I no Naka no Kawazu [Taikai o Shirazu]

[Japanese Idioms by Flashcards]


A frog in the well [doesn’t know the sea]

(a provincial, one who has never seen the world)

Used to advocate greater travel beyond the Japanese islands, it captures the Japanese sense of awareness of being like a frog in a well. Comfortable as the well may be, it is but a small part of the whole world. Japanese teachers often recite this proverb to encourage their students to progress beyond the circumstances into which they were born.

Sample text:
(Style: written/informal)

Ningen wa dare demo onaji basho ni nagaku sumu to, i no naka no kawazu ni naru. Dakara tokidoki jibun no sodatta kankyoo, jibun no sumi nareta sekai to chigau soto no ooking sekai ni mo, jibun jishin o oite miru koto ga taisetsu dearu.

人間は誰でも同じ場所に長く住むと、の中のかわずになる。だ から時々自分の育った環境かんきょう、自分の住み慣れた世界と違う外 の大きな世界にも、自分自身を置いてみることが大切である。

When a person remains in the same location for many years, he or she becomes a frog in the well. So it is important sometimes to place ourselves in the wide world outside of the environment where we grew up or the narrow world we have grown accustomed to.

Japanese Idioms

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