su di una strada

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theartichoke

Senior Member
English - Canada
Hello all,

I'm translating an excerpt from the story "Pane Nero" by Giovanni Verga (1883), in which a father has died, leaving his grown children in financial trouble. It's a poor, rural family. We're told that the children now have to each pensare ai casi propri, and the daughter is described this way: "Lucia rimaneva senza dote, su di una strada." It's clearly an idiomatic expression, but I can't for the life of me find out what it means: Lucia had no dowry, and was up on a street makes no sense whatsoever. I'm guessing it means something like "and [therefore] had no prospects," but I need to find out for sure!

I suspect there's a published translation available online for this story, but I don't want to look at it, as this is for an assignment, so hoping someone can help!
 
  • theartichoke

    Senior Member
    English - Canada
    Thanks, guys! I might use "no dowry and nowhere to go," as the father has only just died and the children are thinking about what's going to happen to them rather than already living it. ("Broke," by the way, Starless, not "broken" :))
     

    theartichoke

    Senior Member
    English - Canada
    I presented it as "nowhere to go" today, and got no objections from the (very critical) instructor, so you guys saved my bacon.:) As for "left high and dry" or "left in the lurch," both seem to attach blame to someone, whereas nobody here's attaching blame to the old father for being poor and dying. And I personally tend to use "stranded" only in the literal sense of being stranded somewhere, though I suppose it could be used metaphorically. At any rate, the folks who pointed out "in mezzo a una strada" gave me what I needed!
     
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