in un estremo sussulto di dignità

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by spero, Apr 17, 2009.

  1. spero Senior Member

    Italy
    english (USA)
    The text is talking about a general who bows before a high official "in un estremo sussulto di dignità".

    "Sussulto" is really throwing me off in understanding this sentence. My instincts say "gesture", but the dictionary says "start" or "leap".

    Can someone clear this confusion?

    Thanks!
     
  2. JoanTaber Senior Member

    New York
    English Northeast USA
    Yes, "gesture" (or "show of dignity)" seems right. Check DeMauro: "un piccolo repentino."
     
  3. jeffc418 Senior Member

    English
    Ciao! If it translates to "leap", it could be a "leap of dignity" referring to a personal accomplishment for the general as if it really was difficult for him to make this bow. Do you have more context? Unless that alternate use can be validated I would stick with gesture ;)
     
  4. cscarfo Senior Member

    Italy Italian
    Sussulto here means = in a transport of .. (my best bet), a strong pulse

    Think of somebody who is about to lose his dignity, and at very last (like someone who is about to die) has a strong reaction.

    Ciao

    Carlo
     
  5. spero Senior Member

    Italy
    english (USA)
    No, no difficulty here...I think I'll stick with gesture! Thanks
     
  6. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    You guess is correct, however the original (chunk of) sentence doesn't make sense to me since there's no dignity in bowing before a person.
     
  7. cscarfo Senior Member

    Italy Italian
    Well, maybe he acknowledged a defeat.

    Ciao

    Carlo
     
  8. spero Senior Member

    Italy
    english (USA)
    Sure there is. If dignity also means respect, bowing is also a display of respect- bowing before a King, etc.
     
  9. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
     
  10. You little ripper! Senior Member

    Australia
    Australian English
  11. spero Senior Member

    Italy
    english (USA)
    Actually, given that the general is wearing civilian clothes (and the text even says he looks just like any other ordinary man at that moment), in a desperate bid for dignity just might be what I'm looking for! Thanks Charles!
     

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