Proverb translation 2 (Mongols and horses)

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Zsuzsu

Senior Member
Hungarian
Hi,

another translation:

"Mongols are born on horse, grow up on horse, and die on horseback."

This sounds very clumsy but I don't have a clue how I could improve it... Could anyone help, please?
 
  • bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    While "horseback" is used correctly, you should use an article such as "a" with "horse."

    "Mongols are born, grow up on, and die on the back of a horse" or "their horses" would sound appropriately epigrammatic to me.
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    I would suggest The Mongol is born, grows old, and dies in the saddle:)

    (Zsu, I'm trying to make your proverbs sound like proverbs, rather than translations of proverbs).
     

    tpettit

    Senior Member
    Standard French
    While "horseback" is used correctly, you should use an article such as "a" with "horse."

    "Mongols are born, grow up on, and die on the back of a horse" or "their horses" would sound appropriately epigrammatic to me.
    I would either say "Mongols are born on, grow up on, and die on the back of a horse", or "Mongols are born, grow up, and die on the back of a horse"
    Omitting the "on" after the first verb and using it after the second one makes the sentence sound a bit odd. But I am no expert.
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    they often ride without a saddle
    Oops! I'd forgotten about that particular aspect of Mongolianness (I don't come across many Mongolians in my daily routine:D).
    In the saddle can, I feel, be used as a direct equivalent of on horseback, but if you want to avoid being accused of ignorance re Mongolian saddle-less-ness, stick with on horseback:)

    Question to Bibbles: Is there any particular reason you changed on horseback to on the back of a horse, Bibbles? That sounds very literal to me ...:confused:
     

    Nunty

    Senior Member
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    I'd like the rhythm of repetition, but that may be more a Hebrew characteristic than an English one:
    "Mongols are born on a horse, grow up on a horse, and die on the back of a horse."

    Can't you just hear the hoofbeats? Feel the rocking movement of the horse galloping?
     

    Nymeria

    Senior Member
    English - Barbadian/British/educated in US universities blend
    Or how about, "Mongols are born riding, live riding and die riding."

    Here, I am assuming that the natural assumption will be that they are riding horses and not bicycles... or the rails... ;)
     

    MrPedantic

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    It seems a pity to omit the Mongolian saddle.

    I would plagiarise two earlier versions (with apologies) and say:

    1. The Mongol is born, lives, and dies in the saddle.

    ("Growing up" doesn't seem a very proverbial concept, in English.)

    MrP
     
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