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Al che, certo che

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Kishu, May 15, 2008.

  1. Kishu

    Kishu Senior Member

    Florence
    Italy - Italian
    Here is one about which I'm beating my brain:

    "Falso", fu la risposta [di lui]. Al che, con fare scocciato, il primo ribatté: "Certo che hanno poca fantasia. Il nostro era riuscito meglio"

    My attempt:

    "False", was his answer. To which, with annoyed manners, the first one talked back: "Surely they are little imaginative. Ours had turned out much better"

    Corrections and opinions from the English mothertongues are more than appreciated. Thanks in advance
     
  2. Zainyx Senior Member

    England
    Bilingual: UK English - Italian
    Hi Kishu, this one is a bit tricky. As far as I can tell, you're right about the first phrase. As for the second, I think it rather depends on the context.

    I might translate 'hanno poca fantasia' more naturally and more literally as 'they have little imagination'. If the speaker already knew that, and was pointing it out as something obvious, 'certo che' might mean 'of course'.

    On the other hand, if it was previously unknown that they had little imagination and it has now become apparent, a more appropriate translation might be 'they certainly have little imagination'.

    I'm not sure how clear I've made that - a bit more context for your extract might be useful. Dipende se 'certo che' qui significa 'non mi sorprende, sapevamo già che...' oppure 'Dato questo, si vede che...'

    P.S. 'talked back' non suona motlo naturale usato in quel modo - forse 'responded' sarebbe meglio.
     
  3. Leo57 Senior Member

    Yorkshire
    UK English
    Hi there
    "Falso*", was his answer. To which, rather annoyed/with some annoyance, the first one retorted (with): "They certainly have little imagination. Ours had turned out much better"

    * "Wrong" might be better, but it depends on what they are talking about.

    Ciao
    Leo:)
     
  4. Bookmom

    Bookmom Senior Member

    "Not true!", he answered/was his answer. To which, with great annoyance, the first retorted/shot back: Clearly/Obviously they showed/have/demonstrated little immagination. Ours turned out much better!
     
  5. Leo57 Senior Member

    Yorkshire
    UK English

    Much better!:thumbsup: There's nothing wrong with your imagination!:D

    Ciao
    Leo:)
     
  6. Kishu

    Kishu Senior Member

    Florence
    Italy - Italian
    To Zaynix: "certo che" is used with a sarcastic tone: After seeing what they have done, we realise that they have little imagination.

    To Leo: they're talking about a crop circle formation, which is not genuine. So, better than anything else I should write "A fake", shouldn't I?

    Here is my attempt after your precious suggestions:

    " A fake", was his answer. To which, rather annoyed, the first one retorted with: "They are certainly little imaginative. Ours had turned out much better"

    Thanks thanks and thanks again


     
  7. Bookmom

    Bookmom Senior Member

    Thanks Leo! Your kind words are much appreciated by my 6 am brain :)
     
  8. Leo57 Senior Member

    Yorkshire
    UK English
    Hi there
    Thankyou for the context, so, if you want to go with "fake" then you will have to say: "It's a fake!", then the underlined sentence is not gramatically correct, therefore, please use any of these:

    They certainly lack imagination.
    They certainly don't have any imagination.
    They have certainly/clearly showed little imagination.
    Clearly they have no imagination.

    Ciao
    Leo:)
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2008
  9. Kishu

    Kishu Senior Member

    Florence
    Italy - Italian
    Thanks to Bookmom to, who was answering contemporaneously with me!
    In my last attempt there was a mistake. Here is my last version:

    "A fake", was his answer. To which, rather annoyed [not greatly because the speaker is not so much annoyed] , the first one retorted: "Clearly they have showed little imagination. Ours had turned out [not turned out because the action is previous to what they're commenting] much better"
     
  10. Bookmom

    Bookmom Senior Member

     
  11. Zainyx Senior Member

    England
    Bilingual: UK English - Italian
    Thanks for the context, Kishu :)

    Nitpicking, perhaps, but I think 'the first one' might be more tidily translated as 'the former', or simply 'the first'. Also, in direct speech rather than narration, I think 'turned out' would always be used, even to refer to a past event.
     
  12. Murphy

    Murphy Senior Member

    Sicily, Italy
    English, UK
    Although in the Italian version a past perfect is used, it doesn't sound very natural in English. I agree with Bookmom that the simple past is better here.

    "Ours turned out"...or simply...."ours was much better".

    Edit: As Zainyx has said, because this is direct speech, the simple past indicates a previous action. A contemporanous action would be described using a present or present perfect construction.

    Eg ...ours has turned out much better
    ....ours is much better
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2008
  13. Kishu

    Kishu Senior Member

    Florence
    Italy - Italian
    First of all I thank you all of you for your interest and precious tips.

    I've understood your considerations about using the simple past in direct speech and agree with you.

    Here is the final version:

    "It's a fake", was his answer. To which, rather annoyed, the first retorted: "Clearly they have shown little imagination. Ours turned out much better"

    I hope that now the sentences are grammatically and contextually correct

    Thank you again
     

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