հոգի գնա, ոչ թե անունը
Transliteration: hogi gna, voch’ t’e anuny
Translation: The soul can rise, but the name stays.
Better to die than to have your image/name tarnished.
Background Information: Armenian proverb used by Armenians around the world.
Context: I was told this proverb by the informant when I was interviewing him about his culture. I was specifically interested in learning about Armenian proverbs because of the wide use of them in the Armenian culture.
Thoughts: I think that this proverb definitely provides a glimpse into the Armenian culture. It shows how paramount image can be in Armenian society. It would be better for your soul to leave your body than to have a bad reputation. I think it is interesting to note the matter of fact quality of this proverb. It lacks much use of figurative speech and is very straightforward about its motive/meaning.