be supposed to

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by sandwitch, Nov 17, 2005.

  1. sandwitch New Member

    How can I say
    " he was supposed to give the stock to me but he can't do it anymore"

    Grazie 1000
  2. uinni

    uinni Senior Member

    Italy, Italian
    "Era previsto che mi consegnasse le provviste/merci/...(?) ma non può più farlo"
    NOTE that no "egli" is implied here (i.e: "egli era previsto" :cross: !!!).


    "(egli) Avrebbe dovuto consegnarmi le provviste(?)/merci/... ma non può più farlo" -this less precise in meaning, though

  3. ElaineG

    ElaineG Senior Member

    Brooklyn NY
    It would help if you specified what you meant by "stock" (merchandise, shares or something), otherwise as uinni has noted, you can't get an accurate translation.
  4. sandwitch New Member

    I c... Stock here means merchandise.
    Is this too late?
  5. lsp

    lsp Senior Member

    US, English
    la merce/le merci

    It's never too late, nothing "expires" here!
  6. Sonogina Junior Member

    New York
    English USA
    Ciao a tutti,

    I have been reading all the threads on "supposed to" but I am still not sure how to translate something like "I was supposed to go..." or " What am I supposed to do?" Any help would be appreciated.

    My attempt - though it is probably wrong:
    1) Dovevo andare...or Avro' dovuto a andare
    2) Che cose dovro' fare?

  7. fox71

    fox71 Senior Member

    1) Dovevo andare.... o SAREI dovuto andare (quest'ultima forma è più corretta)
    2) Che cosa dovrei fare?
  8. Sonogina Junior Member

    New York
    English USA
    In translation 1) why do we use the auxilary essere? and in 2) why the conditional?
  9. shamblesuk

    shamblesuk Senior Member

    England, English

    1) Because 'andare' is intransitive and therefore takes 'essere' rather than 'avere'.
    2) Because 'I'm supposed to...' in this context means 'I should' and 'dovrei' is the conditional of 'to have to/must'

  10. Sonogina Junior Member

    New York
    English USA
    Okay so example number two I completely understand, just one last question. In 1) the verb following the auxilary is dovere - is the case always then that you would change the auxilary depending on the verb following dovere? Like I had to go...would be sono dovuto andare and not ho dovuto andare (Is this a rule with volere and potere as well - does the auxilary change? - I may remember something like this, but I am not certain)
  11. Mickele

    Mickele Senior Member

    Italian, Tuscany
  12. mateintwo Senior Member

    Sweden, Former resident USA
    As you know supposed to often is implied to mean he/she/they expected me to do something so you could in these cases translate it with aspettarsi or volere.
    I was supposed to go: Lui/lei si aspettava/ Loro si aspettavano che Io andassi....
    What am I supposed to do? Che cosa volete da me?

    Of course in cases in which you made your own plans to do something and then could not, I would use should or as suggested dovere constructions
  13. simonaj Senior Member

    italian, Italy
    Qual'è la pronuncia di "supposed to"? So che la D non si pronuncia ma la S finale si pronuncia S o Z?
    Thanks .
  14. CGD Junior Member

    Litchfield Park, AZ
    English, United States
    In "supposed to" the S is pronounced S. If you said, "I don't suppose so," the S would be pronounced Z. This is in the Southwestern United States. I don't know for certain whether that pronunciation changes in other areas or English-speaking countries.

    I never considered that we don't say the D, but we don't really. Very interesting.

  15. zerduja Junior Member

    I have been all over the U.S. and have heard it both ways. ("s" and "z" both ways) so I would reccomend that you choose which one you like the best.
  16. Tenuwan Junior Member

    Sri lanka ,Sinhala
    Hi all,
    How to say "supposed to" in Italian. I referred the forum but the answer is not there. I am interested in making out the theory, like how to say
    I am supposed to ... ( per Io)
    You are supposed to .. ( per tu)
    per lei/lui ,noi, voi, loro ...
  17. Janey UK

    Janey UK Senior Member

    Norfolk, England
    Native speaker of British English
    I think one simply uses the verb "dovere"...which means one must do something.

