the kumara does not speak of its own sweetness

the kumara does not speak of its own sweetness
Maori proverb warning against self-praise (a kumara is a sweet potato).

2001 He Hinatore Ki Te Ao Maori A Glimpse into Maori World on http://www.justice.govt.nz Self-praising is an undesirable trait in traditional Maori society. It is synonymous with the expression ‘kaore te kumara e korero mo tona mangaroa—a kumara does not talk about its own sweetness’ ie, self-praise is no recommendation.

2003 speech in New Zealand Parliament 5 Mar. on http://www.hansard.parliament.govt.nz I tell Mr Cunliffe that there is an old saying in Maoridom: ‘The kumara never tells you how sweet it is.’.. f one is really so good, one does not need to tell the nation, the nation will tell one. But the nation is not saying that.

2004 weblog on [i]http://www.publicaddress.net 24 Dec. Now, Arihia would kick me if she knew I was writing this. Kaore te kumara e korero mo tona ake reka—it is not for the kumara to speak of its own sweetness, after all. So I thought I’d give you a few tasting notes. She’s a stellar person, a scholar and mentor without match.

2006 ‘What is Maori Patient-Centred Medicine for Pakeha GPs?’ on http://www.bpac.org.nz Oct. GPs that use their expertise for the good of others, show a sense of humility and are not arrogant about their position, gain particular respect. ‘The kumara does not speak of its own sweetness.’


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