hinausträumen

Discussion in 'Deutsch (German)' started by PaulQ, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    Ich habe Schwierigkeiten mit einer geeigneten Übersetzung für hinausträumen.

    Es steht heute kein Altar im Chor wie früher. Aber man begreift, daß die Menschen in diesem Raum schon damals über Priester und Sakrament hinausträumten und sehnten zu dem, was über allem in die Höhe unsichtbar und unbegreifbar waltet.

    „Maastricht. Führer in Wort und Bild durch die alte Stadt für die deutschen Soldaten“ von Oberleutnant Schubert 1941.


    Zur Zeit habe ich:
    Today, there is no longer an altar in the chancel as there was earlier. But you realise that, in those days, the people in this space had their reveries of priests and the sacrament and [they] yearned for that which, in the heavens, invisible and ineffable, presides over all.
     
  2. perpend

    perpend Senior Member

    American English
    I think I would use "dreamt of something different", but not necessarily in those words.

    I understand that even back then, people were dreaming of something different, above and beyond keeping the priests and sacraments confined to the chancel.

    That's just my understanding of "hinausträum(t)en" in this bit of text.
     
  3. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    Many thanks for your idea. It's very awkward to translate. It seems to me near "temporarily living out the dream" but with reverential overtones.
     
  4. Edinburgher Senior Member

    Scotland
    German/English bilingual
    I wouldn't read too much into this sentence, which after all is not a shining example of correctness.

    Aber man begreift, daß die Menschen in diesem Raum schon damals über Priester und Sakrament hinausträumten und sich sehnten zu dem, was über allem in der Höhe unsichtbar und unbegreifbar waltet.
    (and even nach would be better than zu after sich sehnten).

    I don't think we should look at hinausträumen in isolation, but treat it as part of über etwas hinausträumen. My take on this is that the people (the assembled congregation) in this room (not space) had thoughts which went beyond the tangible presence of priests and sacrament. I understand this to mean that while the priests were babbling away and administering their sacraments, these people were mentally shutting their eyes and ears to what they could see and hear, and turned to daydreaming, that their thoughts extended towards, and mused over, the abstract unnamed forces which presided over everything from on high, invisibly and incomprehensibly.

    It's not really what I'd call living out a dream, that sounds to me like something too literal and realistic; this is more abstract, trying to feel and understand God's role in what makes the world tick.
     
  5. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    Thanks for the input - in fairness the in die Höhe was my mistake, but I agree with the sich sehnten - your description coincides with and clarifies my general feeling. The concept of the German is clear but putting it into English to capture the writer's own prejudices is difficult. I have ended up with

    "the people in this area drifted into reverence at the priests and the sacrament and felt a longing for that which, in the heavens, invisible and ineffable, presides over all."

    Room does not fit: you could not have known but the chancel is a huge, open, floor-to-roof, semi-circular extension to the otherwise square interior.
     
  6. Edinburgher Senior Member

    Scotland
    German/English bilingual
    Fair enough about room/area, but I don't get the impression at all that these people drifted into a reverence at the priests etc. If anything their thoughts/dreams were being directed away from them and their sacraments, over their heads, as it were (über sie hinweg/hinaus). There is an important distinction to be drawn between über etwas träumen (dreaming about something) and über etwas hinausträumen (which would be something like dreaming beyond something -- not easy to express). They were not revering the priests, but that for which they were longing.
     
  7. PaulQ

    PaulQ Senior Member

    UK
    English - England
    That's interesting. I was probably using "ausschlafen" in the sense of "sleep until fully rested/completely" as a guide and then adding the "hin" as a "to/into themselves" - i.e. dream completely/fully to/into themselves, as in a (more serious form of) daydream.
     

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