When you decide to study in Lithuania, you will obviously spend some time to learn basic phrases such as “hello”, “my name is...” and “what?”. But it’s useful to learn some Lithuanian sayings - not only to understand the locals better, but to learn more about their way of thinking.
Like every language, Lithuanian is full of phrases that have special meanings and sayings that only native speakers can appreciate. As one of the oldest languages still spoken in the world, some of its expressions that can surely raise foreigners’ eyebrows, while others may sound familiar to English-speakers.
Enjoy this list of the funniest phrases which native-speaking Lithuanians use daily:
Literal translation: “Spoons served after lunch.”
Meaning: It’s too late to do something.
Literal translation: “Don’t say ‘whee’ before jumping over the pit.”
Meaning: Don’t celebrate the successful end of something, before all work is completed.
Literal translation: “There is no medicine that can cure stupidity.”
Meaning: You could argue that studying at university is a helpful remedy for a lack of wisdom... But this phrase is usually said when someone does something obviously silly.
Literal translation: “The pot is laughing that the kettle is black.”
Meaning: The English language equivalent is similar: “The pot calling the kettle black.” This saying is used to convey that the criticisms a person is aiming at someone else could equally well be applied to themselves.
Literal translation: “Looking through pink glasses.”
Meaning: This is usually said to or about a person who sees everything in a positive light.
Literal translation: “When the door closes, the window opens.”
Meaning: There is always another opportunity waiting around the corner.
Literal translation: “Sitting like they were just kissed.”
Meaning: Use this phrase to refer to a fellow student who is obviously lost in daydreams.
Literal translation: “Not all that glitters is gold.”
Meaning: Not everything actually is as (good as) it looks.
Literal translation: “Needed like a fifth leg on a dog.”
Meaning: Something is in the way, or just not needed at all.
Literal translation: “Walking like he sold the earth.”
Meaning: A person is or looks sad.
Based on the sport’s popularity, a common joke goes that, in Lithuania, there is only one religion: basketball! Hence we close with a fitting phrase:
Literal translation: “Throwing into God’s windows!”
Meaning: The aim is way off!
(Text provided by Study in Lithuania. Audio recordings provided by Ruta Naujokaite / Lithuanian Dream Podcast. This article contains images licensed under CC0 and sourced from Pixabay.)405 Programmes in Lithuania