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Unpublishing idioms

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lt
Administrator
<a href="/en/translator/lt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1">lt</a>
Joined: 27.05.2008
Pending moderation

We've been unpublishing one-word entries in the "Idioms" section lately, which are not idioms by definition. Most of them were added before we changed our rules and limited "Phrases" section to idioms only.
Our notifications are not designed for unpublished idioms, we apologize for possible misunderstanding.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/tanyas2882" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1205675">tanyas2882</a>
Joined: 22.04.2014

Oh, Gott sei dank! Before now these words with figurative meanings like “достал” fell out in the footnotes, where they are in its literal meaning.

Ironic Iron ֍ The Black Sun
<a href="/en/translator/st-sol" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1315904">St. Sol</a>
Joined: 20.11.2016

Interesting: all my double word idiomatic entries (like screw-ball, head-long, etc.) were deleted but many more single word entries by other members remain untouched. Strange? Not at all.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/blacksea4ever" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1390089">BlackSea4ever</a>
Joined: 19.07.2018

Sol, with due respect, why don't you ask mods why idioms were removed and by whom. I have to tell you that I'd be shocked if Sandring would engage in this - I think she values language over the squabbles. Your idioms are constant source of enjoyment and you should expect that your questions are answered.

Ironic Iron ֍ The Black Sun
<a href="/en/translator/st-sol" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1315904">St. Sol</a>
Joined: 20.11.2016

Dear D, please recall that I am blacklisted by the mods for daring to note and suggesting to correct some glaring errors, misleading misunderstandings and mistranslations in some of their works (how could I?), that I lost the editor status for that, despite being instrumental in designing the current tag system, etc. As for sandring: she did it before (that was my direct experience) and she would do it again: some people are like that. So sad.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/sandring" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1263066">sandring</a>
Joined: 18.10.2015

Sol, the Admins know that I've never mentioned your name to them. Think how stupid your allegations look in their eyes. And one more thing. Your obsession with me is getting ridiculous, even mama started asking questions. Regular smile

Back to business. The fact that one-word entries (including some of mine) have been unpublished is an absolutely correct and linguistically justified move. They are not idioms but slang/colloquial meanings to the basic word. It means we should have two sections - one for idioms, the other for colloquialisms. I believe we need a board of editors to work out certain routines for both. But it's for the editors' corner to discuss. I'm ready to work on this board and will come up with my suggestions in the editor's room.

Senior Member
<a href="/en/translator/georgee" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1373012">georgee</a>
Joined: 20.02.2018

Now I understand what the problem was. I forgot that I send this idioms in the past, and now the reaction came. :-)

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/asm" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1313317">A.S.M</a>
Joined: 31.10.2016

Ст. Сол я не знаю вашего имени, потому к вам так и обращаюсь. Мои идиомы тоже удалили так вот когда я их публиковал, Надя мне написала и сказала, что половина опубликованных мной идиом не является таковыми и их могут удалить. Это не она. А я добавлял сюда идиомы, чтобы все кто изучают русский язык смогли усовершенствовать свои знания в нём. Простой пример во французском даже не представляю сколько идиом в каждом переводе всё новые и новые открываю для себя, которые я не знаю. Потому и переводы "так себе" Я считаю чем больше идиом тем лучше и это ПОДАРОК тем кто изучает языки.

Ironic Iron ֍ The Black Sun
<a href="/en/translator/st-sol" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1315904">St. Sol</a>
Joined: 20.11.2016

And yet, after all the devastation and unpublishing dozens of useful contributions, entries such as this:
In the end: https://lyricstranslate.com/en/end-0#n1967555
still stand with all its equivalents. If these are idioms, then I am the queen of England. ROFL

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/jadis" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1387945">Jadis</a>
Joined: 01.07.2018

I think I will not publish idioms any more, the rules are too messy and unclear, and I don't like to see my work destroyed.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/blacksea4ever" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1390089">BlackSea4ever</a>
Joined: 19.07.2018

Except you, Jadis and Sol, need to realize that your idioms were invaluable. It was a mistake to delete them instead of reclassifying as suggested earlier.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/blacksea4ever" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1390089">BlackSea4ever</a>
Joined: 19.07.2018

Lol, it has 3 words - they didn't get to it yet

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

Well, they unpublished a five word idiom today and then they tell me that it's because it is a one word idiom. Not very clever.

