perche à houblon

RedHat

New Member
English -- American
Hello,

Quick question-- there is a small part of this sentence that makes no sense to me, and I am guessing it is some poetic usage . . . maybe? Here is a section of the text for contextual help:

Baudelaire choisit l'image du Thyrse, le sceptre de Bacchus, pour illustrer cette conception d'une beauté unissant des éléments contradictoires: "un pur bâton, perche à houblon, tuteur de vigne, sec, dur et droit."


My own translation is like so: "Baudelaire chooses the image of Thyrsus, the scepter of Bacchus, to illustrate this idea of a unifying beauty of contradictory elements: "a pure staff, perches to hop, guardian of the vine, dry, hard and straight."


Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 
  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    Une perche à houblon is a hop-pole. These are the long poles that hold up hop-vines, thin, straight and strong. Usually it's vine tendrils that wind round the Thyrsis but in a beer-drinking country why not hops? (We are not talking Buddweiser here, but beers with flavour.)

    And in this context a tutelle isn't a guardian, once again it's the stick that holds a plant upright.
     

    Chris' Spokesperson

    Senior Member
    English - Ireland
    à can be used to describe the purpose of something as one unit too: tasse à tae - teacup.

    They're describing Bacchus' staff...which is a pole (perche)

    Edit - Keith got your back :)
     

    RedHat

    New Member
    English -- American
    Hey, thank you very much, Chris and Keith -- I was completely missing the idea. And Budweiser is pretty nasty to my palate anyway -- I'm more of a stout man myself! Once again, thank you for the help.
     
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