EXAMPLES WITH MAPS


Examples (languages that joined the project recently, e.g. Gaelic, Venetian, Mirandese, Armenian and Kazakh, are not represented here)

Example 1: to swim against the tide/stream

“to have opinions or ideas that are opposite to most people´s at the time; to go against public opinion”

The idiom to swim against the tide/stream matches the working definition of “widespread idioms”, see aim of the project; it is spread across various languages, including genetically unrelated and geographically distant languages. The idiom goes back to a verse of the Bible (Sirah 4,31); it is also quoted by Ovid: stultus pugnat in adversas ire natator aquas, Erasmus: contra torrentem niti and Luther: Und strebe nicht wider den Strom. The idiom is No. 109 of Pieter Bruegel the Elder´s painting “The Netherlandish Proverbs” (1559).

Equivalents of the idiom exist in those languages whose abbreviations are given on a coloured background. It is represented in Indo-European languages, Finno-Ugric languages and Turkic languages as well as in Maltese (a Semitic language), Georgian (a Caucasian language) and in Basque, an isolated language.

Abbreviations on a white background mean: The language is represented in the project but the idiom has not been proved to exist.

The idiom equivalents of the individual languages:

A. Languages of Europe:

I. Indo-European languages in Europe

[+]
1. Germanic

Icelandic   að synda/berjast/... móti straumnum “to swim/fight/... against the stream”
Faroese   simja móti/ganga ímóti streyminum “to swim/go against the stream”
Norwegian   gå mot strømmen “to go against the stream”
Swedish   gå mot strømmen “to go against the stream”
Danish   gå mod strømmen “to go against the stream”
English   to swim against the tide/stream
Scots   tae suim agin the tide “to swim against the tide”
Dutch   tegen de stroom (in) zwemmen “to swim against the stream”
North Frisian   töögen di Stroom swum “to swim against the stream”
West Frisian   tsjin de stream op roeie/ tsjin de stream yn wolle “to row against the tide/ want (to go) against the stream”
German   gegen den Strom schwimmen “to swim against the stream”
Luxembourgish   géint de Stroum schwammen “to swim against the stream”
Yiddish   גײן / שװימען קעגן שטראָם / שטראָם-אַרױף
(geyn/shvimen kegn shtrom/shtrom-aroyf) “to go/swim against the stream/ upstream”


Individual German dialects:

Low German (Schleswig Holstein)   gegen dat Water answümmen
Moselle Franconian (Lorraine)   gént de Stroum schwammen
Alemannic (Alsace)   gége de Strom schwimme
Highest Alemannic (Walser dialect)   goa gegen dem loufene Wasser
Swiss German   gegene Strom schwümme


[+]
2. Celtic

Irish   dul in aghaidh an tsrutha “to go against the stream/ current” [snámh in aghaidh (an) easa “to swim against a waterfall”]
Cornish   (no equivalent)
Welsh   mynd yn erbyn y llif “to go against the flow”
nofio yn erbyn y llif “to swim against the current”
Breton   mont a-enep/a-benn da’n dour/da’r red-dour “to go against/ toward the stream of the water”

Data for Scottish-Gaelic are missing.

[+]
3. Romance

French   nager/ aller contre le courant/ à contre-courant “to swim/go against the stream/ upstream”
Provençal   (no equivalent)
Occitan (Torino)   (no equivalent)
Francoprovençal (Aosta Valley)   (no equivalent)
Italian   andare/ remare/ nuotare contro corrente “to go/ row/ swim against the stream”
Sardinian   (no equivalent)
Ladin   (no equivalent)
Rhaeto-Romanic   (no equivalent)
Spanish   nadar/ ir/ navegar contra corriente/ a contracorriente “to swim/ go/ sail against the stream”
Catalan   nedar a contracorren / nedar contra la corrent “to swim upstream/ to swim against the stream”
Galician   nadar/ ir contra corrente “to swim/ go against the stream”
Portuguese   ir contra a corrente/ “to go against the current”/ remar contra a maré “to row against the tide”
Romanian   a înota împotriva curentului “to swim against the stream”
Aromanian/Vlach   s-ljea cu vintul/ s-acatsã cu vintul “to go/ swim against the stream”


Data for Friulian, Corsican and other Romance varieties are missing.

