frei soviel wie frech, libertin

Löwenfrau

Senior Member
Brazilian Portuguese
Hello.
The question I have here concerns the usage of "soviel wie" in this particular case:


"Im D. W. mag man nachlesen, wie frei als Gegensatz von unfrei oder Knecht, von gefangen, von verheiratet oder auch nur verliebt, von geschlossen (freier Hals, freies Feld), von gehindert, von: der Sitte gemäß (frei soviel wie frech, libertin) sich entwickelt hat, wie es sich, schon im Mittelalter, in Verbindungen wie frank und frei, frank und froh zu der Vorstellung des Anmutigen, Heiteren umbog." Mauthner

My guess is that it means: "free in the sense of bold, libertine".

Just because it makes sense, but I've never actually seen this usage...
 
  • Frieder

    Senior Member
    Your guess is absolutely right.
    The phrase is "soviel bedeuten wie", only Mauthner omitted the "bedeuten".
    "frei(bedeutet) soviel wie frech, libertin"
    Perhaps he could have used a hyphen or a colon
    "frei - soviel wie ..."
    "frei: soviel wie ..."
    to make it clearer.
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    I have a problem with "frech" in this context. It looks like a change of meaning. So I am not sure about the meaning Mautner meant.
    "Frech" does not mean "der Sitte gemäß" nowadays. It is more the contrary. We say to children "Sei nicht so frech".

    I am afraid the translation is complicate here.

    "Frech" was mutig, and dreist. Today it is mostly dreist, unartig.


    See also Grimm:

    http://www.woerterbuchnetz.de/DWB?lemma=frei frei
    http://www.woerterbuchnetz.de/DWB?lemma=frech frech


    The problem, I see is should the translation reflect the meaning change or not.
     
    Last edited:

    Löwenfrau

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    Hi Hutschi,
    Is it possible that, in your remark, you didn't notice that Mauthner is in fact talking about an opposition?

    "Im D. W. mag man nachlesen, wie frei als Gegensatz von unfrei oder Knecht, von gefangen, von verheiratet oder auch nur verliebt, von geschlossen (freier Hals, freies Feld), von gehindert, von: der Sitte gemäß (frei soviel wie frech, libertin) sich entwickelt hat, wie es sich, schon im Mittelalter, in Verbindungen wie frank und frei, frank und froh zu der Vorstellung des Anmutigen, Heiteren umbog." Mauthner

    Taking that into account, all meanings you arose seem possible, but "unartig" seems to be the closest one. What you say?
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    Hi, indeed I missed this point of comparisons.
    "Soviel" becomes "ebensoviel", it is a comparison. It does not mean that they are equal but that they are equally in respect of value. (sowohl frei als auch frech)

    For me "frech" is a harsher form of "unartig" but concerning speech.

    "Frech" is mostly used for speech or speech like actions.

    But;

    We have two versions of "soviel"
    1. entsprechend (gleich)
    2. sowohl als auch.

    I am not sure yet.
     

    Löwenfrau

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    For me "frech" is a harsher form of "unartig" but concerning speech.

    "Frech" is mostly used for speech or speech like actions.
    A difference similar to that in English between "naughty" (more speech like) and "impertinent" (more likely to be found in a written text)?
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    I do not meen the usage but the meaning.

    unartig - I do things I should not do (as child) - example: ich bin frech - schmeiße Spielzeug rum, Ich spiele mit Essen


    Frech - I say things I should not say, like "you are silly" or (speechlike) I throw a book at your head.


    While "unartig" is mostly used for children, "frech" may also apply to adults.
     

    Löwenfrau

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    I understand. The adjectives "inconvenient" and "impertinent" seem to cover very well this meaning. Do you have any objection to that?
     

    Hutschi

    Senior Member
    I think "unartig" is naughty, but can be inconvenient in some context. ("In" includes the "un" part ...)

    Impertinent exists in German, too. It means "frech", so it fits. In German "impertinent" is even stronger than "frech".

    ---
    But I do not get the picture of Mauthners's sentence as a whole.

    free as much as impertinent
    free as well as impertinent
    ---
    or

    free in the sense of impertinent ?? (frei bedeutet soviel wie impertinent/frei im Sinne von impertinent.) ???
     

    Löwenfrau

    Senior Member
    Brazilian Portuguese
    I think that Mauthner's intention can only be understood if we look at "libertine". "Libertine" can be seen as an opposite of "der Sitte gemäß", and Mauthner mentions "frech" altogether with "libertine". Libertine is he who is not "der Sitte gemäß", who brakes with the traditions... In this sense, he is "free".

    EDIT: I was thinking, perhaps better than "impertinent" is "insolent" or "impudent"
     
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