Literally: The crocodile lives in water but it breathes air
Literally: If you don’t get anything for your in-law, don’t steal from her (or him).
Literally: If you rush to take the king’s crown, nobody serves you
Literally: If you are greater than your friend, he hates you
Literally: Love does not miss its way home
Literally: All peppers (presumably on the same tree) do not ripe simultaneously
Literally: No matter how difficult a matter is, we do not cut it with a knife.
Perhaps, a better literal translation of this is: No matter how difficult a matter is, it is not with a knife that we cut it. In other words, we may cut it but definitely not with a knife. Presumably, we use a mouth or a tongue. This proverb reveals the preference among the Akans to settle matters in a community amicably in order to maintain harmony, rather than resorting to violence. This is no trivial observation. Indeed, this culture is so prized that it may be playing no small part in the perception that Ghanaians (more than 40% of who are Akans) love a lot of talk without action.
Literally: When he who does not know learns, he knows
Literally: The tsetsefly sits at the back of the tortoise in vain
Literally: It is the one who is missing who knows where he is hiding.
Probably, this means that the one who has gone missing may be hiding after all. If he is hiding, then it may be very hard to find him though if he has lost his way, someone may randomly bump into him somewhere.
This could mean that it is futile to search for a missing person if he is not actually missing but only hiding.
Literally: A royal plays with his blood.
This could mean a royal has the luxury or the power or the wherewithal to do what others cannot afford to do. Royals in Akan culture, much like other cultures, are pampered with privileges that others could only dream of.
Literally: The one who gave birth to a fool did not suffer as much as the one who raised him (the foolish child).
This means that producing children, a relatively easy task, is completely different from raising them, which is a much harder task.
Literally: It is the day that the frog dies that we will know its length.