The longer a story, the more tiresome.

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by Aydintashar, May 4, 2007.

  1. Aydintashar Senior Member

    Tehran, IRAN
    Iran, Turkish
    Hi,

    How do we express a "the...the" expression in Arabic? Examples:
    - The more children you have, the less freedom you can enjoy.
    - The longer a story, the more tiresome.

    With great thanks who would provide suggestions.
    Aydin
     
  2. licinio

    licinio Senior Member

    Italian
    I'll attempt to give a suggestion
    كلما زاد عدد الأولاد قلت حرية الأبوين
    أصبحت الحكاية مملة بقدر ما كانت طويلا
     
  3. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    كلما ازداد عدد الأولاد كلما قلت حرية الأبوين

    Notice that I would repeat كلما.

    أصبحت الحكاية مملة بقدر ما كانت طويلا :cross:

    كلما طالت القصة كلما أصبحت مملة/متعبة

    So the formula is كلما...كلما, with verbs in the past tense.
     
  4. cherine

    cherine Moderator

    Alexandria, Egypt
    Arabic (Egypt).
    Yes, kullama is the right choice.

    But we don't have to use it twice:
    كلما ازداد عدد الأولاد قلت حرية الأبوين
    كلما طالت القصة صارت مملة

    I'd like to add what I found in my grammar book:
    The sentence with "kullama" is أسلوب شرط but kullama doesn't put the verb in the case of الجزم , like لو، لولا، إذا، لمّا . And كلما: ظرف للماضي، ولا يليه إلا الفعل الماضي
     
  5. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    Perhaps my tendency to repeat it is a dialectal influence. In Palestinian Arabic, it must be repeated:

    كل ما كتروا الولاد كل ما قلت حرية الأبو والإم - Kul ma kitru liwlaad kul ma 2allat 7urriyyet il2abu wil2im.
    كل ما طولت القصة كل ما صارت تزهق أكتر - Kul ma Tiwlat il2uSSa kul ma Saarat itzahhe2 aktar.

    What about other dialects?
     
  6. ayed

    ayed Senior Member

    Riyadh
    Arabic
    كلما كثرو العيال قلت حريتك
    كلما صارت القصة طويلة ، صارت مملة
    كلما طالت القصة ، صارت مملة
     
  7. Abu Bishr Senior Member

    Afrikaans, South Africa
    Hi All

    My preliminary findings have it that repeating كلما does happen quite often, but that it is a common mistake. If you conduct a google search for تكرار كلما you'll find the topic of "repeating كلما " being discussed. In the end, it might come down to "descriptivism vs. prescriptivism" which is altogether another issue but relevant to our question here.
     
  8. clevermizo Moderator

    St. Louis, MO
    English (USA), Spanish
    It would make sense if it was colloquial influence in writing to double كلما - I don't know what the classical grammarians have to say about it. If you use كلما in colloquial without repetition, and with the non-past verb, I believe it can mean "whenever" rather than "the more... the more...". كلما بتيجي لبيتي بتطلب مني مصاري : whenever you come to my house you ask me for money. Thus doubling كلما in MSA writing may be an attempt at avoiding this secondary meaning.
     
  9. Abu Bishr Senior Member

    Afrikaans, South Africa
    Hi All

    Apparently, it's not just doubled in the context of "the more ...the more". I was thinking that it might a little like the English: "Everytime I tell you not to do it, everytime you insist on doing it", as if for emphasis. This is especially this case, I think, when the first clause is somewhat long in English.

    Moreover, I think that the comparative "more" is achieved through using an equivalent comparative in Arabic like أكثر or أطول , etc. depending on the context. The repetition of كلما could be, I think, due to it being repeated in English, making it a case of linguistic borrowing.
     
  10. licinio

    licinio Senior Member

    Italian
    Hello
    I must have used the construction with
    بقدر ما
    in the wrong context or in an improper way in my previous posting, but here are examples taken from the internet for you to comment on. In my opinion they express the same meaning as
    كلما

    وفضلا عن ذلك، فإن العمل يغدو بسيطا بقدر ما يزداد تقسيم العمل
    بقدر ما ازداد الزمن ازدادت السعادة،
    بقدر ما ازداد المجتمع تعقيداً، بقدر ما بات الناس يعتمدون أكثر فأكثر على...

    What do you think?
     
  11. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    You are right. Those sentences do indeed express the same meaning.

    However, your sentence was not constructed correctly, as you suspected.
     
  12. cherine

    cherine Moderator

    Alexandria, Egypt
    Arabic (Egypt).
    Sorry for a belated reply.

    Yes, this is the same in the Egyptian dialect:
    كل ما كتر الولاد كل ما قلت حرية الأب والأم
    koll(e) ma keter el-welaad, koll(e) ma 2allet 7orreyyet el-abb wel2om
    كل ما طولت القصة كل ما كانت مملة
    koll(e) ma Tewlet el-qiSSa koll(e) ma kaanet momella

    The (e) is a slightly pronounced "liaison" between koll and the word following it.

    If we use one "koll" in the sentence it will mean "each time that", like:
    koll(e) mashoofak afteker elly 7aSal
    كل ما اشوفك افتكر اللي حصل
    Each time I see you I remember what happened
     
  13. licinio

    licinio Senior Member

    Italian
    Although بحسبما seems to be used mainly with the meaning of "according to what" as in
    بحسبما قال\أفاد\أذكر\ورد
    I have come across it with a correlative meaning similar to كلما
    ولكن بحسبما اذلّوهم هكذا نموا وامتدّوا
     
  14. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    Yes, here it means "as much as they have..." or "to the degree that they have..."
     
  15. suma Senior Member

    USA
    English, USA
    This would not have been the translation I'd expect, but when I saw it I thought it was acceptable. Any reason why you marked it as wrong? طويلا needs taa marbooTah
     
  16. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    Apart from the gender of the adjective, the verbs are in the wrong tense.

    The translation of the sentence is: "The story became boring to the degree that it was long," or, more idiomatically, "The story got more and more boring as it got longer."

    The original sentence is a general statement about stories.
     
  17. suma Senior Member

    USA
    English, USA
    Ah yes, you're right. I overlooked that part: aSba7at.
     
  18. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    I have my doubts about this theory because in English, I don't think it is natural or common to repeat "every time" as in your sentence, which sounds very odd to me.
     
  19. suma Senior Member

    USA
    English, USA
    But this sounds more natural, wouldn't you agree?:

    "The more I tell you not to do it, the more you insist on doing it." So I think that repitition like that is allowed in English but just depents which word you use.
     
  20. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Chicago, IL
    American English, Palestinian Arabic
    Good point. :thumbsup: But I'm still not sure whether that has had an influence on the construction in Arabic.
     
  21. suma Senior Member

    USA
    English, USA
    I agree. It's probably a case of both languages with similar semantic features developed independently of each other.
     

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