bercer

Butterfly103

New Member
English
Hi everyone!
So, I have just registered here (what a great website!?!) and I was wondering if somebody could help me try and crack the meaning of "bercer" in the following sentence as none of the options on the website seem quite right. The extract in question is talking about a family sitting outside who are incapable of doing anything given the blistering heat. It says "les gens en face de nous bercent notre torpeur en psalmodiant quelques versets du Coran" - very confusing!!
My suggestion would be "the people opposite cure (?) our torpor by chanting bits from the Koran".
Looking forward to hearing your ideas. Thanks to all of you.
 
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  • Jasmine tea

    Senior Member
    French - France
    Welcome to the Forum, Butterfly103,

    It is difficult to know what the author meant exactly by there (unless the rest of the text/books gives some other clues!), but I would guess that bercer here is used to give the idea of "maintaining" the torpeur, "making it last long"... as if those chants were some kind of lullaby making you / keeping you sleepy...
     

    Butterfly103

    New Member
    English
    Unfortunately there is no other context - it is just an isolated phrase in the text, which is quite unhelpful!
    Thank you for your suggestion though - that's great.
    I'd be intrigued to see if anybody else has any other ideas too... :)
     

    Butterfly103

    New Member
    English
    Thank you for your suggestion, Chimenseena; I like your suggestion but am just wondering if you can in fact "lull torpor".
    This is such a tricky translation!
    Does anyone have any other bright ideas?
     

    Jasmine tea

    Senior Member
    French - France
    Thank you for your suggestion, Chimenseena; I like your suggestion but am just wondering if you can in fact "lull torpor".
    This is such a tricky translation!
    Does anyone have any other bright ideas?
    I can not comment on the English words, but in French usually you do not "bercer" anyone's "torpeur" either...!
     

    Santana2002

    Senior Member
    English, from Ireland
    While torpidity is a valid and correct word I feel it sounds a little forced in the translation suggested above.

    I would suggest something as follows: The people opposite us allay/ease our listlessness chanting verses from the Koran.

    Bercer=apaiser in this instance.
    Torpor=drowsiness, listlessness, idleness, sleepiness etc...
     
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    franc 91

    Senior Member
    English - GB
    The people opposite gently sing us a few verses of the Coran as we sit there trying to endure the heat (suggestion)
     
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