There doesn't seem to be any point in publishing Gaelic (whether Irish or Scottish) idioms as they've unpublished two of them today, one of five words and the other of three, and when I ask why they just refer me to this thread supposedly about single word idioms and hence totally irrelevant to thse two idioms. So maybe I just won't bother any more.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/blacksea4ever" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1390089">BlackSea4ever</a>
Joined: 19.07.2018

No, please! It is obvious that some issue exists. For if you all stop adding idioms and colloquialisms, it will be so much worse. I think mods/editors need to pause and consider a better action plan taking in account yours, Jadis, Sol's comments!

Moderator sapiens sapiens
<a href="/en/translator/knee427" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1110108">Alma Barroca</a>
Joined: 05.04.2012
BlackSea4ever escribió:

Sol, with due respect, why don't you ask mods why idioms were removed and by whom. I have to tell you that I'd be shocked if Sandring would engage in this - I think she values language over the squabbles. Your idioms are constant source of enjoyment and you should expect that your questions are answered.

Just to make things clear: no Mod unpublished any idiom. It was an action performed by the Admins. If anyone has anything to say against it, this shall only concern LT, not us.

Ironic Iron ֍ The Black Sun
<a href="/en/translator/st-sol" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1315904">St. Sol</a>
Joined: 20.11.2016

In addition, they are keeping the Russian "Ну-ну" (LOL), but when several months back I tried to post "Да ну" and "Ну да" expressions and explain the (enormous) difference between them, all of them were deleted. If I remember correctly, the justification went something like this: "We are not linguists, but these don't look like idioms." LOL

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/joyce-su" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1375920">Joyce Su</a>
Joined: 17.03.2018

I think there are a lot of misunderstanding between adding idioms and explanations. In Chinese idioms, I saw that there are many phrases just for explanations of English idioms, but not Chinese idioms.

It's hard to say how many words could combine a idiom. Native speakers are more easily to clarify what the idioms or phrases are. But we have to add them in the right way to make sense for the idioms.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/blacksea4ever" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1390089">BlackSea4ever</a>
Joined: 19.07.2018

My mistake. I saw you liking the initial post and made an incorrect assumption. But, I don't think it's about blaming, but how to better address the purge.

Senior Member
<a href="/en/translator/breezyday" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1394713">BreezyDay</a>
Joined: 31.08.2018

To your point, with foresight, it would have been great if these items had been transfered rather than deleted. (Personally, I was not affected very much.)

lt
Administrator
<a href="/en/translator/lt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1">lt</a>
Joined: 27.05.2008

[@St. Sol] "In the end" and "Ну-ну" have been unpublished. If you run into other phrases that are not idioms, please report them with "Not an idiom" button.

[@michealt] "Béal faoi; droim ar ais." was not an idiom, but an explanation added to "bunoscionn", which did not look like an idiom.

Our next step will be merging idioms, like "That takes the cake!" and "that takes the cake."
As a result, some duplicates will be unpublished.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/sandring" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1263066">sandring</a>
Joined: 18.10.2015

I think that most one-word entries can be restored in a new "Colloquial Expressions" section. We can't afford to lose them.

Editor Absolute Amateur
<a href="/en/translator/annabellanna" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1240490">annabellanna</a>
Joined: 27.03.2015

