Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos. (criar + cuervo)

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deltor

Senior Member
Spanish
What is the equivalent of the Spanish saying: "Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos"?

The meaning is this:

It means that if you are raising children, then it can happen sometimes that those children will give you the cold shoulder once they're grown up. In general, it means that favors made to ungrateful persons will always be time lost.

I hope I can convey the meaning accurately
 
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  • Fernando

    Senior Member
    Spain, Spanish
    I think it would be helpful if you explain the meaning for English-speakers.

    Alternate version:

    "Cría cuervos...y tendrás muchos"
     

    Selena1967

    Senior Member
    Spain, Spanish
    "Cria cuervos y te sacarán los ojos" means something similar to "if you are feeding a 'monster' he will end up eating you" or "if you let someone to be heartless with anyone else he will attack you anytime soon".

    I'm trying to find out if there is an American or British idiom which has the same meaning.Can somebody help me? :)

    Thanks
     

    fobits

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    ¡Buena pregunta! Constituye un verdad tan básico que debería ser algún refrán que incorpora la misma lección.

    El más parecido que me occure sería:

    If you play with with fire, you'll get burned.

    ¿Hay otras sugestiones?
     

    Soy Yo

    Senior Member
    USA
    EEUU - inglés
    Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos.

    Raise crows and they'll peck your eyes out. (It's kind of like those damn birds bite the hand that feeds them. But the idea is that you can't trust untrustworthy people/things/animals.)
     

    David

    Banned
    Traducción literal:

    Raise crows and they´ll tear your eyes out.

    No me ocurre ningún equivalente en inglés. Tal vez: don´t bite the hand that feeds you: no muerdas la mano que te da de comer...
     

    fazulas

    Senior Member
    Galician
    En mi opinión, "If you lie down with dogs, you'll wake up with fleas" seria en español "el que con niños se acuesta, meado se levanta", no "cria cuervos...". Esta última expresión tiene más peso.

    Literalmente, en inglés sería: "Breed crows and they will gouge your eyes out". No se me ocurre cuál es el mejor dicho inglés... En todo caso, tampoco son las propuestas de aurilla.

    Ni "Those who live by the sword die by the sword", que es "quien a hierro mata, a hierro muere".
     

    Crugama

    New Member
    Nicaraguan Spaninsh
    Hola a todos(as)!!!

    Hace poco días escuche este popular refrán. ¿Podrían decirme cuál sería el equivalente de éste en Inglés?

    "Cria cuervos y te sacarán los ojos."

    Gracias de antemano!
     

    nv1962

    Senior Member
    If you're referring to the traditional meaning, i.e. raising kids "wrong" and inevitably getting to suffer the consequences, you could say: "you get the children you deserve".

    In a more broad sense, e.g. a sport team coach being lax on discipline, I can't come up with an existing equivalent. Perhaps another might fulfill that purpose: "you reap what you sow."
     

    javier8907

    Senior Member
    Spanish - Spain
    No, the meaning is -as I understand it- "No good deed will go unpunished." -at last, aurilla. Of course it can be applied to children, but also to any kind of relationship where someone does a lot of good and gets evil in return. I think it's about ingratitude rather than anything else.

    When it actually refers to children it doesn't mean that lack of discipline makes spoilt children, but it applies to children who turn their backs on their parents when they're grown up.
     
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    javier8907

    Senior Member
    Spanish - Spain
    Many of the suggested translations have in fact much closer Spanish equivalents. For example, "You reap what you sow" exists as "Se recoge lo que se siembra", "Don't bite the hand that feeds you." is "No muerdas la mano que te da de comer." (absolutely literal), and "If you play with fire, you'll get burned." has a counterpart in Spanish too: "El que juega con fuego, se acaba quemando.".
     

    Berrocal98

    Senior Member
    Spain, Spanish, Catalan
    Any idea for the translation? Does it exist any idiom with the same meaning?
    Thanks!!