[+]
4. Baltic

Latvian   peldēt pret straumi “to swim against the stream”
Lithuanian   prieš srovę plaukti “to swim against the stream”


[+]
5. Slavonic

Russian   плыть против течения “to swim against the stream”
Belorussian   плысцi/плыць супраць цячэння “to swim against the stream”
Ukrainian   пливти проти течії “to swim against the stream”
Czech   plavat/ jít proti proudu “to swim/ go against the stream”
Slovakian   plávať proti prúdu “to swim against the stream”
Polish   iść/ jechać/ płynąć/... pod prąd “to go/ swim/...against the stream”
Kashubian   płënąc pòd żoch/ wòdã “to swim against the stream/ water” (polonism)
Upper Sorbian   přećiwo prudej/ wodźe płuwać “to swim against the stream/ water”
Slovene   plavati proti toku “to swim against the stream”
Croatian   plivati protiv struje “to swim against the stream”
Bosnian   plivati protiv struje/ uzvodno “to swim against the stream/ upstream”
Macedonian   (no equivalent)
Serbian   plivati protiv struje “to swim against the stream”
Bulgarian   плувам срещу течението “to swim against the stream”


[+]
6. Albanian

Albanian   të ecësh kundër rrymës “to walk against the stream” [të shkosh kundër turmës “to go against the crowd”]


[+]
7. Greek

Greek   πάω κόντρα/αντίθετα προς το ρεύμα “to walk against/contrary to the stream”



II. Finno-Ugric languages in Europe

[+]
1. Ugric languages

Hungarian   árral szemben úszik “sb. swims against the stream”


Data for Mansi are missing.
[+]
2. North-Finnic languages

Finnish   kulkea/ uida vastavirtaan “to walk/ swim upstream”
Karelian   uija vaste virdoa “to swim against the stream”
Estonian   vastuvett/ vastuvoolu minema/ ujuma “to go/ swim against the tide”
Vepsian   vastvedele ujuta “to swim against the tide”


Data for other North-Finnic languages (Ludic) are missing.

[+]
3. Permic languages

Udmurt   (no equivalent)
Komi-Zyrian   ва паныд катны [va panyd katny] “to swim against the stream”


Data for other Permic languages are missing.

[+]
4. Volgaic languages

Mari   йогын ваштареш ияш [ jogən vaštaгэš ijaš ] “to swim upstream”
Moksha Mordvin   вяри ветть уемс/ киньге каршек молемс “to swim/ go against the tide”
Erzya Mordvin   (no equivalent)
[+]
5. Saami languages

Inari Saami   (no equivalent)


Data for other Uralic languages in Europe (Tundra Nenets) are missing.

III. Turkic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Turkic languages

Karaim   (no equivalent)
Turkish   akıntıya kürek çekmek / akıntıya karşı kürek çekmek “to row against the stream”
Tatar   агымга каршы йозу “to swim against the stream”
Azerbaijani   axına qarşı üzmək [achina garschi üsmek] “to swim against the stream”


Data for Crimean Tatar, Gagauz and other Turkic languages in Europe are missing.
Data for other Altaic languages in Europe (Kalmyk) are missing.

IV. (Autochthonous) Caucasian languages

[+]
1. Caucasian languages

Georgian   dinebis satsinaagmdegod tsurwa “to swim against the stream”


Data for other Kartvelian languages as well as for the other Caucasian languages (Abkhazo-Adyghian and Nakh-Daghestanian languages) are not available.

V. Semitic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Semitic languages

Maltese   jgħum kontra l-kurrent “to go against the stream”


Data for other Semitic languages in Europe (Cypriot Arabic, New-Assyrian) are not available.

VI. Basque

[+]
1. Basque

Basque   ur lasterraren kontra igeri egin “to swim against rapid waters”




B. Non-European languages:


[+]
1. Non-European languages

Chinese   nìliú er shàng “against the current and upwards”
Japanese   jiryu ni sakaratte oyogu “to swim against the stream of the time (the prevailing trend)”
Korean   sorui-reul geoseureu-da “to swim against the tide (currant)”
Mongolian   урсгал сөрж сэлэх (ursgal surj seleh) “to swim against the currant”
Persian   bar-aleieh jarian shena kardan “to swim against the currant”
Vietnamese   e:tiki eduri:dinatlu “like swimming against the stream”
Telugu   bói ngúóc dòng “to swim against the stream”
Aklanon (Philippines)   nag-eangoy kuntra sa sueog “to swim against the stream”




C. Esperanto


[+]
1. Esperanto

Esperanto   naghi kontraù la fluo “to swim against the stream”




Example 2: to add fuel to the flames

‘to aggravate someone’s rage, to make someone still angrier’

The idiom to add fuel to the flames also matches the definition of “widespread idioms”; it is spread across various languages in Europe and beyond. It has been mentioned already by Horaz: oleum addere camino (Liber 2, Satira 3, V.321).




