e'd've got a clip round the ear if we'd made any remarks."[/

laurapiovesan

Senior Member
italian
Hi to Everybody!

I'm translating a text, here there is an old man who is suffering from a mental disease. She is in the hospital, but she wants to go home and she thinks that the doctors are observing her. Now she is talking about a old woman who used to visit her when she was old.

"Poor Emily used to visit us when she was old and the tops of her stockings fell down- like a fisherman's waders. We'd've got a clip round the ear if we'd made any remarks."

What does the sentence in bold mean?

Thank you!

Laura

Font: "Matters of Life and Death" of Bernard MacLaverty
 
  • Dlyons

    Senior Member
    English - Ireland
    "Poor Emily used to visit us when she was old and the tops of her stockings fell down- like a fisherman's waders. We'd've got a clip round the ear if we'd made any remarks."
    We would have been given a slap on the ear, if we had said anything derogatory.
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    It means that someone would have smacked the speakers on the side of the head if they had made any disparaging remarks about poor Emily's droopy stockings.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Just a thought: I guess you mean
    I'm translating a text, here there is an old woman who is suffering from a mental disease. She is in the hospital, but she wants to go home and she thinks that the doctors are observing her. Now she is talking about a old woman who used to visit her when she was old young.
    She must have been talking about her youth: for the most part, it was only children who were 'clipped round the ear' by parents, schoolteachers and so on.
     
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