    "Devo pulire la mia casa" = I must clean my house
    "Dovrei pulire la mia casa" = I ought to clean my house

    But probably the native speakers can advise you better....

    Ciao Jane x
  18. Saoul

    Saoul Senior Member

    Ciao Tenuwan,

    context, as always is key!
  19. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
  20. Tenuwan Junior Member

    Sri lanka ,Sinhala
    Thank you Paul, as I told you first I referred the forum. It's too complicated to get an idea since I am knew.
    Jenny I think "Dovere" plays the role here.
    Thank you everybody.
  21. MonicaGuido Senior Member

    Si suppone che io...
  22. Zenone New Member

    Excuse me, I wonder if "you are supposed to be sth/-ed" is a polite or not. What does it mean properly? "Si presume che tu sia qualcosa", "Immagino che tu stia facendo qualcosa", "Suppongo che tu sia qualcosa/stia facendo qualcosa!?

  23. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Scusa ma non capisco la domanda..
    You're supposed to be something non ha molto senso..
  24. Murphy

    Murphy Senior Member

    Sicily, Italy
    English, UK
    Si suppone che tu sia....... but it would be helpful if you could put the sentence in context for us.
  25. Zenone New Member

    Sorry. Actually there isn't any context. It's just a doubt, for instance:
    "You are supposed to be her boyfriend" or "You are supposed to be arrived": Suppongo che tu sia il suo ragazzo/che tu sia arrivato. E' corretto?
  26. Murphy

    Murphy Senior Member

    Sicily, Italy
    English, UK
    Non direi "suppongo che...." perché "you are supposed to..." è una forma passiva che somiglia più alla forma impersonale italiana "si suppone che.."

    Però, questa particolare espressione viene spesso usata come una forma di critica verso la persona descritta, che non si comporta come gli altri vorrebbero :

    You are supposed to be her boyfriend but you are behaving like her enemy. (Dici di essere/si crede che tu sia il suo ragazzo ma ti comporti come il suo nemico)

    You are supposed to have arrived by now. Why are you still on the train?(Saresti dovuto già arrivare. Perché sei ancora sul treno?

    Quindi, la traduzione può cambiare a seconda del contesto.:)
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2008
  27. Cerace Junior Member

    Attenzione che, come già detto, il sintagma inglese "to be supposed to" è diverso dal nostro "si suppone" e ha delle sfumature culturali molto particolari e secondo me affascinantissime. Non c'è in italiano una cosa che lo traduca al meglio, perchè pressupone una sorta di punto di vista esterno e morale che di volta in volta noi identifichiamo in cose diverse.

    Nel caso di you are supposed to be something, è un richiamo a una funzione/ruolo che dovresti svolgere ma, presumibilmente, non stai svolgendo al meglio. Però è molto più forte del nostro "si suppone", che è una specie di ipotesi non del tutto verificata. Invece il "supposed" vuol dire proprio che in virtù di un paradigma morale/sociale/autoritativo/etico/da precedente accordo tu dovresti essere quella cosa.
  28. Einstein

    Einstein Senior Member

    Milano, Italia
    UK, English
    "What are you doing at home? You're supposed to be at school!" Here the translation is clear: "Dovresti essere a scuola".

    Other cases are not so easy:
    "I love you, but only 50%"
    "What's that supposed to mean?"
    This is different from What does that mean? (cosa vuol dire?) because it expresses a strong suspicion that it's an absurd statement.

    "The meeting should begin at 10 o'clock" = Se non ci sono problemi, dovrebbe cominciare alle 10.
    "The meeting is supposed to begin at 10 o'clock but..." expresses strong doubts that it's possible.

    You show me a strange object:
    "What's that?" = cos'è?
    "What's that supposed to be?" = cosa sarebbe?

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