I gave her bed linen (that) I had had embroidered by a little old lady

Touse

Member
Dutch
“I gave her bedlinnen (that) I had embroidered by a little old lady from the other side of town.”

I would appreciate some help in translating this had-construction in English. Would I be correct in saying that this is some sort of passive construction?

My attempt:
Le ho dato delle lenzuola che erano state ricamate da una vechietta dell’altra parte della città.

But I know this isn’t quite right. If you translate that sentence back to English you get “[…] sheets that were embroidered by […]” and I want to explicitly express that it was the subject (the"I") who gave the order to have the bedlinnen embroidered.

Best wishes for the New Year to all!
Touse
 
  • Memimao

    Senior Member
    United Kingdom English
    “I gave her bedlinnen (that) I had had embroidered by a little old lady from the other side of town.”

    I would appreciate some help in translating this had-construction in English. Would I be correct in saying that this is some sort of passive construction?

    My attempt:
    Le ho dato delle lenzuola che erano state ricamate da una vechietta dell’altra parte della città.

    But I know this isn’t quite right. If you translate that sentence back to English you get “[…] sheets that were embroidered by […]” and I want to explicitly express that it was the subject (the"I") who gave the order to have the bedlinnen embroidered.

    Best wishes for the New Year to all!
    Touse
    In English it's called causative (cause something to be done, by others)

    My try in Italian:

    Le diedi delle lenzuola che avevo fatto ricamare da parte di una vecchia signora dall'altra parte della città.

    Natives will do better;)
     

    Touse

    Member
    Dutch
    Thank you, Memimao! Causitive, noted!!

    You're quite right, DesertCat!

    Grazie a te, Salegrosso! I take it then that vechietta doesn't necessarliy have a pejoritive connotation?
     

    merse0

    Senior Member
    Italy - Italian
    Usually we use "vecchietta" for a nice, cute, old lady.
    "Vecchiaccia" has definitely a negative meaning.
     

    baldpate

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    I know that "lenzuolo" means "sheet", but "bed linen" is a little more general: it includes sheets, pillow cases, and duvet covers.

    Does "lenzuola" in the plural also extend to pillow cases and duvet covers? Alternatively, could one say "biancheria da letto"?
     

    Fossifoco

    Senior Member
    Italy Italian
    I know that "lenzuolo" means "sheet", but "bed linen" is a little more general: it includes sheets, pillow cases, and duvet covers.

    Does "lenzuola" in the plural also extend to pillow cases and duvet covers? Alternatively, could one say "biancheria da letto"?
    You are right, biancheria da letto includes all.

    When I say lenzuola I simply refer to "sheets", although the expression cambiare le lenzuola refers to sheets, pillow cases & duvet covers.

    Sogni d'oro!!!
     

    Paulfromitaly

    MODerator
    Italian
    I know that "lenzuolo" means "sheet", but "bed linen" is a little more general: it includes sheets, pillow cases, and duvet covers.

    Does "lenzuola" in the plural also extend to pillow cases and duvet covers? Alternatively, could one say "biancheria da letto"?
    Nope, lenzuola means sheets, for the whole set we would say "corredo da letto" or something like that..(I'm sure some ladies will correct me on this..;))
     

    marziotta

    New Member
    I'd say

    "Le ho dato della biancheria che avevo fatto ricamare da una vecchietta che abita/sta/abitava/stava dall'altra parte della città"

    or

    "Le diedi della biancheria che..."

    Probably in the context it is clear that the "biancheria" is for the bed. "Biancheria da letto" sounds a bit too innatural, in a normal speech.
     
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