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40 Palauan Proverbs, Quotes & Sayings + Their Meanings

Palauan people use a lot of sayings and expressions in daily life which offer advice and even sometimes have hidden meanings.

Check out these Palauan proverbs and quotes below to gain some insight into Palauan beliefs and ways of thinking. 

Below I’ve listed common Palauan proverbs, inspiring Palauan sayings and famous Palauan quotes. 

Famous Palauan Proverbs & Palauan Sayings

Below I’ve listed the most famous Palauan proverbs as well as some common Palauan sayings. These are used often in day to day life.

  1. A ungil el merreder a ua chull el melemedem er a daob – A good leader, like rain, stills the ocean waves.

This Palauan proverb means that a good leader should be able to solve the problems of their people.

Palauan proverb which reads 'a good leader, like rain, stills the ocean waves'.
  1. A chimad el dodersii a chimal a chad el odersii – Put out your arm and a man’s hand will reach back.

This proverb teaches that people are always willing to help you if you ask for help.

  1. A isnged a di kmeed e diak dengetemii – Our nose is close to the mouth but cannot be licked.

This Palauan proverb teaches us not to be too sure of ourselves or too overconfident. 

  1. A mekngit el tekoi a dub, e a ungil el tekoi a ollak – Bad words are a curse, good words are a blessing.

This Palauan saying teaches us that saying good things will make us liked.

  1. A omkokl el sechou a medinges – The heron that rises early is filled.

This Palauan quote is similar to the English saying ‘the early bird catches the worm’. It means that you are more likely to succeed if you start early in the day.

  1. A reched a ioud – Fast is late.

This Palauan saying means that hasty work can lead to poor results and delays.

  1. A ukall a diak lebo ltitimel – An ukall tree won’t become a titimel tree.

This proverb teaches us that human nature will never change and children tend to show similar characteristics to their parents.

  1. Lak bo mua chad er a Ngerchemai el miltom er a uel el metom ra mlai – Don’t be like the man from Ngerchemai who lost both the turtle and the canoe.

This Palauan quote means that you shouldn’t be too selfish and shouldn’t bite off more than you can chew.

  1. Ng di ua dorael er a medal a oles – It’s as if we were walking on the blade of a knife.

This proverb is used to say that you are treading on dangerous ground. It’s similar to the English saying ‘skating on thin ice’.

Palauan proverb which reads 'it's as if we were walking on the blade of a knife'.
  1. Ng ko er a belochel, el mesengei otelochel e suebek – Like a pigeon seeing the danger, yet it flies from cover.

This Palauan proverb describes a person who constantly puts themselves in danger. 

  1. Ng cheiko e omekrael er a ta er a cheiko – A blind man leading another blind man.

This saying is used to describe a situation where a person who knows nothing is getting advice from another person who knows almost nothing.

  1. ​​Kekora rubak era Ngerchelong el omtab era bngel era eabed – You’re like the man from Ngerchelong who uses clouds to mark locations of his fishtraps.

This Palauan saying describes a person who relies too much on other unreliable people.

Beautiful Palauan Quotes & Palauan Proverbs 

Below I’ve listed a range of famous and inspirational Palauan quotes and well-known Palauan proverbs.

  1. Moutekangel e ng kmeda a meched – Shallow water is approaching.

This Palauan quote teaches us not to give up as better times are coming.

  1. Ienged el merreder – The leader is our cave.

This Palauan quote describes a good leader who protects his/her people.

  1. A bo de chebuul e a kediul oltoir – One is chased by beggars only when penniless.

This quote means that creditors rarely ask rich people to repay debts but when a person loses all their money, the creditors ask for it back.

  1. A mesei a delal a telid – The taro field is the mother of our life.

This Palauan quote is about taro which is the most important staple food in Palau. This quote describes taro as the mother of life, highlighting its importance.

Palauan quote which reads 'the taro field is the mother of our life'.
  1. Ke di lotkii chelechang e diak kom letkii a cherechar – You think only of today and not of the future.

This proverb is used to describe those who do not look forward to the future.

  1. Ng di sengsongd e mrecherchii a kauang – Even a small twig can bring a pot to boil.

This Paluan proverb teaches that great things can often come from small things.

