb’s literal meaning then, is that a person’s beauty is due to the fine clothes they wear. The figurative meaning speaks to a broader notion of self-presentation. There are many sayings in Western culture that discuss false assumptions based on presentation; “Never judge a book by its cover” warns you against misconceptions based on appearances while “Fake it ‘til you make it” prompts you to forge self-confidence to mislead others while you gain expertise. This proverb is a variation of the “dress to impress” Western concept. “Lúa tốt vì phân” not only reiterates the first part of the proverb, but together they imply that beauty of any kind (in people or in plants) requires care and cultivation.

On the topic of beauty, Vietnam also has another well-known proverb, “Cái nết đánh chết cái đẹp,” which means “Bad conduct kills beauty.” Regardless of how beautiful you are on the outside, physical beauty cannot conceal a cruel nature. Goodness and inner beauty will make an average looking person appear beautiful, but bad conduct will make even the most stunning person appear unattractive. After all, physical beauty deteriorates, but a good heart prevails.

Other related English sayings are “A tailor makes a man” and “Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder”.

This content is also available in: Tiếng Việt

Discover

Bài Liên Quan

Chợ Gạo – An emotional musical space

Immerse in the lively musical space Despite the convenience in musical experience by the development of digital music...

Cherry Blossom Season

When cherry blossoms bloom, the Japanese like to picnic under the trees, take pictures and contemplate the flowers. This traditional activity...

A Beautiful Custom in Spring

"The first day is Father’s Tet, the second day is Mother’s Tet, the third day is Teacher’s Tet" is the idiom...

Meaningful Gifts For Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is the time for us to show our love, gratitude as well as care for our mothers. This year, it might be...

The Origin Of The Name Ha Noi

Dear Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Ngan,In the music video Hue – Sai Gon – Hanoi, you said that king Minh Mang changed...

Proverb – After The Storm Comes A Calm.

Sau cơn mưa trời lại sángLiteral Translation:  After the rain, the sun shines again.English Equivalent:  After The Storm Comes A Calm.Or: ...

Proposed program to give Canadian permanent residency to asylum seekers working in health care

The federal government is working on a special program that would grant Canadian permanent residency to asylum seekers who have worked in...

This content is also available in: Tiếng Việt