- A four-year-old kid, Olamilekan Iyanuoluwa Adebayo, can recite hundreds of Yoruba proverbs and translate them well
- Assisted by his father Adebayo Oladimeji who provides a cue, the boy's mastery of the language is always a wonder
- With a kind of confidence that is rare for someone his age, the boy churns out words of wisdom that instruct
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The story of a 4-year-old boy, Olamilekan Iyanuoluwa Adebayo, who recites over 200 Yoruba is quite astounding.
There is a popular saying that when words fail, proverbs come in handy to pass the message. No wonder proverbs are significant in determining how rich a cultural language is.
While the mastery of proverbs is most times associated with the aged in Yoruba land and those who may have used the language for a long time, Adebayo is an exception.
In an interview with the TVC News, the Ibadan resident is celebrated as the encyclopedia of proverbs.
Dressed in agbada and culturally-styled cap, the boy is a perfect representation of the culture he takes pride in.
During his interview with the media, Olamilekan recited a handful of proverbs. What really stands out about his skill is that he also translates whatever he must have said in the English language.
Among the wisdom-packed words he delivered were:
"That one curtsies for a dwarf does not mean one would no grow tall, it is just a sign of humility."
"To make wealth, you must be ready to face all the tribulations on the way."
It should, however, be noted that the boy is often prompted by his father who unlike the son has to rely on a piece of paper.
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Adebayo Oladehimeji, a degree holder in economics, explained how the birth of his son is significant, revealing he came exactly a year after their second stillbirth.
Another interesting thing about Olamilekan was that after his first words at three-months-old, a thing which greatly surprised his parents, he never uttered a word until he was more than two years old.
A theatre scholar, Ben Tomoloju, also spoke about how Olamilekan's mastery is a rare kind, adding that he cannot imagine how he is able to do all that he does.
Watch the video below:
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Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that some Nigerian-Americans of Yoruba heritage took up this challenge to learn their language at the University of Ibadan on an exchange programme basis.
According to one of the lecturers at the university, Oye Taiwo, the US government yearly sends students to the university centre to learn the language.
He said when the programme started nine years ago, the first set of Nigerian-Americans that came spent nine months. Others after them spent varied months, with the present spending just two months.
Joseph Omotayo writes for the human interest desk at Legit.ng. He graduated from Obafemi Awolowo University with a degree in Literature in English. He loves basketball and books. He tweets @omotayome.