Hi everyone. I try to resume what happened. Few days ago, LT adm wrote me that a couple of my idioms had been deleted. I ask the why and they replied with a link:
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/forum/updates/unpublishing-idioms
I read it. Here are the following messages between me and Lt:"ANNA: So I realize that for LT doesn't exist any one/two words idiom. Are these the new rules of LT? it's quite funny, I guess, to rate an idiom according its length! So I can add "non sono mica noccioline!"(=they are  but strands of hair!) instead of "mica noccioline"( = but strands of hair) and it would be accepted? I'll do this way, even if it seems a quite strange way to assess the idioms. LT ADM: These rules have been implemented a while (more than a year) ago, and there's a definition of what an idiom is (a group of words) You're welcome to add idioms that qualify! Thanks for understanding. ANNA: I notice about this new rule only thanks to the conversation I read between users. Anyway, "a group of words" could be also a two-words group. And, in my opinion, the more an idiom is short , the more could be found in a text. I'll give you an example: if I add the idiom " a memoria"("by heart", one of that you deleted) it automatically will be signaled as an idiom in the phrase "imparare a memoria"(to learn by heart),as well as in "sapere a memoria"(to know by heart) and in "recitare a memoria" (recite from memory) too. The first one had been deleted for to be too short. So now you need three differents idioms(sapere/imparare/recitare a memoria) to stress this idiom in a text(this is the actual situation). It doesn't seem a good idea. Usually we go from general to peculiar. And a definition is the more comprehensive the more is general and can fit to a large number of cases. This is no more than my opinion, anyway."
After about an hour, the idioms that LT ADM had deleted to me had increased to six, and I can't understand the why: these last ones were long enough.... In my opinion, when somebody takes initiatives alike, It should be kind at least they gave some explanation about. I am asking where these "new rules" about idioms are, so maybe I'll understand my errors. Can you help me to understand? What do you think about?

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

In that case, I'll start again either from the Scottish idiom "bun os cionn" or from the Irish idiom "Béal faoi; droim air ais" and leave out the extra interpretations that Irish "bunoscionn" has aquired. Of course that will not be easy, so maybe I wont bother.

Moderator and Scholar of a Dark Age
<a href="/en/translator/sciera" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1077079">Sciera</a>
Joined: 16.02.2011

What's the current definition for idiom?
A phrase that means something else that than its parts would mean on their own?
Perhaps you could add a definition somewhere.

Also, is there a way to edit explanations?
This one is wrongly marked as Middle High German (it's modern German) but I see no way to correct it:
https://lyricstranslate.com/en/eine-wei%C3%9Fe-weste-haben#n1699539

lt
Administrator
<a href="/en/translator/lt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1">lt</a>
Joined: 27.05.2008

"Idiom" explanation can be found here https://lyricstranslate.com/en/add/phrases :
"Idiom is a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not deducible from those of the individual words."

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/sandring" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1263066">sandring</a>
Joined: 18.10.2015
Quote:

if I add the idiom " a memoria"("by heart", one of that you deleted) it automatically will be signaled as an idiom in the phrase "imparare a memoria"(to learn by heart),as well as in "sapere a memoria"(to know by heart) and in "recitare a memoria" (recite from memory) too. The first one had been deleted for to be too short.

Annabellanna, "a memoria" isn't an idiom because it retains its dictionary meaning. What is an idiom is "by heart" (two words - prep+noun) The definition of "heart" has no implication of memorizing. It works only for this collocation. On the other hand a two word entry may not be an idiom like "a black out" It's a noun formed from a phrasal verb. One word (even hyphonated) can't be an idiom. It's one of the meanings of a word itself even if you can't find it in a dictionary (colloquial, dialectic, slanguish)

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/sandring" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1263066">sandring</a>
Joined: 18.10.2015

Sol, I'm a linguist, so I'll tell you that "Ну-ну", "Да ну" are interjections, they have nothing to do with idioms. LOL

Moderator and Scholar of a Dark Age
<a href="/en/translator/sciera" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1077079">Sciera</a>
Joined: 16.02.2011
lt escribió:

"Idiom" explanation can be found here https://lyricstranslate.com/en/add/phrases :
"Idiom is a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not deducible from those of the individual words."

Thanks, that's great!

Well, I still can think of ambiguous cases where one cannot say where something is one word or more. For example, in English "to step up for" means "to defend" and that meaning can't really be deduced from the meaning of the parts.
If one counts it as several words it's an idiom by that definition, even though we might not want to count it as such.
But I doubt this will be a frequent issue.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/sandring" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1263066">sandring</a>
Joined: 18.10.2015

To step up for, Sierra, is a phrasal verb. Prepositions may change the initial meaning. I teach Phrasal Verbs as a separate two-year course.

Moderator and Scholar of a Dark Age
<a href="/en/translator/sciera" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1077079">Sciera</a>
Joined: 16.02.2011
sandring escribió:

To step up for, Sierra, is a phrasal verb. Prepositions may change the initial meaning. I teach Phrasal Verbs as a separate two-year course.

Yes, I know it's a phrasal verb - but us linguists don't even have one standardized definition of what is a word, one could argue that phrasal verbs consist of two words as easily as one could argue that they consist of one word.
And since the definition of idiom here uses the term word without defining it, it's ambiguous.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/igeethecat" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1365086">Igeethecat</a>
Joined: 16.12.2017

Ok, I just reported a handful of “idioms” as “not idioms”, what will be an outcome? Will I get a receipt when they are unpublished? Regular smile

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/jadis" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1387945">Jadis</a>
Joined: 01.07.2018

One of the worse problems, IMO, is that the same idioms or expressions can be found at different places, sometimes in the same languages, sometimes in different ones, so if you publish an idiom in good faith somewhere, it has good chances to be erased because it's a duplicate... even if your explanation is better than the remaining one. And it's quite difficult and time-consuming to conduct an inquiry every time in order to know whether there is already something alike somewhere, or not.

Senior Member
<a href="/en/translator/israelwu" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1420592">IsraelWu</a>
Joined: 04.05.2019

Excuse me, I am not a linguist and this is probably a reason I don't understand. Isn't "a memoria" an adverb, not an idiom ? Or why aren't all adverbs automatically idioms ? I could learn quickly, slowly, easily, by heart or almost by heart (you know - stuttering a bit). Would "almost by heart" be an idiom too? It seems to me it's an adverb unique to each language,nothing more. It's a normal part of main stream language, not dialect, criminal class slang or youth of certain age slang "conquering" everyday language or having an additional,different meaning. BTW: In Hebrew its three words relating it to your mouth (not heart or memory) which does the work. By now it was shortened to a single 3-letter word composed of the initial letters of the original words. So was it an idiom which lost it's title just when it started to be more difficult for foreigners ? In Russian they have one word which is literally a fusion (concatenation) of 3 short words which, exactly like in Hebrew, assign it to the mouth bypassing memory or heart. So is it a single word or three ? Why instead of bitching here won't you all professionals define what you want and make a common session with IT people ? Don't take me wrong but IT people are "The GOD". We, in concentric steps are minor (and more minor and...) advisory gods but they do take us into consideration.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

Most of the professional linguists I'm acquainted with deprecate the term "phrasal verb" and suggest that it's misleading jargon (or sometimes deprecate it yet more strongly) when used to describe anything in English grammar/syntax. Personally I still use the term sometimes (rarely) but avoid it when talking to professional linguists.
Besides, if "step up" is a phrasal verb, what is "step up for"? A phrasal phrasal verb? I reckon it's an idiom. Or is "up" an adverb which can be inserted between the components of a phrasal verb? Generally we quite happily insert adverbs between components of a verb when it's built from an auxiliary plus the base verb, but then is "step for" a phrasal verb without that insert? My answer is "no", which surely prevents "step up for" from being a phrasal verb, and that's whi I reckon it's an idiom.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

Israel, I think the trap that some people are falling into is to imagine that beinng an idiom is preserved by translation. But something that is an idiom in English (learn by heart) becomes "imparare a memoria" im Italian which means the same but is not an idiom because it is literally "learn in memory" and the words in "imparare a memoria" do make it absolutely clear what the three word phrase means. Similarly "by heart" is an idiom because it's meaning is not constructed from the meanings of the two individual words, but "a memoria" is not an idiom because it's meaning is exactly clear from the normal meanings of the two individual words. In other words, the property of being an idiom is often NOT preserved in translation.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