A. Languages of Europe:

I. Indoeuropean languages in Europe

[+]
1. Germanic

Icelandic   að hella olíu á eldinn “to pour oil on the fire”
Faroese   stoyta bensin á bálið “to pour petrol on the bonfire”
Norwegian   (Bokmål) helle bensin på bålet “to pour petrol on the bonfire”
(Nynorsk) slå olje på elden “to cast oil on the fire”
Swedish   gjuta olja på elden “to pour oil on the fire”
Danish   hælde/komme benzin på bålet “to pour petrol on bonfire”
English   to add fuel to the flame(s)/ to the fire
Scots   tae pit ile on the fire “to pour oil on the fire”
Dutch   olie op/in het vuur gooien/gieten “to cast/pour oil on/into the fire”
North Frisian   (Wiedingharde) ööle ääw’t iilj giitje “to pour oil on the fire”
West Frisian   dat is oalje/pik yn it fjoer “that is oil/pitch into the fire”
German   Öl ins Feuer gießen “to pour oil into the fire”
Luxembourgish   Ueleg an d’Feier schëdden “to pour oil on the fire”
Yiddish   tsuleygn holts tsum fayer “to add wood to the fire“
gisn boyml oyfn fayer “to pour oil onto fire”


Individual German dialects:

Low German (Schleswig Holstein)   Öl int/in dat Füür geten “to pour oil in the fire”
Moselle Franconian (Lorraine)   Ueleg op (d’) Feier schëdden “to pour oil on (the) fire”
Alemannic (Alsace)   Oel uffs Fier warfe “to cast oil onto the fire”
El ins Fier schitte “to pour oil into the fire”
Highest Alemannic (Walser dialect)   (no equivalent)
Swiss German   Swiss German Öl is Füür giesse “to pour oil into the fire”


[+]
2. Celtic

Irish   (no equivalent)
Welsh   rhoi mawn ar y tân “to put peat onto the fire”
rhoi olew ar y tân “to put oil on the flames”
Cornish   (no equivalent)
Breton   taoler eoul war an tan “to cast oil on fire”
lakat/skuilhañ eoul war an tan/war ar flammo ù “to put/pour oil onto the fire/flames”


Data for Scottish-Gaelic are missing.
[+]
3. Romance

French   jeter/mettre/verser de l’huile sur le feu “to cast/put/turn oil onto the fire”
Provençal   mette de l’huile sur le feuc “to cast/put/turn oil onto the fire”
Occitan (Torino)   (no equivalent)
Rhaeto-Romanic   metter strom en il fieu “to put straw into the fire”
Ladin   (no equivalent)
Francoprovençal (Aosta Valley)   chincà dè gas sou foûec “to put gas/petrol onto fire”
Italian   gettare/versare olio/benzina sul fuoco “to cast/turn oil/petrol onto the fire”
Corsican   (no equivalent)
Sardinian   gettai ollu a su fogu “to cast oil onto the fire”
Spanish   echar (más)/echarle leña al fuego “to throw (more) wood on the fire”
Catalan   tirar/afegir llenya al foc “to turn/put fire wood on the fire”
llençar/tirar més llenya al foc “to cast/turn more fire wood on the fire”
Galician   botarlle (máis) leña/aceite ao lume “to cast (more) wood/oil on the fire”
Portuguese   pôr mais achas na fogueira “to put more sticks onto the bonfire”
Romanian   a pune paie pe foc “to put straw on (the) fire”
Aromanian   arucã bizir pi foc “to put straw on (the) fire”


Data for Friulian, Corsican and other Romance varieties are missing.
[+]
4. Baltic

Latvian   liet ellu uguni “to pour oil into fire”
Lithuanian   žibala/ aliejaus pilti i ugni “to pour oil into fire”


[+]
5. Slavonic

Russian   подлить масла в огонь “to pour oil into fire”
Belorussian   падлiць масла/алею у агонь “to pour oil into fire”
Ukrainian   підливати масла у вогонь “to pour oil into fire”
Slovakian   liat olej na ohen/prilievat olej do ohna “to pour oil into fire”
Czech   prilévat oleje do ohne “to pour oil into fire”
Polish   dolewac/dolac oliwy do ognia “to pour oil into fire”
Kashubian   dokladac drewk do ògnia “to put (some more) wood to the fire”
dolewac òliwã do ògnia “to put oil to the fire” (polonismus)
Upper Sorbian   wolij do wohnja lec/priliwac “to pour oil into fire”
Slovene   prilivati/dolivati/priliti/doliti olje/olja na ogenj “to pour oil into fire”
Croatian   dolijevati/liti ulje na vatru “to pour oil into fire”
Bosnian   dolijevati ulje na vatruv “to pour oil into fire”
Serbian   sipati/dolivati ulje na vatru “to pour oil into fire”
Macedonian   dotura maslo vo ogan “to pour oil into fire”
Bulgarian   наливам масло в огъня “to pour oil into fire”


