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The bird raised in hell...

Posted by Brian from Shawnee on July 02, 2004

In Reply to: The bird raised in hell... posted by ESC on July 02, 2004

: : Hi,
: : I want to know the meaning of Welsh proverb, "Y cyw a fegir yn uffern, yn uffern y myn drigo."
: : It can be translated "The bird reared in hell, there he will choose to dwell."

: : Do this proverb have to do with the Welsh history?

: My opinions about the meaning:

: 1. We are more comfortable with the familiar, even if it's a miserable existence. Like a caged animal who feels safe in his cage and is afraid to leave.

: 2. Or it could mean a child raised around evil will choose evil when he growns up.

: I don't know anything about Welsh history.

The sentiment sounds akin to "Better the devil you know than the devil you don't know". In fact a search of this site on "devil you know" leads one to a discussion from the year 2000, in which ESC answers a question regarding a similar proverb translated from the Spanish. "The devil you know..." seems to be of Irish origin and traced back to the year 1539 according to a cited reference. So now we've got English, Irish, Spanish, and Welsh. Seems like a universal concept.