ডিঠান or idiomatic usage of Sylheti Language – Part II

The second phase of documentation features some 200 odd syhlleti proverbs in original along with a tracework about the whole by one contributor. The team's main collection point was from a book by Mr. Sashi Mohan Choudhry, published in 1970 and probably now extant, from memory, from memories of others and some were written to us by our web-readers and a lot of them came from people talking over phone. Compilation of proverbs for any language is something like past and present for the language and language being eternally vigilant always retains the history of those who spoke and speak that. And while compiling we had something to think about selection and in some cases we are tempted to uncanny connections with other languages. But it is one way quite natural as the Bard has told long back - "One brush of Nature makes us all a kin." However, we apologise that in order to do the trade-off between loading time and image quality, we have discriminated towards loading with an assumption that a trained eye will add the places where imaging has faulted or erred

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[ With a single line the whole memory of Ramayana is brought and in parallel was told about the metaphysical connection of the bamboo at the backyard and the final journey to the pyre on the same bier, made up of of bamboo. It is still made in our places. And the direct reference to Kalidas who while in his moment of humour told that the thought of the stomach is the most wonderful of all and at times it eclipses everything. And so beautifully - "When all vagabonds and trifle serpents are crowding, the royal cobras enter their holes". Reminded W.B Yeats who while narrating a decadent and unholy time - "When the Best lacks all conviction / And the worst is full of passionate intensity" ]

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[ With three or four words, we were told of the horrible moral decay that will set in the time of Kali - a generic mythological age-term to denote corruption and decay. And we were told that in an increasingly nucleating family, the lady of the house is alltime good and pleased (not a very true conjecture !). And what a wonderful reference and cross-comparison of a ripening fruit and an aging man - "Ripened Mangoes are sweeter/ Aged men - bitter". And again the craftsman/women of those one-liners could occasionally beocme poetically symbol loving, with the help of a local imagery - "Mangoes grow in bunches and Tamarind grows twisted / Will the dear one of the land will be seen again while he out abroad". Capturing that centrifugal action of time which throws out brothers and sisters into four corners of the globe from the "bunch", they grew once - the family ]

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[ Honour and insult are time and space dependent. After that a very beautiful observation - Love flows downward. And then another mix of pure Sanskrit with spoken dialect - "At times, Thus Spake Jarathustra" And a nice mix of feudal word imposed on the animal world - A Fox overseering a herd of goat.]

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[Little Learning is always a good advise as a pre-marriage activity and the observation of the age of women - "Once arossed twenty - Oh you are already an old auntie". And the wordsmith of those verses suddenly discover a fundamental similarity between nature of Man and a dog's curved tail.

The proverbs are not only some kind of words stuck in the memory but more fertile is the very insvestigation of the fact that why they have remained in memory for so long and obviously had undergone modification and metamorphosis due to the factors which are political, social, religious, aesthetic, cultural and precisely those attributes that we instantly identify as human. Suddenly, in those simple words we identify that they have also undergone something, in spite of all differences - the ecstasy and the pain of being human.]