[+]
6. Albanian

Albanian   (Geg) hedh barut ne zjarr “to cast keg powder into the fire”
(Tosk) t’i hedhësh benzinë zjarrit “to cast petrol into the fire”
i hedh benzine zjarrit “to pour petrol into the fire”


[+]
7. Greek

Greek   ρίχνω λάδι στη φωτιά “to cast oil into fire”


Data for other Indo-European languages in Europe (e.g. Armenian, Ossetic) are not available.


II. Finno-Ugric languages in Europe


[+]
1. Ugric languages

Hungarian   olajat önt a tuzre “sb. pours oil into fire”


Data for Mansi are missing.
[+]
2. North-Finnic languages

Finnish   kaataa/valaa öljyä tuleen “to pour/shed oil into fire”
Estonian   õli tulle valama “to pour oil onto fire”
Karelian   (no equivalent)
Vepsian   (no equivalent)


Data for and other North-Finnic languages are missing.
[+]
3. Permic languages

Udmurt   тыл по:лы во:й кисьтыны “to pour oil into fire”
Komi-Zyrian   (no equivalent)


Data for other Permic languages are missing.
[+]
4. Volgaic languages

Mari   (no equivalent)
Moksha Mordvin   (no equivalent)
Erzya Mordvin   (no equivalent)
[+]
5. Saami languages

Inari Saami   (no equivalent)


Data for other Uralic languages in Europe (Tundra Nenets) are missing.

III. Turkic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Turkic languages

Karaim   otcha jav kujma “to add oil to the fire”
Turkish   (no equivalent)
Tatar   утка/май керэчин сибу “to pour/add oil in the fire”
Azerbaijani   oda yağ tökmək [oda yag tökmek] “to pour oil into fire”


Data for Crimean Tatar, Gagauz and other Turkic languages in Europe are missing.
Data for other Altaic languages in Europe (Kalmyk) are missing.

IV. (Autochthonous) Caucasian languages

[+]
1. Caucasian languages

Georgian   tsetskhlze navtis daskhma “to pour kerosene to the fire”


Data for other Kartvelian languages as well as for the other Caucasian languages (Abkhazo-Adyghian and Nakh-Daghestanian languages) are not available.

V. Semitic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Semitic languages

Maltese   (no equivalent)


Data for other Semitic languages in Europe (Cypriot Arabic, New-Assyrian) are not available.


B. Non-European languages:


[+]
1. Non-European languages

Arabic   (no equivalent)
Farsi   roghan be atash rikhatan “to pour oil into the fire”
Telugu   agniki a:djyam po:sinatlu “like adding fuel to fire”
Korean   gireum-eul but-da “to pour oil”
Mongolian   гал дээр тос нэмэх [gal deer tos nemeh] “to pour oil into the fire”
Chinese   huǒ shàng jiāo yóu “to pour oil onto fire”
Vietnamese   đổ dầu vào lửa “to pour oil into the fire”
Japanese   hi ni abura wo sosogu “to pour oil into the fire”
Aklanon (Philippines)   gingatungan “added fuel”




C. Esperanto


[+]
1. Esperanto

Esperanto   vershi oleon sur fajron “to pour oil onto fire”




Example 3: to bury the hatchet

‘to end a feud with one’s enemy; to restore a relationship after a long quarrel, to make up with someone’

Idioms that can be traced back to well-known texts (such as the Bible, fables, legends, literature or film production) make up the largest part of WIs (see results). The domain of “Native Indian stories” as popularized by J. F. Cooper’s tales and Hollywood movies belong here as well. The idiom to bury the hatchet ‘to end a feud with one’s enemy’ matches the working definition of “widespread idioms”. This example can be supplemented by many further languages. The first recorded uses and the ways of borrowing should be explored by the individual philologies.

