Tadeusz Lewaszkiewicz, Reptiles and amphibians in Upper Sorbian stock phrases, similes and proverbs

I have described 22 examples of word combinations (15 stock phrases, 2 similes and 5 proverbs) noted in basic Upper Sorbian lexicographic works Names of reptiles and amphibians are used in Upper Sorbian stock phrases, similes and proverbs to illustrate various human vices and weaknesses, such as slyness, deceitfulness, dipsomania, sulking and scowling, manipulating others for one’s own ends, waiting for others to stumble, thoughtlessly parroting others. Some stock phrases, similes and proverbs point to the overabundance of something, signs of poverty and lack of success. I believe that only one stock phrase (wić so kaž had – to wriggle like a snake) has a close counterpart in Polish and Russian. Sedźeć kaž žaba na krjepjawie is a calque of the German phrase sitzen wie der Frosch auf der Gießkanne. It appears that Slavic languages are using the names of reptiles and amphibians in different ways to build a linguistic image of the world. From this point of view, there are generally no structural and linguistic similarities between Upper Sorbian and Polish (as well as between Upper Sorbian and German/Russian).