no Greek word for too late, too much, too old, too far

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corneliusgregor

New Member
German
Hi all,

how and can it really be that in the Greek language there is no unambiguous expression to say that something is too much of something, as in too much, too late, too old, too far, too loud etc. pp.

Greek always goes for POLY. poly agra, poly palio, poly makria, poly thinata which however can well mean "too" but at the same time and literally rather translates into "very".

I find it very unusual that there is no unambiguous word for "too" but it always has to be derived form the context of things.

Am I wrong on this?

Efxaristw
Gregor
 
  • Rallino

    Moderatoúrkos
    Turkish
    You can use para together wth poly, no?
    Αυτό είναι πάρα πολύ ακριβό. (Afto einai para poly akrivo) - It's too expensive.

    You can also say panakrivo, but I'm not sure if pan- can be used with every adjective. Maybe native speakers can shed a light on that.
     

    corneliusgregor

    New Member
    German
    Thanks! But para literally also translates into very very or very much in most contexts. Efxaristw para poli = Thank you very much.
    Fonakse para poli for example would rather mean he screamed very much but not he screamed to much.

    Pan- works well but I am not sure either if it works with any adjective? So maybe a native speaker can help as suggested be Rallino
     

    Acestor

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Gregor is quite right. The negative sense of 'too' (it's too late = it's so late that you cannot do anything about it) cannot be brought out in Greek unless the phrase is in context (e.g. Είναι πολύ αργά για να κάνουμε κάτι γι' αυτό). Or we go for half measures (πάρα πολύ or υπερβολικά), probably with the right tone in our voice that would denote the negativity missing in the syntax. :)
     

    Eltheza

    Senior Member
    English - England (Midlands)
    Absolutely agree with the above!

    I used to teach English to brilliant young Greek people in Athens, who would often say or write, "There were too many people at the party" when what they meant was, "There were very many/lots of people at the party" - no negative implication!

    I tried to instil the idea that 'too many' = bad; 'very many' = good (that's your judgment).

    With Greek-speaking friends, the 'too many' concept would be expressed by 'πάαααααααρα πολύ', rolling of the eyes, groaning κτλ, κτλ, κτλ!

    As Acestor says, it's all in the tone of voice and gestures:D!
     

    Perseas

    Senior Member
    Absolutely agree with the above!

    I used to teach English to brilliant young Greek people in Athens, who would often say or write, "There were too many people at the party" when what they meant was, "There were very many/lots of people at the party" - no negative implication!
    I can also imagine happening the opposite of it: saying e.g. "very late", when what they mean is "too late".:)
     
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