    This idiom is used for pointing the ingratitude of people who, owning you a favour, act against you instead of doing something good for you.
    (I'm not sure whether I've been enough clear)
     

    Alf-Med

    Senior Member
    Spanish-Spain
    Spanish meaning is that you feel betrayed by someone.

    If you help many times somebody and once you ask him for help he refuse to help you, then you would say: "cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos"
     

    Dlyons

    Senior Member
    English - Ireland
    Spanish meaning is that you feel betrayed by someone.

    If you help many times somebody and once you ask him for help he refuse to help you, then you would say: "cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos"
    Obviously, a native Spanish speaker would know better but I read this slightly differently.

    My take is that something does not change its nature ("a leopard does not change his spots"), so if you encourage something dangerous/bad you should expect a bad outcome.
     

    Berrocal98

    Senior Member
    Spain, Spanish, Catalan
    As I see, the two points of view are complementaries. The person who refuses to help you may act in this negative way because of his bad nature. In other words, the bad nature will lead to a negative attitude (even if you have help him/her several times before)
    What do you think?
     

    Masood

    Senior Member
    British English
    Lo que me viene a la mente es la frase hecha inglesa: To bite the hand that feeds you.

    Se usa cuando te comportes mal hacia otra persona que está ayudándote o te ha ayudado en el pasado.

    Espera a ver qué opinan los demás.
     

    verence

    Senior Member
    Spain (Spanish)
    As I see, the two points of view are complementaries. The person who refuses to help you may act in this negative way because of his bad nature. In other words, the bad nature will lead to a negative attitude (even if you have help him/her several times before)
    What do you think?
    I agree with you.
     

    Mirlo

    Senior Member
    Castellano, Panamá/ English-USA
    Solo para información: en Panamá se usa más con este sentido:

    Que los padres crían a los hijos de una manera negativa y después estos cuando crecen le hacen las mismas cosas o peores, los tratan mal a los padres cuando llegan a viejos les grita, los maltratan, etc.
    A eso se debe el dicho de cría cuervos y te sacaran los ojos.
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Solo para información: en Panamá se usa más con este sentido:

    Que los padres crían a los hijos de una manera negativa y después estos cuando crecen le hacen las mismas cosas o peores, los tratan mal a los padres cuando llegan a viejos les grita, los maltratan, etc.
    A eso se debe el dicho de cría cuervos y te sacaran los ojos.
    That sounds like "You reap what you sow."
     

    Alf-Med

    Senior Member
    Spanish-Spain
    Lo que me viene a la mente es la frase hecha inglesa: To bite the hand that feeds you.

    Se usa cuando te comportes mal hacia otra persona que está ayudándote o te ha ayudado en el pasado.

    Espera a ver qué opinan los demás.
    If Spanish we have "morder la mano que te alimenta", but this means to do something against someone you need for your survival or your incoming.

    "cría cuervos..." is something you say when you help (or feed, or teach, or mentor, or trust) somebody and afterwards he is not behaving as expected. Then you realize about his real personality.
     

    ARR

    Senior Member
    El "Diccionario de Refranes" de Espasa Calpe dice sobre la expresión Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos:

    Explica que los beneficios hechos a ingratos ler sirven de armas para pagar el bien con el mal.

    Está documentado su uso por el Marqués de Santillana en su Refranes que dicen las viejas tras el fuego (1454).

    ¡Es que me encanta lo del origen de los refranes!

    Saludos
    ARR
     

    Masood

    Senior Member
    British English
    If Spanish we have "morder la mano que te alimenta", but this means to do something against someone you need for your survival or your incoming.

    "cría cuervos..." is something you say when you help (or feed, or teach, or mentor, or trust) somebody and afterwards he is not behaving as expected. Then you realize about his real personality.
    There's another saying which might fit: You can't teach an old dog new tricks.
     

    Dlyons

    Senior Member
    English - Ireland
    El "Diccionario de Refranes" de Espasa Calpe dice sobre la expresión Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos:

    Explica que los beneficios hechos a ingratos ler sirven de armas para pagar el bien con el mal.

