One bite at a time

Please help me translate this proverb/expression:
“How do you eat an elephant? - One bite at a time”.
I guess it starts with “Sama be dumun cogo di”…? (in Banfora)

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I ni ce, Irene!

How about:

– Sama bɛ dumu cogo di?
– Dɔɔnin-dɔɔnin!

Or for the second part:

– Daɲɛ/daɲa kelen-kelen fɛ

Keep me posted on what you hear from others or what they think of those options!

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Thanks Coleman,

Just heard two more options “bolokun kelen fɛ”
or “bolo nyan kelen”.

With “daɲɛ kelen kelen”, would it not say “word for word”? Or did you hear people use it otherwise?

Great to have this forum <3!

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“Daɲɛ” meaning ‘word’ is a technical neologism from the adult literacy education circles. It can also just mean ‘time; instance’ in the right context. It literally comes from “da-ɲɛ” (< ‘’).

The word boloɲa or boloɲɛ is a compound of the same kind; it comes from bolo-ɲɛ (lit. ‘arm-time’), so it sounds like a better fit if others like it :slight_smile:

And of course, bolokun is similar, but uses kun instead of ɲɛ. I think that you could translate boloɲɛ/boloɲa or bolokun as ‘handful’.

That’s what I was hoping would work with daɲɛ also – that would interpret it as ‘mouthful’.

I like the Forum too and I’m glad you use it! :slight_smile: