1. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Does anybody speak french? google translate sucks

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Imaginarily, Sep 16, 2015.

    Hi everyone,

    I thought it would be fun for a character of mine to have a phrase-tattoo, because y'know, reasons, but then I decided it should be in French and ... I do not speak French at all.

    At first I thought Google's translate thinger would be useful, but it's not the right tool for when you just want to know how to convey a sentiment in another language, as opposed to "what is the word for refrigerator?"

    TL;DR - I need a human for this. The phrase I need is:

    Lost at Sea
    May He Rest in Peace
    As it would be on a tombstone. Pretty please? With extra suspension-of-disbelief on top?
     
  2. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    I hate to post off-topic, but if you cannot construct it, how will your readers read it? And if they do read it, are you going to then translate it for them?

    It may be simpler to write, "It read, in French, 'Lost at Sea May He Rest in Peace'".
     
  3. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Simpler to outright tell the readers what it says? Yes. Absolutely.
    A thing this character would ever do? No.

    It's meant to be a sneaky little plot device; the character is living in an English-speaking environment now, and the tattoo being hidden (on his back) is meant for it to raise questions. It's a reminder for him, not an advertisement for whoever may be looking at it. So, I feel like the best way to present it is to have it be encrypted like this. He's an onion, dammit, there are layers to be peeled!
     
  4. Shbooblie
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    Shbooblie Contributing Member

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    I think the google translate of the phrases are both correct from what I can remember of my GCSE French aaall those years ago :

    Disparu en mer
    Qu'il repose en paix

    They seem correct to me anyways. Can anyone better at French confirm/correct this?
     
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  5. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    I was told that "disparu" is more like "gone" like, having left a place, so I should use "perdu" as in "misplaced" (I think). And there is trouble conjugating "repose"... blegh.

    The best I could come up with (with help) was:

    Perdu en Mer
    Peut'il Reposer en Paix
    I have no idea how correct or butchered that may be. :bigeek:
     
  6. rainy_summerday
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    rainy_summerday Active Member

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    Perdu is more like having lost an object. I think Shbooblie is right. But it has been some time since I learned French.
    Disparu can be a euphemism for "dead", therefore it should be the right word. I think perdu can be used for a person that is thought to be dead, too. But it's more like when you send somebody into war and state in advance that he will be lost, that this person's fate is sealed.
     
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  7. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Well crap. So, which would it be, if the body was never found and the person is presumed dead?
     
  8. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    Perdu a la mer
    Qu'il peut resposer en paix

    There's a few accents on a few of the letters I can't do as I don't know the alt codes.
    There should be one on the a. Pretty sure it's er at the end of reposer and not an accented e.

    (Perdu here is quite correct, as people have LOST him to the sea)
    (peut here is the informal 'can', puisse is another option but its less personal)

    Source: 12 years of french school.
     
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  9. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    You are my hero. Thank you!!
     
  10. ManOrAstroMan
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    ManOrAstroMan Magical Space Detective Contributor

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    I think disparu is more contextually appropriate. Perdu implies carelessness or negligence.
    *I think.*

    Edit: or, never mind, because someone else answered more correctly while I was typing.
     
  11. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Also, @A.M.P. could you perhaps draw the accents and upload as an image so I can see? I can find them in the special characters thing for text after.
     
  12. rainy_summerday
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    rainy_summerday Active Member

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    @Imaginarily, the accent grave is meant. Perdu à la mer. I think there is only one missing accent. Can't spot any other.

    @A.M.P., Since you know a lot about French, how would you then describe the difference between perdu and disparu?
     
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  13. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Also, does capitalization have different rules in French (like German always capitalizes its nouns)? I am a detail-phile, I don't wanna have capital letters where a French-speaking person would be like :bigconfused:
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015
  14. rainy_summerday
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    You are in luck :) No, it doesn't. Like the other Romance languages (e.g. Spanish), names, places, abbreviations, etc. are capitalised, the rest is not. However, you might capitalise nouns etc. in titles.
     
