Africa animals proverbs

Igbo Proverb: On the Kite and Eagle

Igbo: Egbe bere, Ugo bere, nke si ibe ya ebele, nku gbajie ya

English: Let the Kite perch, let the Eagle perch, any that forbids the other from perching, let its wings break.

Origin: This proverb originated from the Igbo tribe of Nigeria. It’s commonly used when trying to settle disputes or for prayers.

Meaning: Kites and Eagles are strong birds of prey. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, even though the Eagle is much bigger and stronger than the Kite. Though both are carnivorous birds they don’t take on the same prey. While Eagles may hunt bigger creatures, the Kite take on smaller prey. They have different hunting and nesting grounds, skills and preys.

In Igboland, the concept of live and let live is the norm. Tradition requires everyone (a king or a peasant) to go about living life while allowing others to do the same. Our actions and lifestyle should not come in the way of other people. Consequently, manslaughter and social vices are forbidden in Igboland. Anyone who takes another’s life will pay with his.


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