And this is going to get worse and worse now that the desire for larger numbers of words has been allowed to override the common sense approach of providing the core of an idiom without extraneous garbage. Do we have to have "learns by heart" and "learn by heart" and "learnt by heart" and "learning by heart" as four separate English idioms instead of just "by heart" as a single idiom because someone has decided that making it harder to find the appropriate idiom and wasting space in the LT idiom store is more sensible that having the two word core element of those four conjugated versions of that single idiom? and do we want to treat "know by heart", "knew by heart", and "knows by heart" and "knowing by heart" and "known by heart" as another five idioms, so that we have a total of 9 idioms when in reality they are all different uses of the single idiom "by heart".
The current policy on idioms seems to be blind irrational stupidity. I wish editors and moderators and administrators would think seriously about building a decent properly constructed idiom store instead of introducing rules that appear to be designed to ensure that we never get one.

Senior Member
<a href="/en/translator/israelwu" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1420592">IsraelWu</a>
Joined: 04.05.2019

Tom,
It goes without saying you can't translate idiom literally (this is what makes it an idiom, right ?) . If you are lucky (or within the same family of languages) you have something equivalent, even perhaps an equivalent idiom. That's exactly what I said: "a memoria" defines a verb "to learn". From what I understand it's simply an adverb. Now, in Hebrew and Russian you learn "by mouth" not heart. It's the mouth which will give the final recitation of the poem. It's more a question of understanding the processes of learning as corresponding to humanity's time flow or stressing relative importance of organs taking part in learning in each culture. In Hebrew it's at least 17 centuries old, how come the Russians got it I wouldn't know. If you didn't know about the part of memory in learning would you accept that in Hebrew/Russian it's only an adverb (or is it an idiom because they and the English didn't know about the function of memory in learning )? Now we come to English: "by heart" seems like an idiom. Still, usually you can put an idiom in one unique context (or a very narrow family of similar situations)
Seems to me that "by heart" can be used to learn something in some specific way/method. It defines "to learn" or to "play"/reproduce your knowledge back. I would see in it as an adverb not a true idiom. I could recite a poem by heart, I could walk a country track by heart (after walking it a 100 times or studying it for two hours on a topographic map). If "a memoria" is adverb so is "by heart" and vice versa. It just depends what organ/faculty you chose when creating the language (and where do you put Hebrew/Russian "by mouth"). You learn adverbs of each language, how is "by heart" as a "complex" adverb different from "slowly". In my eyes they all are adverbs. You want - you treat "by heart" as a glorified adverb - an idiom. You are the authority both in linguistics and in English. If there is no way to go around it I"ll just give up it's not my field.

Editor
<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

Well, I would probably guess at the meaning of the Russian "learn by mouth" meaning what it does because I'm happy with "air mo theangaidh" ("on my tongue") as that's the equivalent idiom in gàidhlig. Of course there's the problem that "barr na teangaidh" - "the top of the tongue" means extemporaneous, ad hoc, almost the opposite of "by heart". But none of that's really relevant, is it? Equally, a Frenchman who had studied Middle French and Old French might not be troubled by the English, as English acquired this expression originally from French - probably from Middle French "par cuer" but could have been Old French some time after the Norman conquest of England, maybe about 1200 AD - Middle French is more likely as the earliest recorded use of "by herte" in English is from the late 14th century (in the Middle English sentence "He was so myȝty of mynde þat he rehersed two þowsand names arewe by herte.").

The point is that the definition of "idiom" is a phrase that means something that can't be deduced from the main meaning of each word in it - ie it can't be understood and translated by someone who hasn't already learnt the idiomatic meanings of the words. A table of idioms is useful because the typical vocabulary of a learner of a new language is limited to the main meanings of the words. If all learners of English had access to the OED they could look up "heart" and then they could discover this use of the word "heart" by wading through the approx 16,500 words of text that come before this use in the entry for "heart" as a noun (more easily if the form they access it in is easily searchable, of course). But all learners having access to that dictionary is rather unlikely to happen. The same presumably applies for other languages - but French for example doesn't do too well on idioms in TLF (expressio.fr partly makes up for it, but its search feature is very poor) - at least TLF (atif.atilf.fr) and expressio.fr are freely available online and TLF provides search for each individual word while expressio is trying to get its users to contribute idiom translations (and some of those are good, others less so).
Often something that's an idiom in one language translates to a different idiom in another. That isn't a problem. The individual words may have different primary meanings, but so what? The translation is about getting the sense of the thing, not the details of how that sense is built. ANd if the sense in the translated version is derived from the senses of its individual words, that translation is not an idiom but should probablu be held by the idiom store as an explantion of the idiom it translates.

