didn't take much

dichelson

Senior Member
Italy/Italian
Hello: I opened another thread about the same excerpt. My second query is about the meaning of "didn't take much":

"Remember when the water pipe broke under the mercantile? Cost Ebo a lot of money to clean up that mess, now didn't it?" Charlie lowered his voice and moved over to Doug and Kyle to share the secret. "Did it with my little hacksaw! Didn't take much, but it worked!"

I'd guess "didn't take much" amounts to "it was pretty easy". Is that correct? Thank you
 
  • AngelEyes

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Yes, exactly. It didn't take much time or skill to fix the problem.

    AngelEyes
     

    brian

    Senior Member
    AmE (New Orleans)
    Suppongo che letteralmente voglia dire, "Non c'è voluto molto," senza riferimento al tempo però, cioè "Non c'è voluta tanta forza," ecc.
     

    AngelEyes

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    I don't know what Brian just said, but I was wrong in my other post!

    Charlie didn't fix the problem...he caused the problem with his handy hacksaw. When he said it was easy, he meant his tool and his willingness to do bad deeds with it made the destruction very easy to produce.

    I'm sorry for confusing you!

    And that Charlie is a nasty boy.

    AngelEyes
     

    brian

    Senior Member
    AmE (New Orleans)
    Hi AngelEyes, my post just offers a (kind of literal) translation into Italian. Usually "to take time/energy/etc." can be translated into Italian with "volerci tempo/energia/ecc." For example:

    Ci vuole un'ora per arrivare alla stazione = It takes an hour to get to the station.
    Ci vuole molta esperienza per fare questo lavoro = It takes a lot of experience to do this work.

    My translation, "Non c'è voluto molto," just means "It didn't take much." However, a lot of times, "ci vuole, c'è voluto, etc." will refer to time if nothing else is stated or implied: C'è voluto molto? = Did it take long? That's why I also suggested, "Non c'è voluta tanta forza" = "It didn't take much effort."

    It should still coincide with your clarification above about the meaning of the sentence. :)
     

    AngelEyes

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Brian,

    Whew. :D

    Thank you for clarifying. It was so obvious: the purposeful injury Charlie wanted to inflict on poor Ebo.

    What's even more disturbing is the flippancy with which he expressed his actions. He was almost bragging about how easy, how simple it was to do what he did using his hacksaw.

    Ooh..Karma will catch up with him at the end of the book, I'm sure.

    AngelEyes
     

    brian

    Senior Member
    AmE (New Orleans)
    Cosa devo fare per vederti?
    Cosa bisogna fare per vederti?
    Che si deve fare per vederti?

    Che cosa ci vuole per vederti? (most literal)

    And other variations on the theme. Maybe more context would help.
     
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