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English has an idiom: "Slow and steady wins the race." It is used to describe situations where slow, steady progress towards a goal is better than a rushed attempt to achieve things all at once (and I believe it comes from the fable of The Tortoise and the Hare). Is there an equivalent idiom in Spanish?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Here goes a bunch:

"Vísteme despacio, que tengo prisa" (quote from Ferdinand VII)

Something like: Dress me slowly, for I am in a hurry.


"Las prisas son malas consejeras"

Something like: Hurries are bad advisers.


"Sin prisa pero sin pausa"

Slowly but steadily


"Quien va piano va lontano"

(this sounds pretty Italian-borrowed to me, but it means Who goes slowly goes/gets far)


"Poco a poco, hila la vieja el copo".

Little by little the old lady spins the woll yarn (related to spinning a yarn; more information in Wikipedia)


Probably the closest one to the idiom you mention is this one (also based on the Aesop fable):

"Conejo rapido no llega lejos. Tortuga llega segura."

The fast rabbit doesn't reach far. The turtle arrives safe. Although I must say that I have never heard this in Spain.

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3  
In Mexico is very common "Lento pero seguro" - "Slowly but surely". –  Sergio Romero May 8 '12 at 14:36
1  
That one is Italian, indeed. The original is piano, piano si va lontano. The one @SergioRomero mentions in his comment is also used in Spain, I've heard it quite a few times. –  Gorpik Nov 18 at 9:39
    
Quien va piano va lontano is Italian not Spanish. The majority of the others I have never heard them myself. Lento pero seguro is the best choice at least in Spain. –  Luis Antolin Nov 18 at 20:34
    
The one I heard was, "poco a poco se llega lejos". That's almost like one of the ones you posted. –  Walter Mitty Nov 18 at 21:13
    
I think that "sin prisa pero sin pausa" is in fact said inversely: "sin pausa pero sin prisa", but with exactly the same meaning. –  Roberto Nov 20 at 7:11

Lento pero seguro conveys a very similar meaning to Slow and steady wins the race. because it is used to express that slowness is a good thing and gets you to your targets.

Example:

- estas tardando mucho, ¿no?
- yo voy lento pero seguro

That is widely accepted and recognized (at least in Spain).

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