Case study : Symbolism in selected Runyankole proverbs
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This study explores the symbolism contained in selected Runyankole proverbs. Proverbs are broadly defined as short, well-known pithy sayings, stating a general truth or piece of advice. Proverbs can also be defined as brief, simple and popular phrase. Scholars like Oliver Smith Storey (2004: 05) say that a proverb is “the wit of one and the wisdom of many”. Archer Taylor argues that formulating a scientific definition of a proverb is too difficult to do but the incommunicable quality tells us this sentence is proverbial and that one is not. In Ankole, there are many proverbs and these are used on a daily basis in different aspects. Long ago, the tradition was that these proverbs are to symbolize or represent some aspects and the audience was to learn from these proverbs in Ankole can be addressed to different audiences depending on the age bracket of the audience. In Ankole tradition, proverbs were told by elders because it was believed that these are old people and they have gained the wisdom to use them properly. They were always told to a mature audience both male and female because proverbs carry deeper message and thus young people would find it hard to interpret them.