Ses cheveux se hérissaient en touffes

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by klakra, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. klakra New Member

    Hi everyone,

    I've been working on some translations for the last couple of hours and my brain starts going blank.. Would someone be willing to help me with this sentence, please?

    "Ses cheveux se hérissaient en touffes autour de ses grosses oreilles".

    Thank you in advance, any suggestions will be appreciated.
  2. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    What have you come up with so far? :)
  3. chambers Senior Member

    français - French
    His or her hirsute hair was curling around his or her big ears. ( I have a doubt, maybe I should say that the hair is curled around....).
  4. klakra New Member

    So far something terrible I'm not sure I want to go in public with :) I just plainly wrote:

    "His hair was standing on end around his big ears."
  5. Le Penseur

    Le Penseur Senior Member

    On the contrary, it's not half bad. In a sense it depends on how formal you want your translation to be, and of course the imperfect vs preterit translation might need to be adjusted, too (though a small issue). "His hair stood up around..." does sound slightly less 'spiky' than the French, though, which stresses it in the "en touffes" - so adding "stood up in tufts around his large ears" might be better. "Big", by the way, can easily sound a little childlike, which could, I suppose, add an endearing touch, but again the context might change it.
  6. Enquiring Mind

    Enquiring Mind Senior Member

    UK/Česká republika
    English - the Queen's
    In addition Le Penseur's thoughts in #5:
    His hair bristled out in clumps/tufts round his ...
    His hair stuck out/up in clumps/tufts ...
    His hair stood out in tufts/clumps ...

    It seems to me that "se hérissaient" must be descriptive, rather than a sudden action of the hair, if it's referring to a person.
  7. klakra New Member

    These are some really good ideas! I guess I'll try to combine them...
    Thank you all for racking your brains and finding time to reply. :)

    Have a nice day everyone!
  8. chambers Senior Member

    français - French
    Could we say : "His hair rolled up in clumps / tufts around his large ears".

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