So the idiom store should link idioms in any language to other idioms (whether in the same or different languages) which have the same meaning. ANd to explanations of the idiom for languages for which it doesn't hold any equivalent idiom. This of course depends on the store allowing users to insert and link idioms and explanations in all languages. Experienced translators should keep the idiom store up to date, so that it can be useful to less experienced translators.

I'm saying all this from the point of view of a translator, not from the point of view of a linguist (except that I use the definition of "an idiom" that the linguists generally recommend). I'm not a linguist, and never have been (apart from trying to help people learn some gàidhlig) - I've been a mathematician, a computer scientist, and an engineer and the nearest I ever got to being a linguist was writing a thesis on semantics for my mathematical logic reserch degree - but not semantics of a natural language, the semantics of a class of mathematical logic languages.

Moderator sapiens sapiens
<a href="/en/translator/knee427" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1110108">Alma Barroca</a>
Joined: 05.04.2012

You do receive a notification telling you 'idiom (x) was unpublished'.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/igeethecat" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1365086">Igeethecat</a>
Joined: 16.12.2017

I am not talking about idioms I’d posted, but idioms I reported as “not idioms”

Moderator sapiens sapiens
<a href="/en/translator/knee427" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1110108">Alma Barroca</a>
Joined: 05.04.2012

I don't think so. Only whoever added the 'non-idiom' would receive the notification.

Super Member
<a href="/en/translator/igeethecat" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1365086">Igeethecat</a>
Joined: 16.12.2017
Moderator and Scholar of a Dark Age
<a href="/en/translator/sciera" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1077079">Sciera</a>
Joined: 16.02.2011
Igeethecat escribió:

Then what is the point of “This is not an idiom” button? In Russian we call it «мартышкин труд»

Well, informing the admins about it so that they'll unpublish it?

Senior Member
<a href="/en/translator/israelwu" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1420592">IsraelWu</a>
Joined: 04.05.2019

In Hebrew we say "it stands on the tip of my tongue" which means you know exactly what you want to say but forgot the right word, or you refer to some book, movie, author and forget the name. It could happen in your native language too. (BTW The answer is usually:"So spit it out"
It reminds me, I just saw a new translation from Hebrew ( prayer, psalm). In the translation the Lord is referred as an "examiner of Mind" . In Hebrew it's written Examiner of Kidneys. In other places it's written that god is "testing/checking kidneys and heart". This is what I mean that it depends on the state of our knowledge when creating language and "by heart" is not so much different from " a memoria" or "by mouth", except "a memoria" is the right one so you elevate the wrong ones to the rank of idiom.
Even here we have already kind of Idiom DB but it should be checked by the best and most experienced. Today an idiom could "remind me itself" but I think I would be afraid to use one I don't know without a quick research of my own, but it still is a help of a kind, channels you.
Your last paragraph reminded me that I used to have "a chip on my shoulder". Why people do link your erudition and intelligence to the quantity of natural languages you speak ? They always ignore ability of writing and/or even only reading programming languages. Even here they recognize fictitious languages like Klingon(ian?) but not Algol ( I'm sure somebody named it looking at the stars and I don't care what is the official explanation:-)

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<a href="/en/translator/sciera" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1077079">Sciera</a>
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IsraelWu escribió:

In Hebrew we say "it stands on the tip of my tongue" which means you know exactly what you want to say but forgot the right word, or you refer to some book, movie, author and forget the name. It could happen in your native language too. (BTW The answer is usually:"So spit it out"
It reminds me, I just saw a new translation from Hebrew ( prayer, psalm). In the translation the Lord is referred as an "examiner of Mind" . In Hebrew it's written Examiner of Kidneys. In other places it's written that god is "testing/checking kidneys and heart".

