Am I going to eat your letter when it comes

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English nerd

Senior Member
Hindi
I was reading a chapter in my English Book
"The Letter" by Dhumaketu. So it is about a man Ali who goes to the post office everyday waiting for his daughter's letter. So the Postmaster,annoyed with his continuous presence blurts out:
Am I going to eat your letter when it comes?

Is the use of "eat your letter when it comes" natural?
Summary and Analysis of Dhumaketu’s The Letter
Thank you:)
 
  • Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    No. I think you're translating an idiomatic expression from Hindi. What's idiomatic in one language needn't be in another.
     

    English nerd

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    I know it doesn't sound natural but that's how it was written in my English Book,so I felt like asking.

    What what could be used instead?
     

    Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    I suppose it was meant to be a literal translation of the Hindi idiom. I can't think of an equivalent idiomatic English expression for that context. In English the postman could say: No one's going to run away with your letter. We'll deliver it when it arrives.
     
    Last edited:

    English nerd

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    Because I thought that if it's in the book them it might just be fine. So I just wanted to confirm.
    Native opinion is always better.
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    I think the metaphor is perfectly good in English, it's only the turn of phrase that's a little un-idiomatic except when spoken by an Indian. The more native British form might be "What do you think I'm going to do with your letter when it comes? Eat it?"
     
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