was

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27elephants

Member
English
what is the word "was" in french?

like : " When it was time to open his presents, the circular present was the first to be opened"

i think it is était but i am not sure can anyone help?
 
  • valy822

    Senior Member
    Italy- Italian
    27elephants said:
    what is the word "was" in french?

    like : " When it was time to open his presents, the circular present was the first to be opened"

    i think it is était but i am not sure can anyone help?
    It think in this case is "était" but not always.
    In English we say, I WAS, HE/SHE/IT WAS.
    In French we say, j'étais but il/elle était.
    To get more authoritative replies, wait for the natives of course.
    Valy
     

    27elephants

    Member
    English
    so would this be correct can you correct me if i am worng?

    " quand c'etai pour ouvrer le presentes, le circular presente etait le premier pour ouvrer"


    i think the sentence is wrong can somebody tell me where or how i messed up? please
     

    DearPrudence

    Dépêche Mod (AL mod)
    IdF
    French (lower Normandy)
    quand on en était à ouvrir les cadeaux, le (cadeau) circulaire fut le premier à être ouvert.

    Sorry, not really satisfied with what I wrote because actually I'm not very good at translating into French.
     

    valy822

    Senior Member
    Italy- Italian
    27elephants said:
    why was his message deleted?
    I'm a girl! :) well..just because I don't want to write silly things when there are natives more qualified than me!
    Anyway I wrote my translation but I don't know if it's correct:
    Quand il était temps d'ouvrir les cadeaux..."

    Valy
     

    Nanou

    Senior Member
    FRANCE - French
    27elephants said:
    so would this be correct can you correct me if i am worng?

    " quand c'etait pour ouvrir le cadeau, le circular ? presente était le premier pour ouvrir"


    i think the sentence is wrong can somebody tell me where or how i messed up? please

    I think we could help you more if you give us the whole sentence in english.
     

    Nanou

    Senior Member
    FRANCE - French
    Quand ce fut le moment d'ouvrir ses cadeaux, le paquet circular (?) fut le premier à être ouvert.

    I don't really understand circular. Does it mean the one he had in his hand by this time ??
     

    DearPrudence

    Dépêche Mod (AL mod)
    IdF
    French (lower Normandy)
    Just a thought but I have the impression that "il était temps" means something else.
    For instance, when someone is late, you say:
    "tu arrives seulement maintenant! Et bien, il était temps".

    Enfin, just my (very) personal opinion: je cherche juste la petite bête :D
     

    corrs

    Member
    French
    DearPrudence said:
    Just a thought but I have the impression that "il était temps" means something else.
    For instance, when someone is late, you say:
    "tu arrives seulement maintenant! Et bien, il était temps".

    Enfin, just my (very) personal opinion: je cherche juste la petite bête :D
    Avec "When" je pense que ca change un peu le sens non ;)?
     

    Gil

    Senior Member
    Français, Canada
    Autre option:
    Quand vint le temps d'ouvrir ses cadaux, il se lança sur le cadeau rond...
     

    Morphea

    Senior Member
    French, France
    Ok, the scientific in me just has to kick in:
    "en forme de cercle" and "rond" sound very flat to me... It depends on the gift of course, but wouldn't "sphérique" have a little more volume? :D

    27elephants, could you tell us what the circular gift is?
     

    Morphea

    Senior Member
    French, France
    So it DOES have a volume...
    Well, I would have used "spheric" even in English, so my translation probably isn't reliable, but I would use "sphérique". But, well, I'm a scientist.
     

    Gil

    Senior Member
    Français, Canada
    Et si le papier est un peu froissé, ça pourrait être buckminsterfullerien?;)
     

    anangelaway

    Senior Member
    French
    Morphea said:
    So it DOES have a volume...
    Well, I would have used "spheric" even in English, so my translation probably isn't reliable, but I would use "sphérique". But, well, I'm a scientist.
    Well! I'd like the scientist to explain to me how he would manage to make a stuffed elephant toy into something ''sphérique'', please...:D
     

    Gil

    Senior Member
    Français, Canada
    anangelaway said:
    Well! I'd like the scientist to explain to me how he would manage to make a stuffed elephant toy into something ''sphérique'', please...:D
    Après quelques jours de digestion dans le serpent de Saint-Exupéry:D
     

    williamc

    Senior Member
    england english
    We have no "spherical" objects in the house -
    only "round" ones.
    As I was saying - (comment dit cela en français) -
    only round ones.

    williamc
     

    xav

    Senior Member
    France
    1) Il faut bien le passé simple ici pour traduire "was", et non l'imparfait. A la rigueur, en style oral, le passé composé : "Quand le moment est venu..."
    2) Ce premier cadeau déballé, ce ne serait pas tout simplement le plus gros, le plus volumineux ?

    As I was saying
    = "Comme je disais" (and you can add, as a joke, "si justement")
    :)
     

    Morphea

    Senior Member
    French, France
    anangelaway said:
    Well! I'd like the scientist to explain to me how he would manage to make a stuffed elephant toy into something ''sphérique'', please...:D
    Well, first explain me how you can make a stuffed elephant toy into something "circular" (which is a word that still puzzles me when describing an elephant toy), and then I'll tell you how you can make it from "circular" to "sphérique"... :p

    I may be wrong, but "circular" sounds like it would rather fit a vinyl record, while "round/spherical" would rather fit a basket ball. At least in French "circulaire" describes something flat, while "sphérique" describes something with a volume, and "rond" can mean both. Or maybe that's just the sad result of years of maths and geometry.

    To williamc: you would have spherical objects in your house if you also had a mathematician in your house (and don't get me started on my tri-colored dodecahedron)

    Anyway, I think I'm getting a bit off topic here...
     

    anangelaway

    Senior Member
    French
    Morphea said:
    Well, first explain me how you can make a stuffed elephant toy into something "circular" (which is a word that still puzzles me when describing an elephant toy), and then I'll tell you how you can make it from "circular" to "sphérique"... :p

    I may be wrong, but "circular" sounds like it would rather fit a vinyl record, while "round/spherical" would rather fit a basket ball. At least in French "circulaire" describes something flat, while "sphérique" describes something with a volume, and "rond" can mean both. Or maybe that's just the sad result of years of maths and geometry.

    To williamc: you would have spherical objects in your house if you also had a mathematician in your house (and don't get me started on my tri-colored dodecahedron)

    Anyway, I think I'm getting a bit off topic here...
    voui! voui! Mais j'y ai refléchi, et je penses que tu vas utiliser une grande boîte à chapeau, plus grande que cet éléphant, n'est-ce pas!?:p

    I have used in my sentence, way before I knew it will be a stuffed elephant toy, the term ''en forme de cercle''. But I agree, it does not sound great, neither ''rond'' or ''circulaire''.
    So, you would translate it like: ''un cadeau sphérique'', is that correct?

    Bon, j'èspère que nous sommes au moins d'accord sur l'utilisation nécessaire du passé simple ici dans cette phrase!:)
     
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