يا ارض اشتدى ما عليكى قدى
Ya ard eshtaddi ma eleiki qaddi
Translation: O land, gather your strength, for you’ll have to carry me, and I am greater than all you have carried.
Meaning: Compare the length of the English translation with the brevity of the Arabic saying for an indication of the eloquence of the proverb, which is still in use. It is a two-part rhyming saying, the first part ending with “eshtaddi” and the second part ending with “qaddi”. Use this proverb in reference to someone who’s so full of themself that they expect others to bend over backwards to please them.
Source: Egyptian Proverbs, (Al-Ahram Center for Translation and Publishing, 1986) by Ahmed Taymour Pasha
Translated by: Nabil Shawkat