Hyphen Needed in English Sentence

Diana-S1

Diana-S1

I began working on Lesson 5.7, a lesson that continues the theme of connecting words -- little things that add challenge to learning the language. English also has little things that improve the flow of reading and add challenge to the language: hyphens. Lesson 5.7 has such a hyphen situation in an English translation. The first example is "C'est un très beau pull, fait à la main," with the English translation as "It's a very beautiful hand made sweater." In French we describe the situation in detail; we have a beautiful sweater that is made by hand. But in English we describe the situation very quickly by putting the adjectives one after the other before the noun. In this siuation, the little thing (a hyphen) is very handy and improves the sentence's readability. As the sentence now stands, the word "beautiful" is an adjective describing the noun: hand; and the word "made" is a past tense verb; the sentence makes no sense. Add a hyphen to create "hand-made." Now beautiful describes the sweater, as does the adjective hand-made. The sentence is easier to read and makes sense at first glance.
jason☺

jason☺

Agreed! It's a very beautiful hand-made sweater. That's perfect for English. But what about the French? I think the problem here may be that the phrase doesn't exist anywhere in that form. I'm no expert, so I can only take some examples from Google and hope that the people that type have a reasonable education level. Most people would say "C'est un très beau pull..." ...qui se marier avec tout. ...que tu as fait à la main. ...de très bonne qualité. With the original phrase, running the search, we get one result - Rocket French. Original: http://goo.gl/otDPKW (the two phrases were included separately in a single link) Based on Marie-Claire's suggestion below I created a separate link for what she considers the main point of the phrase. Fait à la main: http://goo.gl/5zDSwD My point was that Rocket French would do better to use well-known and verifiable sources for phrases: 1) to make it easier to translate (whether word-for-word or by writing in perfect English using the sense of the phrase) 2) to add credibility to their hard work There's nothing wrong with 1) writing a citation for a phrase, 2) giving the original (hopefully French) author credit for their work, and then 3) adding audio, video, games and other material around that citation. Cordialement, Jason
Marie-Claire-Riviere

Marie-Claire-Riviere

Bonjour, Thank you very much Diana, I will get on to fixing that straight away. It's nice to have constructive comments like these that improve our course and benefit everyone. In terms of the French, it is fine the way it is. It can be expressed in a variety of different ways but this is as good as any. I would advise avoiding Google in this way, or at least simply search 'fait à la main' as a set phrase for further examples. Also, you may drop the the 'à la' and say simply 'fait main' in some circumstances. Keep up the good work and keep the comments coming! - Marie-Claire

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