    Está documentado su uso por el Marqués de Santillana en su Refranes que dicen las viejas tras el fuego (1454).

    ¡Es que me encanta lo del origen de los refranes!

    Saludos
    ARR
    Then "to bite the hand that feeds you" seems the nearest equivalent.
     

    Neboah

    Member
    Spain - Galician & Spanish
    El "Diccionario de Refranes" de Espasa Calpe dice sobre la expresión Cría cuervos y te sacarán los ojos:

    Explica que los beneficios hechos a ingratos les sirven de armas para pagar el bien con el mal.

    Está documentado su uso por el Marqués de Santillana en su Refranes que dicen las viejas tras el fuego (1454).

    ¡Es que me encanta lo del origen de los refranes!

    Saludos
    ARR
    "No good deed goes unpunished"????
     

    DelaChón

    Senior Member
    Aragonese Spanish
    Reverso online (by Collins) provides the following translation:

    Mind that you don't lavish your gifts upon the ungrateful.

    Do native speakers use it any often? It is a very popular proverb in Spanish!

    Cheers!
     

    fenixpollo

    moderator
    American English
    Mind that you don't lavish your gifts upon the ungrateful.
    Collins' translation is slightly different than the meanings given earlier in this thread for "cría cuervos".
    Do native speakers use it any often? It is a very popular proverb in Spanish!
    An expression that is similar to the Collins version, and more common, is about throwing pearls before swine. It's a literary quote, and I don't hear it often in everyday speech, but it's a proverb -- unlike the phrase about lavishing gifts on the ungrateful, which I have never heard before.
     

    Gabriel

    Senior Member
    Argentina / Español
    I don't think that this saying is about (lack of) gratitude, as many Spanish speakers said in this thread.
    I think, or at least I use it, to describe for example that if you "train" someone to be evil, he might eventually come after you.

    If you grow and train a dog to be aggressive, it might eventually bite you.
    If you ask your subordinates to lie to others, hide things under the carpet, etc. they will eventually do exactly that to you.
    If you, actively or by omission, grow/let your children to be rude, bad-mannered and insolent, don't expect a lot of compassion and support from them at a later time.

    It is more or less in the line of "cosecharás tu siembra", but always with the negative connotation.
     

    Gabriel

    Senior Member
    Argentina / Español
    ^^^^^^ Yes, that's what I think.
    Is that a usual saying or just a sentence that coveys the meaning?
    And shouldn't it be "I've created a monster..."
     

    Sunshine on Leith

    Senior Member
    Spain's Spanish
    It could be too, then you would need to change it to 'and it has come back to bite me'.

    The problem is that the original would technically need to be translated as: 'Create a monster and it will come back to bite you' but I don't think that works so well. Would this make sense to a native or is it a bit forced?
     

    ARR

    Senior Member
    A mí me parece que tu propuesta tiene más que ver con la persona desagradecida que con lo que decía Gabriel en su post, que es más el sentido de la expresión "cría cuervos..." Si alimentas algo/alguien malvado por naturaleza, no conseguirás nada; solo que en el futuro te devuelva mal por bien.

    A ver si algún nativo se acuerda de alguna expresión, que seguro que tiene que haberla.

    ¡Feliz Navidad!
     

    Gabriel

    Senior Member
    Argentina / Español
    Del diccionario de WR:

    criar [conjugation =>]
    VT
    [...]
    3 [+ ganado] to rear, raise [+ aves de corral] to breed; (para competición) to breed
    REFRÁN: cría cuervos (que te sacarán los ojos)
    qué mala suerte tuvo con sus hijos; ya sabes, cría cuervos ... she's been so unlucky with her children, after all she's done for them they've repaid her with nothing but ingratitude
    Quiero dejar asentado que no concuerdo con el ejemplo del refrán.
    Si "after all she's done for them", entonces está criando niños buenos, no cuervos.

    Cría a tus niños, educa a tus empleados, etc para que sean egoístas y traicioneros, y no esperes que sean buenos, leales y piadosos contigo.
     
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