"Once upon a time" / Romanian Fairy Tales

Discussion in 'Română (Romanian)' started by Xophmeister, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. Xophmeister Junior Member

    Cheltenham, England
    English (GB)
    Dear all,

    I have been told that Romanian fairy tales often start with an equivalent to the English "Once upon a time...". However, the literal paraphrasing of the Romanian version is something like, "Once something happened. It was important. Obviously this is the case, because we have a written a story about it." -- Something like that!

    Could anyone please let me know what the actual Romanian phrase is?

    Many thanks :)
     
  2. farscape mod-errare humanum est

    Ottawa, Canada
    Romanian
    You are right, the introduction to many Romanian fairy tales (basme) begins with:

    "A fost odată ca niciodată, că de n-ar fi, nu s-ar mai povesti"

    This intro is in fact a little poem of four lines, with the underlined words rhyming, first two and then the last two.

    I'll make an attempt to explain this English, although you've got the gist of it already and a direct translation into English doesn't always make sense. So here we go:

    "A fost odată ca niciodată, că de n-ar fi, nu s-ar mai povesti, un castel..."

    "There was once upon a time, like never before, 'cause if it wasn't we wouldn't tell you this story, a castle..."

    As I said, it may not make perfect sense in English, but hey, it's a fairy tale :)

    Best,
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2010
  3. Xophmeister Junior Member

    Cheltenham, England
    English (GB)
    Mulţumesc! :)
     
  4. farscape mod-errare humanum est

    Ottawa, Canada
    Romanian
    Cu plăcere :) I changed the second sentence and I think it sounds better now.

    Later,
     
  5. Bostico New Member

    ROMANIAN
    sounds indeed good :)
     
  6. misadro

    misadro Senior Member

    I am a not particularly a fan of ’cause I would rather use for instead ..
    Moreover … că de n-ar fi … to me, in fact, reads … că de n-ar fi fost …
    My try : Once upon a time, there was a … [castle, etc.], for if there had not been one such, word would not still go round ...
     
  7. farscape mod-errare humanum est

    Ottawa, Canada
    Romanian
    Well said, misadro, "for" definitely works way better here :)

    Later,

    .
     

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