For your info - basically all those idioms also exist in German.

Quote:

Your last paragraph reminded me that I used to have "a chip on my shoulder". Why people do link your erudition and intelligence to the quantity of natural languages you speak ? They always ignore ability of writing and/or even only reading programming languages. Even here they recognize fictitious languages like Klingon(ian?) but not Algol ( I'm sure somebody named it looking at the stars and I don't care what is the official explanation:-)

Well once you can translate a song into a programming language we might add it - but considering that programming languages basically only consist of orders, assignment statements (x = y) and yes/no-questions, that might be fairly difficult Wink smile

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<a href="/en/translator/israelwu" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1420592">IsraelWu</a>
Joined: 04.05.2019

My "beef" is exactly this: we "punish" the true phenomenon " a memoria" as, simply, an adverb. We glorify other languages' mistakes as idioms just to contain them in our classifications. But I am not really fighting it, just underlining it, pointing it out. I don't think you can change it. As once my friend explained it to me:" You don't argue with a prerecorded phone answer, just let it be" :-).

About computer languages: You have languages dealing with artificial intelligence which could translate poetry, if not today then in near future ( today they are busy with more lucrative tasks). Even today I can translate /transform a program itself (like prose or free verse of Whitman) from one programming language to another (best within the same family of languages but possible across, just like poetry). And you have to acknowledge: there are programmers who are poets and programs which are pure poetry. Today you can have lists of words, dictionaries, data bases of words, idioms, ready prepared phrases,etc, etc.. , just use them. I am not going against the rules but GT translations can be done as you well know. We just rightly don't like them (for now). Just wait for the future...

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<a href="/en/translator/israelwu" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1420592">IsraelWu</a>
Joined: 04.05.2019

BTW: I just would like to to be sure: A group of words could be a single word (have single member) or perhaps even no word (AN EMPTY GROUP). I don't know exactly how would an empty group look (perhaps " " ) but for single word group take "chicken" or "zając" ( = hare in Polish, chicken in meaning, not contemporary I believe). Single word both and full blown idioms in my opinion. Nobody, not being English/Polish would guess what they mean.

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<a href="/en/translator/jadis" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1387945">Jadis</a>
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That remembers me that corned beef is also (ironically) called "smashed monkey". But in French we simply say "du singe" ("smashed" being implied). But if we follow the rules, this will probably be forbidden as an idiom, because it consists of only one significant word. So there will be no equivalent for "smashed monkey" or "corned beef" in French, although there is. And nobody will ever understand a French guy saying he opened "une boîte de singe" (a can of monkey).
BTW, "un singe" has also been used to call a "boss", although it's kind of old-fashioned by now. But only one word, so that's not an idiom, hence forbidden to explain the meaning.

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<a href="/en/translator/michaelna" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1257575">MichaelNa</a>
Joined: 29.08.2015

Perhaps in the future the powers that be will find the wisdom to realize that an idiom explanation in another language doesn’t have to be provided by constructing a whole phrase, sometimes a single word is more than sufficient.

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<a href="/en/translator/michealt" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1222532">michealt</a>
Joined: 11.10.2014

That stikes me as something that won't happen. The current idicoy of insisting that idoms use many words, not just one (where "not just one" has been implemented as "not less that three" according to what some LT members have told me) is utterly stupid, pure nomsense, but it's been made clear that it isn't going to change - or so mambers have been saying.

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<a href="/en/translator/michaelna" class="userpopupinfo username" rel="user1257575">MichaelNa</a>
Joined: 29.08.2015

My comment was mainly concerned with “explanation of an idiom in another language”. For example, the English idiom “Cut it out!” in Italian it’s simply “Finiscila!” Someone decided to delete “finiscila” as an explanation for “cut it out”. Who decided that an explanation of an idiom in another language needs to be done with another idiom?

However, I do agree that idioms are not necessarily made of a minimum of three words. Here is a couple of proofs: “Silver fox”, “Cry wolf”, “Red tape”, “Yellow belly”.

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