accumulation of habits


Senior Member
France Français
Hi there!
I'm working on a text that deals with physical laws, and the possibility to change some of them.
There is a word, habit, I'm not sure it can be translated by "habitude!"
Original text:
"The laws of nature are not absolute; rather, they are accumulations of habits. The law of gravity is a pretty well-fixed habits, probably owing to the beings throughout the universe who give it general assent."
My try:
"Les lois de la nature ne sont pas absolues; elles sont plutôt l'accumulation de traditions (?????). La loi de la gravité est une tradition bien établie, probablement grâce aux êtrs de par l'univers qui lui donnent une large adhésion."
Surprising, isn't it?
  • Uncle Bob

    Senior Member
    British English
    I think it probably is "habitude" but since the author seems to have as unusual a grasp of English ("a pretty well-fixed habits"!) as he/she does of science one wonders if it makes any difference.
    Last edited:


    Senior Member
    American English, Yiddish
    As an equivalent for lack of thinking, "idée reçue" is ok, but the spirit of "habitude" hews closer to the text. Unless the author is trying to explain things to laymen (in a very condescending way -- la vulgarisation pas tellement haute), and means "what we currently think are the laws of nature may well be superseded, as Newton's "Law" was by Einstein's", he is of course talking through his hat. As far as grasp of English, "habits" might just be a typo, but the final clause is certainly translated from another mind-set.


    Senior Member
    France Français
    Hello everybody!
    akaAj: I don't think it's just a typo, since we can read it several times...
    I like very much Micia93's idea of "idées reçues" that seems to be close the original meaning.
    Thank you! ;)
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