Mi manca il respiro e mi sento soffocare

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Mezzivi, Jan 13, 2008.

  1. Mezzivi Member

    Mi manca il respiro e mi sento soffocare

    Does this mean I can't get any air, and I think I'm suffocating.

    If it does mean this, are there any other ways of saying the same think?

    And how was this sentence formed i.e. how come mi goes before manca etc..

    Thanks in advance for any help.
  2. Velvet Senior Member

    Rome, Italy
    Italian Roma, Italia
    Yes, the meaning is correct.
    You can replace "respiro" by "aria" or "fiato" but basically it is the only way to say it.

    The sentence is constructed by using the verb "mancare" and a reflexive verb "sentirsi"(=to feel in Italian is reflexive or reflective, however you say it:eek:!) so:
    I feel = mi sento
    "mancare" has a transitive meaning = something is missing/lacking "manca qualcosa", in this case the verb is followed by what we call "complemento oggetto", i.e. object
    instead, if you miss something it means that something is lacking TO you, it's a "complemento di termine", not a direct object = manca A me. "A ME" is "MI" and you need to put it before the verb.

    Hope I don't confuse you even more!;)

  3. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    Let's wait for opinions more expert.
  4. conman81 New Member

    Thanks for the answers some people have already given to this discussion, it has helped me....but I have another "mi manca" question. How would you translate the following:

    "Mi manca, o Dei, la lena!"

    The context is this quote is from the opera Don Giovanni, and the character who is speaking is a servant who is scared out of his mind because a ghost is basically talking to him and to his master. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!! Thanks!
  5. fitter.happier

    fitter.happier Senior Member

    Naples, Italy
    As you know, mancare has several meanings. In the sentence you quoted, the meaning is to lack.
    Mi manca la lena = I lack the will (to do something).
    Lena is an old-fashioned word that survives in modern Italian in expressions such as di buona lena.

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