The idiom equivalents of the individual languages:

A. Languages of Europe:

I. Indo-European languages in Europe

[+]
1. Germanic

Icelandic   að grafa stríðsöxina “to bury the war-axe”
Faroese   (no equivalent)
Norwegian   grave ned stridsøksen “to bury (down) the battle-axe”
Swedish   gräva ner stridsyxan “to bury (down) the battle-axe”
Danish   begrave stridsøksen “to bury the battle-axe”
English   to bury the hatchet (AmE to bury the tomahawk)
Scots   tae suim agin the tide “to swim against the tide”
Dutch   de strijdbijl begraven “to bury the battle-hatchet”
North Frisian   (no equivalent)
West Frisian   de striidbile begrave/bedobje “to bury the battle-hatchet” (a loan translation from Dutch)
German   das Kriegsbeil vergraben “to bury the war-hatchet”
Luxembourgish   (no equivalent)
Yiddish   (no equivalent)


Individual German dialects:

Low German   (no equivalent)
Moselle Franconian (Lorraine)   d’Kricksbeilen begruewen “to bury the war-hatchet”
Alemannic (Alsace)   gége de Strom schwimme
Swiss German   s Chriegsbäil begrabe “to bury the war-hatchet”


[+]
2. Celtic

Irish   (no equivalent)
Cornish   (no equivalent)
Welsh   (no equivalent)
Breton   (no equivalent)
Scottish-Gaelic   (no equivalent)



[+]
3. Romance

French   enterrer la hache de guerre “to bury the hatchet of war”
Italian   seppellire l’ascia di guerra “to bury the axe of war”
Spanish   enterrar el hacha (de guerra) “to bury the hatchet (of war)”
Catalan   enterrar la destral de guerra “to bury the hatchet of war”
Galician   enterrar a machada de guerra “to bury the hatchet of war”
Portuguese   enterrar o machado da guerra “to bury the axe of war”
Romanian   a îngropa securea razboiului “to bury (the) axe/hatchet of war”
Aromanian/Vlach   li-ngruparã tãpoarili tu loc “to bury (the) hatchet of war”



[+]
4. Baltic

Latvian   aprakt kara cirvi “to bury (the) axe of war
Lithuanian   Lithuanian karo kirvi užkasti “to bury (the) axe of war”


[+]
5. Slavonic

Russian   зарыть топор войны “to bury the hatchet of war”
Belorussian   закапаць сакиру вайны “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Ukrainian   закопати сокиру війни “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Slovakian   zakopať vojnovú sekeru “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Czech   zakopat válečnou sekyru “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Polish   zakopać topór wojenny “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Slovene   zakopati bojno sekiro “to bury the axe/hatchet of war”
Croatian   zakopati ratnu sjekiru “to bury the hatchet of war”
Bosnian   zakopati (ratnu) sjekiru “to bury the hatchet (of war)”
Macedonian   ja zakopuva bojnata sekira “to bury the hatchet of war”
Serbian   zakopati ratnu sekiru “to bury the hatchet of war”
Bulgarian   заравям томахавката “to bury the tomahawk”


[+]
6. Albanian

Albanian   (no equivalent)


[+]
7. Greek

Greek   (no equivalent)



II. Finno-Ugric languages in Europe

[+]
1. Ugric languages

Hungarian   elássa/eltemeti a csatabárdot “sb. buries the battle-hatchet”


Data for Mansi are missing.
[+]
2. North-Finnic languages

Finnish   haudata sotakirveensä “to bury one’s war-hatchet”
Karelian   (no equivalent)
Estonian   sõjakirvest maha matma “to bury (down) the war-hatchet”
Vepsian   (no equivalent)


[+]
3. Permic languages

Udmurt   (no equivalent)
Komi-Zyrian   (no equivalent)


Data for other Permic languages are missing.

[+]
4. Volgaic languages

Mari   (no equivalent)
Moksha Mordvin   войнань узерть калмамс
Erzya Mordvin   (no equivalent)


[+]
5. Saami languages

Inari Saami   (no equivalent)



III. Turkic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Turkic languages

Karaim   uruš boltany astrama “the hatchet to hide”
Turkish   Turkish savaş baltasını gömmek “to bury (the) hatchet”
Tatar   (no equivalent)
Azerbaijani   (no equivalent)



IV. (Autochthonous) Caucasian languages

[+]
1. Caucasian languages

Georgian   (no equivalent)



V. Semitic languages in Europe

[+]
1. Semitic languages

Maltese   (no equivalent)



VI. Basque

[+]
1. Basque

Basque   (no equivalent)




B. Esperanto


[+]
1. Esperanto

Esperanto   enterigi la tomahokon “to bury the tomahawk”