Chinese proverbs are derived from literature, history, and well-known Chinese philosophers. Even though most of these Chinese proverbs date back to ancient times, they still have the same force — and you’ll find that they’re exactly what you needed all along. In contrast to the demise of proverbs in Western cultures, they are extensively employed in everyday conversation and encompass many sectors of life.

So, these are some of the best Chinese proverbs.

Best Chinese Proverbs

He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.

An inch of time is an inch of gold but you can’t buy that inch of time with an inch of gold.

A crisis is an opportunity riding the dangerous wind.

It’s better to be without a book than to believe a book entirely.

A little impatience will spoil great plans.

If you bow at all, bow low.

Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without one.

A smile will gain you ten more years of life.

A man who cannot tolerate small misfortunes can never accomplish great things.

A closed mind is like a closed book; just a block of wood.

Experience is a comb which nature gives us when we are bald.

Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.

Behave toward everyone as if receiving a guest.

A fall into a ditch makes you wiser.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song.

A book holds a house of gold.

Talk does not cook rice.

Habits are cobwebs at first; cables at last.

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today.

In a group of many words, there is bound to be a mistake somewhere in them.

Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Two good talkers are not worth one good listener.

Even a hare will bite when it is cornered.

A hundred no’s are less agonizing than one insincere yes.

Govern a family as you would cook a small fish – very gently.

Patience is a bitter plant, but its fruit is sweet.

Listening well is as powerful as talking well, and is also as essential to true conversation.

He who cheats the earth will be cheated by the earth.

One beam, no matter how big, cannot support an entire house on its own.

Better the cottage where one is merry than the palace where one weeps.

Distant water does not put out a nearby fire.

Only one who can swallow an insult is a man.

The more acquaintances you have, the less you know them.

He who thinks too much about every step he takes will always stay on one leg.

Genius can be recognized by its childish simplicity.

There are two kinds of perfect people: those who are dead, and those who have not been born yet.

All things change, and we change with them.

If you want to find out about the road ahead, then ask about it from those coming back.

Want a thing long enough and you don’t.

A clear conscience never fears midnight knocking.

Learning is a weightless treasure you can always carry easily.

Married couples tell each other a thousand things without speech.

Small men think they are small; great men never know they are great.

It is easy to open a store – the hard part is keeping it open.

To be totally at leisure for one day is to be immortal for one day.

Do everything at the right time, and one day will seem like three.

Solve one problem, and you keep a hundred others away.

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.

Before preparing to improve the world, first look around your own home three times.

Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.

Ripe fruit falls by itself – but it doesn’t fall in your mouth.

Teachers open the door. You enter by yourself.

It is not the knowing that is difficult, but the doing.

Do not want others to know what you have done? Better not have done it anyways.

A man without a smiling face must not open shop.

Men trip not on mountains they trip on molehills.

I was angered, for I had no shoes. Then I met a man who had no feet.

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

A wise man makes his own decisions, but an ignorant man mindlessly follows the crowd.

Do not believe that you will reach your destination without leaving the shore.

The people who talk the best are not the only ones who can tell you the most interesting things.

A clever person turns great troubles into little ones and little ones into none at all.

Guessing is cheap, but guessing wrong can be expensive.

If you want to avoid being cheated, ask for prices at three different stores.

The person who is his own master cannot tolerate another boss.

To know another is not to know the person’s face, but to know the person’s heart.

Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.

No matter how tall the mountain is, it cannot block the sun.

A bird can roost but on one branch, a mouse can drink not more than its fill from a river.