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  15. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    So would it be safe to say that a tattoo like this would be up to the wearer whether or not to capitalize?
     
  16. rainy_summerday
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    rainy_summerday Active Member

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    I have no idea about "tattoo policies." I suppose you can do whatever you want. I bet there are lots of people out there who have "kanji" on their body which have no meaning at all. If you feel like capitalising some words, then do it. Otherwise don't. I doubt anybody will mind.
     
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  17. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Okie dokey. :D This has answered all of the questions I had about this particular detail. Thank you all so much :-D
     
  18. Iain Wood
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    Iain Wood Member

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    Hi Imageinarily..., you are sooooo right !

    Google is an excellent tool to get a basic understand about what the other has written, but it certainly can’t be counted on for publishing. (if you wish to maintain any credibility)

    Being a newbie here and using my computer 9/10s of the time, I decided to use my tablet yesterday evening to see if I had a reply to one of my posts. (I live in the French speaking south of Belgium)
    For some mysterious reason, my tablet automatically translated this forum from English to French and the result was, to say the least, extremely amusing ! I, Iain Wood, became Iain Bois and the remainder of the texts were just as comical !

    A hint:
    Despite speaking French for over 40 years, I rarely have the need to write..., as a consequence, my written French is very embarrassing !
    As such, (even in English) I never write directly on a forum; I always write what I have to say using Microsoft Word then transfer it to the relevant thread.
    In the meantime, when it comes to writing French, I ‘cheat’!

    Firstly, I always write what I have to say in English; I then pass it on to Google with the resulting translation pasted back onto the Word document. I then ‘select the text’ and click “French FRANCE.”* This corrects Google’s spelling and also has a go at correcting some of the grammar.

    Note: I said, “has a go”! With French being an extremely difficult language, there are still many errors to be ironed out.
    In my case, I call for my wife to do the final correction..., lol ! And every time, she’ll always side-look me, then, exhaling through the teeth, she’ll mutter “vache Espagnole”!

    My suggestion is to surf the Internet and join a French (France) forum like this one. You can then ask them, to correct your text. And you could perhaps corrcet their, English texts !


    * Anecdote: In the evenings with my wife constantly watching the monotonous and story-predictable soaps, (something I can’t stand) I open my tablet for the BBC news or eventually watch a YouTube film.
    Sometimes, when no soaps are available, she may watch a French film and at times, the films are Canadian. When this is the case, the film, more often than not, is subtitled in French to allow the French to follow the story. (a bit like ‘Oxford English’ speakers trying to understand Glaswegian)
    Lol..., try figuring that out !

    As such, when using the Microsoft Word 'language,' (unless you’re Canadian) always use ‘French FRANCE.’


    Kind Regards..., Iain.
     
  19. Iain Wood
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    Iain Wood Member

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    PS Nearly all French headstone inscriptions simply use R.I.P. Not quite Franglais..., ‘Requiescat in pace.’
     
  20. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Could you translate, then?

    Lost at sea
    May he rest in peace​

    The tattoo is meant to mimic a headstone inscription. I dunno if I mentioned that already.

    You seem to have the most knowledge on this topic so far, and I am striving for accuracy so hard it hurts.
     
  21. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Let me ask my brother-in-law. He was raised in France and speaks native French.

    eta: have asked him on facebook. waiting for a reply!
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2015
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  22. Iain Wood
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    Iain Wood Member

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  23. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    So this is what he and another guy who lives in France said:

    Perdu en mer.
    Puisse-t'il reposer en paix.
     
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  24. Imaginarily
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    Imaginarily Disparu en Mer Contributor

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    Thank you, thank you, thank you. *hugs until there's no air left*

    Oh, but, @Iain Wood 's links look so legit. I don't know which to use! :bigeek:
     
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  25. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    Perdu en mer
    Qu'il puisse reposer en paix.
    Qu'il repose en paix.
    Puisse-t'il reposer en paix. (more archaic or formal)



    Source: I live there.
     

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