  1. Ng mechubs a ikrel e mengerem emel – Healed on the outside, rotten inside.

This saying describes a situation that appears good on the outside but isn’t.

  1. Ng ko er a sechou el suebek e mekebekabes a ochil – Like the reef heron flying with its legs hanging down.

Just as a reef heron carelessly flys with its legs dangling down instead of tucking them in, this saying describes a person who has done a careless job or has left a task half done.

  1. Ng ko er a Eberdord el di ngii el melul er ngii er a ngau – Like the bug attracted to the lamp that burns itself.

This proverb describes a person that brings about their own downfall by disregarding danger and only seeking pleasure.

  1. Ngkora chebiei el Cheangel, el di ta e chutur a tal suk – Like the breadfruit of Kayangel, just one rotten piece will spoil the whole bunch.

This Palauan proverb means that one bad person can ruin the reputation of a whole group. 

  1. Ngkora omenga el Raus, el sosokod e dikeang – It’s like the way they eat in Ngeraus, as soon as they begin to enjoy the food, it’s gone.

This quote describes how once something becomes popular, it often becomes unavailable.

Best Palauan Idioms & Palauan Expressions

Below I’ve listed the most well-known Palauan idioms and expressions. Many of these have hidden meanings. 

  1. Ng ko er a teribsel a daob – Like the foam of the ocean.

This Palauan saying can be used to say that nothing was done or nothing was settled just like foam drifts in the ocean without settling anywhere. 

Palauan saying which reads 'like the foam of the ocean'.
  1. Bekiu a ngerel – Fierce with mouth.

This Palauan idiom is used to describe a person who refutes authority.

  1. Ke ko er a katuu el di kau el di melecholb er kau – You’re just like a cat washing yourself.

Palauan people use this saying when they have to do everything themselves because other people are neglecting their duties.

  1. Ke ko er a okared el di ngii el melul er ngii er a ngau – You’re like a stink bug that burns itself in the fire.

This saying can be used to tell someone that they keep getting involved in things that will hurt them.

  1. Ke ko er a otaor el di omtitechakl el diak a blil – You’re like a floating log without a resting place.

This Palauan saying means that a person has no fixed home.

  1. Lak moltoech er a todem – Don’t stick your fork in.

This idiom can be used to tell someone to mind their own business.

  1. Mengesakl a ulaol – The opening of the floor.

This Palauan idiom is used to describe a feud between two friends.

  1. Mesachel a oruikl – Looking in the food basket.

This saying is used to describe a person who lives off of other people and does no work for themselves.

  1. Ng ko er a chades er a Rebodel – He’s like the road in Ngerebodel.

The road in Ngerebodel doesn’t go anywhere so this expression describes a person who is working hard but isn’t getting anywhere.

  1. ​​Ng ko er a blsuus el telebudel – Puffed out like a puffer fish.

This Palauan saying can be used to describe a boastful person. 

Palauan saying which reads 'puffed out like a puffer fish'.
  1. Ng ko er a bukitang, el meduch el meldelodech a bedengel – Like the octopus, able to change the color of its body.

This idiom describes a person who is easily influenced by others.

  1. ​​Ng kekerei e sechal – Though small, but a man.

This Palauan idiom can be used to describe a person who is physically small but a strong worker.

  1. Ngingai budel – Taking skin.

This expression describes the act of giving a gift then asking for it back.

  1. ​​Ng tilobed a delbengek – My spirit took leave.

This idiom is used to say that you were extremely scared.

  1. Ng ko er a bermel a chelechelui – Like the rotting of chelechelui.

The chelechelui fish doesn’t rot for a long time so this expression describes an older person who works slowly but sees a task through until it is completed.

  1. Ng ua kukau el omertort a ditel e chemoes – Like taro, though the leaves are tall, still immature.

This Palauan idiom describes a person who is very immature and inexperienced who boasts and acts like they are experienced. 

  1. ​​Ngiradart – Mr one hundred.

This expression describes a person who exaggerates and talks too much.

Thanks for reading this post on the best Palauan quotes about life, famous Palauan sayings and fascinating Palauan proverbs.

These Palauan quotes & sayings give an interesting insight into the Palauan beliefs and language.

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