Saying Dead

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Orleander, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. EmmZ It's an animal thing Registered Senior Member

    ate me
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  3. Myles Registered Senior Member

    France. Il'y'a is the French equivalent of Spanish " Hay" = there is
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  5. Vkothii Banned Banned

    Qu'est-ce que c'est, que ce qu' ça?
    There's no equivalence, only (rough) translation. What is that (that is) what that is, what that which this (is)?

    But recalling some of my all too brief education in French, I know (je sais) another (un autre) way to say "dead" - mort.

    il est mort = he/it is dead
    elle est mort = she is dead
    entraîner la mort de = be the death of

    You could say: "il a mort", but you'd probably get strange looks from a French person, it means "he/it has death".
    Il'y'a mort means: "he/it has death there". You understand that 'y' implies a locative (here/there), and associates with nouns and pronouns...?
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2008
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  7. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    No. Il y'a is the French idiom equivalent to English "there is," Spanish hay, German es gibt, Italian c'e, etc. It's just as untranslatable as those, the literal meaning being "it there has." Il n'y'a pas [une chose] means "There is no... [something]." Il n'y'a pas encore is then highly idiomatic, meaning literally "there is no again, there is no further." It's not my best language, this may be the way the French say "there is no more."
    Qu'est-ce que c'est is another idiom that defies literal translation. Elision is so rampant in French that short sentences come out really short, so short that they'd be difficult to understand. "What is this" would literally be Qu-est ce, pronounced in one syllable with each word as a single phoneme, KES. So they expand it to five syllables, "Qu'est-ce que c'est que ça," literally "what is this which this is which that?" It is not only redundant but grammatically incorrect, but at least it can be understood.
    "For every epsilon, there is a delta." Perhaps he is our delta.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    That's not right either but it's understandable. "What is [something]" is qu'est-ce que c'est que... [quelque chose]. Qu'est-ce que c'est qu'une fraise? = "What is a strawberry?"
    You haven't recalled enough of your lessons.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    In French as in all the Romance languages, adjectives (including past participles) have to be declined for gender, so it's elle est morte.
    You've got the wrong word. "Death" is la morte.
    Since you spelled it wrong and got the past participle, I suppose that might be interpreted as "He has died," but they'd be more likely to use être with that past participle than avoir, so il est mort could be translated as both "he has died" and "he is dead," and a Frenchman would ask why we need two different sentences in English since they both express the same thought.
    Presumably you mean il y'a de la morte, "there is death." French grammar is full of spurious words whose only purpose is to help parse the sentence. It's very difficult to get right and I don't promise that mine is 100% correct but I'm pretty sure it's an improvement.
  8. Vkothii Banned Banned

    Hmm. I know that French has masculine and feminine nouns, and that Francais for "death" is a feminine noun, but I'm fairly sure the feminised spelling (morte) disappeared from the language a fair while ago. The modern form is "la mort".

    But if you can find an example of the modern use of mort/morte, that would be interesting.

    P.S. I'm not exactly aiming at linguistic precision here, just trying to show that there's a gap between most languages, so "usual" meaning is only meaningful in a certain context.
  9. Vkothii Banned Banned

    The Star Trek version:

    "It's worse than that, he's dead Jim!"

Share This Page