Discussion in 'All Languages' started by ThomasK, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. ThomasK Senior Member

    (near) Kortrijk, Belgium
    Belgium, Dutch
    How do you translate 'to be busy' please?

    How do you translate 'to be busy' please? Ik heb het druk [I have it busy], NL ik ben druk [I am busy ] (druk > drukken, to press)

    Busy seems to be based on Dutch bezig, of unclear origin (to wander ?).

    French has occupé, I believe.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  2. kirahvi Senior Member

    Finnish: olla kiireinen (to be busy)

    In the Finnish etymological dictionary there are two possible etymologies given to the word kiire (noun, busyness).

    According to the first explanation it comes from kiiriä - a verb meaning rolling, moving forward, sound being carried. This explanation isn't very plausible, because the words kiire (and its dialectal variant kiiru) seem to be older than the verb.

    According to the second, more plausible, explanation it comes from word kiiras, which is of germanic origin and means wanting, greedy.

    No connection to pressure.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  3. arielipi Senior Member

    להיות עסוק lihiyot asuk[=direct translate of what you asked, no indication of who is supposed to be].

    EDIT: עסוק asuk root is עסק which is business related form. It is used in [if the person wants to of course] any place that business can be thought of.
    its non of your business what hes doing - can be used here.
    and for any other business thing.

    it can also be used for 'deal' in business, making a deal, but not for dealing cards or bettingת also it can be used to say that a person was/is 'doing' with something. We will use one form of it as a verb(osek - doing) isntead of the real verb that is supposed to be used, this suggests it is not the persons main thing. Example: he is doing at the deaf center( helping/volunteering there).

    A person can be busy עסוק which already suggests he is under pressure because he is busy, but other than that it doesnt.

    The origin of the word is from ancient hebrew.
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  4. ThomasK Senior Member

    (near) Kortrijk, Belgium
    Belgium, Dutch
    Could both of you comment on the origin of the word? Any reference to pressure?
  5. apmoy70

    apmoy70 Senior Member

    In Greek:

    Busy: Present tense mediopassive participle «απασχολημένος, απασχολημένη, απασχολημένο» [apasxoli'menos] (masc.), [apasxoli'meni] (fem.), [apasxoli'meno] (neut.) < Hellenistic Koine v. «ἀπασχολέω/ἀπασχολῶ» ăpăsxŏléō (uncontracted) / «ἀπασχολῶ» ăpăsxŏlṓ (contracted) --> to keep someone employed; compound, prefix and preposition «ἀπὸ» apò --> from, finishing, completing (PIE *apo-, off, away, cf. Eng. of/off) + privative prefix «α-» + fem. noun. «σχολὴ» sxŏlḕ (in Modern Greek «σχόλη» ['sxoli] (fem.)) --> leisure, free time (PIE *seǵhe-/*sǵhē-, to hold, have, possess, cf Gr. «σχολεῖον», school (lit. the place where spare time chatting -and the knowledge gained through it during free time- took place), Proto-Germanic *skulō > Ger. Schule, Dutch/Eng. school)
  6. ThomasK Senior Member

    (near) Kortrijk, Belgium
    Belgium, Dutch
    @ Apmoy: interesting to hear that scholè is the root word, as we don't even have a (positive) term for that.

    @ arielipi: does 'asuk' imply anything like stress, as such, or is it just 'to act'?

    @kirahvi: I understand, but starting from Greek and Dutch, the first hypothesis does not seem that implausible. What would be the precise meaning of kiire ? It is funny that the noun precedes the verb, whereas it seems to refer to an action, isn't it? It does mean 'haste', 'hurry', doesn't it, which I'd consider verbs as well...
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  7. arielipi Senior Member

    Again, asuk is simply busy(present tense, stating/declaring form), it depends on the tone by which you say you are busy, but regular use of it is simply stating that the person is not available at the moment.

    EDIT: Oh, and for the 'to act', osek עוסק is the general word for 'doing', hes doing music/cooking etc, but the original use of this root is for business related.
  8. kirahvi Senior Member

    There are words which share the meaning of and are similar to kiire in other Finnic languages (the dictionary lists Estonian kiire, Karelian kiireh, Votic tšiireh and Veps kiruh), but the verb is found only in Finnish, so that's why the theory is considered implausible.

    All in all, there's no known clear etymology for the word kiire.

    As to its meaning: hurry, haste, rush, yes. But it's clearly a noun.

