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Thread: can't see the forest for the trees

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Prague
    Native language
    Hungarian
    Posts
    4,709

    can't see the forest for the trees

    Hello, do you use the same idiom in your language?
    We Hungarians use the literal translation.

    Nem látja a fától az erdőt.
    [ɒkinɛk humorɒ vɒn, mindɛnˤtud, ɒkinɛk niŋʧ, mindɛnrɛ ke.pɛʃ]

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Native language
    Greek
    Age
    45
    Posts
    2,373

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    In Greek, we have a similar saying:
    Βλέπουμε το δένδρο (δέντρο) και χάνουμε το δάσος
    vlepume to ðenðro (or ðendro) ke xanume to ðasos
    We see the tree and miss the forest.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    ישראל
    Native language
    עברית
    Age
    38
    Posts
    2,235

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    In Hebrew too:
    מרוב עצים לא רואים את היער

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hannover
    Native language
    German, Northern Germany
    Age
    56
    Posts
    12,244

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Hello

    In German, it's the same:

    "Ich seh den Wald vor lauter Bäumen nicht!"
    Until you stalk and overrun, you can't devour anyone. -- Hobbes

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Helsinki, Finland
    Native language
    Finnish
    Posts
    2,094

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    It's the same in Finnish, too:

    Ei näe metsää puilta.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Native language
    Nederlands / Dutch (Belgium)
    Posts
    4,265

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Hi,

    In Dutch: Ik zie door het bos (forest) de bomen (trees) niet meer.

    Groetjes,

    Frank
    If you open your mind too much, your brain might fall out.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Native language
    Serbian
    Posts
    1,224

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Serbian:

    od drveta ne videti šumu

    (not to see the forest for the tree)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Madrid
    Native language
    Spanish-Spain
    Posts
    404

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    En español de España decimos:
    "Los árboles no te dejan ver el bosque"
    "The trees prevent you from seeing the forest"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Derby (central England)
    Native language
    English - England
    Age
    59
    Posts
    30,443

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    In British English: "Can't see the wood for the trees."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    USA (Φιλαδέλφεια)
    Native language
    Russian (Moscow)
    Posts
    3,976

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Russian: зa дерeвьями лeca нe видeть [ze dereviami lesa ne videt] - same saying

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Native language
    Russian
    Posts
    101

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    I looked on the internet and I found :
    Czech - Nevidí dřevo pro/přes stromy
    French - Impossible de voir le bois pour les arbres

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Prague
    Native language
    Hungarian
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    4,709

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Quote Originally Posted by Akis View Post
    I looked on the internet and I found :
    Czech - Nevidí dřevo pro/přes stromy
    French - Impossible de voir le bois pour les arbres
    I'd prefer: Pro stromy nevidí les in Czech.
    [ɒkinɛk humorɒ vɒn, mindɛnˤtud, ɒkinɛk niŋʧ, mindɛnrɛ ke.pɛʃ]

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    near Grenoble
    Native language
    French - France
    Age
    65
    Posts
    10,188

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    In French we say: Les arbres cachent la forêt. (The trees hide the forest).

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Brno, Česká republika
    Native language
    Brazílie, portugalština
    Posts
    6,256

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    On the Internet I've found As árvores não deixam ver a floresta (The trees don't let one see the forest) in Portuguese, but I don't know how widespread it is.
    Jazyk

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    București
    Native language
    Romanian
    Posts
    8,037

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Romanian: Nu vezi pădurea de copaci (you can't see the forest because of the trees)
    "I know exactly what words I am wanting to say, but somehow or other they is always getting squiffsquiddled around" - The BFG/Roald Dahl

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Native language
    Portuguese (Portugal)
    Posts
    28,006

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Quote Originally Posted by jazyk View Post
    On the Internet I've found As árvores não deixam ver a floresta (The trees don't let one see the forest) in Portuguese, but I don't know how widespread it is.
    You can also say "Não vê a floresta por causa das árvores", and it would be easily understood, but this isn't really a set saying in Portuguese.
    Deuparth gwaith yw ei ddechrau.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Native language
    中文
    Posts
    7

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Anyone knows how it's said in Italian ?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Ho Chi Minh City
    Native language
    Vietnamese
    Age
    20
    Posts
    6

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    We Vietnamese say: "Thấy cây chứ không thấy rừng"

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Slovenia
    Native language
    Cro, Slo
    Posts
    1,604

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Slovenian:
    Ne vidim gozda od dreves

    Croatian:
    Ne mogu vidjeti šumu od drveća

    German:
    Ich kann den Wald von lauten Bäumen nicht sehen
    “Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.” - Dr. Seuss

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Sweden
    Native language
    Swedish - Sweden, Finnish
    Posts
    1,509

    Re: can't see the forest for the trees

    Swedish:
    Inte se skogen för alla träd
    - not see the forest for all the trees
    "Colorless green ideas sleep furiously" is grammatically correct but semantically nonsensical

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