This project has received funding from the Research Council of Lithuania (LMTLT), agreement No [S-LIP-18-43].

The Publication "Lithuanian Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases" (LPP)

Vol. 1: A–D, edited by Kazys Grigas (editor-in-chief), Lilija Kudirkienė, Rasa Kašėtienė, Gediminas Radvilas, Dalia Zaikauskienė, Vilnius: Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore, 2000

Vol. 2: E–J, edited by Giedrė Bufienė, Kazys Grigas, Rasa Kašėtienė, Lilija Kudirkienė (editor-in-chief), Dalia Zaikauskienė, Vilnius: Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore, 2008

Vol. 3: K, edited by Vita Džekčioriūtė, Rasa Kašėtienė, Lilija Kudirkienė, Dalia Zaikauskienė, Vilnius: Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore, 2019.

 As it is written in the Foreword of “Lithuanian Proverbs and Proverbial Phrases”, “it is a comprehensive publication of Lithuanian proverbs and proverbial phrases where the main texts of folklore and additional data will be included” (LPP I, p. 7). It is based on data from the Card Index of proverbs and proverbial phrases of the Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore. The initial plan was to prepare a five-volume collection: 1st-4th volumes were intended to contain typological descriptions of proverbs and proverbial phrases, whereas the fifth volume was meant to give an index for presenters and collectors of texts, regional division of texts, maps, short biographies of the most famous presenters and collectors of texts, their photographs, facsimiles of better known publications and manuscripts. Only after the publication of the first volume and during the preparation of the second one it became clear what vast amounts of the material had been accumulated, thus the decision was made not to restrict the work to only five volumes.

The texts are classified according to the model of preparing national publications recommended by the International commission of paremiologists (1975). Variants of each proverb or proverbial phrase are arranged into types united by similar motifs – visual nucleus (for instance, in the proverb “Cold hands, warm heart”, the nucleus of the artistic vision is the opposition between the hands and the heart). The types are arranged according to the main word but here, differently from the Card Index, the attention is paid to the thematic-semantic aspect of the main word (for instance, “There’s no much of the white world” – in the LPP, the word ‘white’ is considered to be the main word, whereas in the Card Index this type is arranged according to the formal main word – the noun ‘world’).

In the LPP, proverbs and proverbial phrases are arranged together without attempt of distinguishing between the two. Popularity and tradition of use is relatively taken into consideration when selecting proverbs and proverbial phrases. The number of variants as a criterion of tradition is regarded the least while selecting the texts of the 18th – the first half of the 19th centuries, especially when the texts reflect past realia or contain some mythical imagery. Moreover, new individual sayings that bear significant features of form or content typical of proverbs and proverbial phrases are also included in the publication.

In order to encourage dissemination of Lithuanian proverbs, to make them easily accessible to foreign researchers, the headings of the types are translated into English, German and Russian. The most popular international types of proverbs are also accompanied by equivalents in Latvian, Polish, German, English, Latin and Russian.