    Edit: You can also say minulla on kiire to mean I'm busy (lit. to me is hurry).
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  9. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member


    the most idiomatic translation would be "sok a munkám" [I have a lot of work]
    and we use the phrase elfoglalt occupied just like French, elfoglalt < el + foglalt < fog [take, seize]
  10. merquiades

    merquiades Senior Member

    USA Northeast
    Other Romance Languages are very close to French. Ocupado/a (Spanish/Portuguese), Ocupat/da (Catalan), Occupato/a (Italian). I am occupied.
  11. 涼宮

    涼宮 Senior Member

    Sbaeneg/Castellano (Venezuela)
    In Japanese it's 忙しい isogashii. As you know the verb to be doesn't exist in JP so that's all you say. The kanji itself can mean busy or restless. Mandarin uses the same kanji to mean busy.
  12. Holger2014 Senior Member

    German: "Ich habe viel zu tun"
    "ich habe" = "I have"
    "viel" = "much"
    "zu tun" = "to do", "to have to get done"

    In Switzerland they tend to say "Ich habe (ein wenig) Druck", I think, similar to the Dutch and French expressions mentioned above.
  13. bibax Senior Member

    Czech (formal):

    Jsem zaneprázdněný. = I am busy.

    from the verb zaneprázdniti = to make busy (non-vacant, unoccupied), from adj. neprázdný; prázdný = empty, vacant;

    Jsem (plně) vytížený.

    from the verb plně (= fully) vytížiti = to make full use of sth, to keep sb fully occupied, to load sth fully, < tíha = weight, heaviness;

    It doesn't mean: I am/feel under (huge) pressure.

    Colloquially and more expressively:

    Jsem v jednom kole. = I am in a wheel (circle, round).

    Mám honičku. = I have a pursuit/tag (a children's game). (honiti = to chase, to pursue)

    slang: Mám fofr.

    fofr = winnowing fan (for separating chaff from grain ) < Ger. Fächer (a device that is held in the hand and moved back and forth to cool a person);

  14. mataripis

    mataripis Senior Member

    Tagalog: Maging abala.
  15. 123xyz

    123xyz Senior Member

    Skopje, Macedonia

    busy = зафатен (adjectival past participle of "зафаќа", which doesn't actually mean to "make busy" or "occupy" but more or less "to reach/affect/spread over/consume", e.g. it would be used to say to talk about which areas of the forest managed to caught fire or which villages the plague managed to spread to; either way, the ultimate root is "фаќа", meaning "to catch", if that is of any significance)

    This word is neutral and doesn't imply stress or worries - simply that one has things to do.

    Another expression would be "имам работа", literally meaning "I have work", though in English one would actually have to say "I have work to do" to be correct.
  16. M Mira Senior Member

    Mandarin - Taiwanese Standard
    "busy" is "忙",but to express busy-ness, there are two way to do it: (I don't know what's the standard way to gloss here, so pardon if I'm doing it wrong)
    我 在 忙
    I be.in busy
    = "I'm (currently) busy"; "I'm busy now"

    我 很 忙
    I very busy
    = "I'm (usually) busy"; "I'm a busy man/woman"

    The distinction is not a clear dichotomy, however. While 我在忙 clearly expresses progressiveness, 我很忙 can be either progressive or habitual in practice.

    我 忙
    I busy
    is not a valid sentence, but can be a valid phrase:
    難道 我 忙 不好 嗎?
    could.it.be I busy bad Q
    "Is it bad for me to be busy?"

    There are also cases where the three can be used interchangeably:
    他 看 我 忙/很 忙/在 忙,就 沒有 打擾 我。
    he see I busy/very busy/be.in busy, with.regard.to no bother I
    "He saw that I was busy, so he didn't bother me."

    Common usage of this character only appeared in the Ming Dynasty writings, usually bonded in 慌忙、匆忙、急忙, all of which means "to be in a rush", and I believe the notion of "busy" evolved from it.

    Disclaimer: I myself came up with all of the above. I cannot say if it holds true for Mandarin used by people outside of my social circle, since there's no "standard Mandarin grammar" being taught at school.
  17. Linguoman Senior Member

    Russian - Russia

    Of course, it depends on a context. But in the most typical situation (e.g.: I am busy, so I cannot talk to you right now), the typical expression is:

    Masculine (said by a man):
    Я занят. [ˈjaˈzanʲɪt]

    Feminine (said by a woman):
    Я занята. [ˈjazənʲɪˈta]

    Where "я" is "I", and "занят" is a short (predicative form) of the adjective "занятый" meaning "occupied", which is itself formed as the past tense passive participle of the verb "занять" (to occupy) - a perfective verb.

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