Language can range from ordinary to essentially allegorical levels of understanding. One example of a symbolic figure that raises language to a significant level is a proverb which can also be transcribed as a saying. The word proverb came from the Latin words ‘pro’ which means ‘forth’ and ‘verbum’ which means words. When put together, we can obtain the phrase ‘to put words forward’. To put forward signifies to raise language to another level more than it’s conventional use.

Proverbs make use of figurative connotations rather than the literal and are known for their hidden meanings that’s why they are deemed to be rooted in philosophical values. They also express deep sentiments and reflections about society and eventually about life as a whole. They are often employed for guidance and to inculcate a valuable set of perspectives. Another thing about proverbs is that they are traditional in nature. They often come in the form of religious verses and can also be treated as social symbols and are passed on from successive generations. Unlike any use of language, proverbs are considered cannons because of their associations with institutions like religions and schools of thought. They are contained in specific institutions and are interpreted with regard to their institutional affiliations.

Although proverbs provide valuable insights, their interpretations may vary depending on the individuals but we cannot also deny that most proverbs are viewed as predetermined entities. Their means and interpretations must conform to a certain to what social strata it belongs to. Either way, proverbs prove that language can delve deeper aside from its literal sense and arbitraries. They are also considered as a great part of cultural identity and heritage. Each culture around the world makes use of proverbs to spread their values and oftentimes in their belief systems. Whichever way it is proverbs play an essential role to provide signification towards life.

Nevertheless, proverbs may be treated in whatever way an individual chooses it to be, at the end of the day it is a matter of personal choice.

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Jessa Payofelin

I am 21 yrs. old and currently a third-year student at the University of the Philippines Visayas Miag-ao campus taking up a Bachelor of Arts in Literature. I am currently residing at Sinogbuhan San Joaquin, Iloilo. My hobbies include writing, reading, watching Korean drama, and listening to k-pop.