Translation:The early bird catches the worm.
Because cheese is used to bait spring-loaded mouse traps. The first mouse goes for the cheese, but gets killed because it triggers the trap. This leaves the second mouse free to get the cheese. The implication is that it is not always a good thing to be the first to take advantage of a situation. For example, my grandfather once told me not to be the first person to move into the intersection on a green light just in case a vehicle from the cross direction failed to stop for the red light. This advice has saved me more than once. The adage that might fit this idea is, "Look before you leap".
Opportunity is never without risk. The entire idiom reminds the hearer to consider the risks and modulate their approach in order to get the most reward for the least risk. Consider the use of the word "early" contrasted to "second". The second bird is still going to get the worm. But perhaps the first bird is the one who encounters the cat, or the snake. It will probably escape, and it will warn the other birds of danger, but it is safer not to be near that situation at all. Alternatively, consider how people react to the first person to grab food at a party.
I translated the sentence as "the world belongs to she who wakes up early," not intending to make a point, but the defining mistake was that I put "she" instead of "he," which duolingo underlined. I am a little rusty with my French, but my guess is all single pronouns would be appropriate (at least grammatically) for the english translation.
I like how the literal sentence still makes sense. Like you could say "The world belongs to those who get up early" and people would still understand what you mean. In Swedish we say "morgonstund har guld i mund/mun" which basically translates into "the morning hour has gold in it's mouth".
Thanks, in German it is "Morgenstund(e) hat Gold im Mund". I never associated with "the early bird" although I used it in English. I agree with the literal sentence making more sense in French. There is a place were a culture meats language. Well, in English the distinction between culture and civilizaton is lost.
I don't think these idioms really mean the same thing. "Le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt" sounds more like "early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise". (Maybe that's an accepted answer?) "The early bird catches the worm" means you shouldn't delay - which could mean buying plane or concert tickets today instead of waiting a month, for example.
I disagree. Healthy wealthy and wise are specific things. Both the French phrase here and the "worm" allude to some thing that one wants to get, not necessarily traits or intelligence. Plus, both the French and the "early bird" saying have an implied loser, namely, the world does not belong to those who rise late, and the late bird gets no worm, whereas "healthy wealthy and wise" has less emphasis on one who rises late. The disparity in gravity of the sayings ("the world" feels much more important than "the worm") are consequences of how they are used in specific cases.
Although I can see the similarities between this English idiom and the French idiom, I still believe that the French idiom should be translated literally here. For my learning of the language and the meaning of words and the structure of sentences it would have been more useful to understand the structure and meaning of these words. The similarity to an English idiom is something that I could have established for myself later. I still love the fact that we have an idioms course though.
I get that the French phrase is used just like English speakers use "early bird/worm" but I would prefer if Duo also talked about the meaning in French. "The world belongs to those who get up early" makes perfect sense in English and even works as an idiom. It's great to learn the French parallels to English idioms, but please also help us understand what we are literally saying so that we can learn the language in a way that allows us to use it, not just get the right answers.
A different topic concerning this sentence: the French speaker says "a-par-ti-en'. I thought 3rd plural -ent was silent, so 'a-par-ti'. Perhaps it's the vowel before the ending, but isn't the pronunciation of (ils) oblient, 'ob-li'? Am I totally wrong, is Duo totally wrong, or is there an explanation in between?
If Duo is wrong, then I'll report a mistake of course, but I suspect there is an explanation, which I hope someone here can give to me. Thanks in advance.
Duo is correct about this one.
« appartient » comes from the verb « appartenir », meaning "to belong", and conjugates as an -ir verb. « appartient » is the 3rd singular, «appartiennent » is the 3rd plural. It is singular in this example because it is supposed to agree with «le monde » , "the world", which here refers to the world itself, and not idiomatically to everyone in it.
Let me know if you have any more questions.
Pretty much. We can look at the equivalent English sentence, too:
Here, the verb "
to belong" is conjugated to its singular form, "
belongs", to agree with the singular subject, "
the world", because "
the world" is doing the belonging. "The world belong" would sound wrong, and in fact is wrong.
Similarly, the verb "
to get" is conjugated to its plural form "
get", to agree with the plural object, "
those" - because "
those" are the ones who are doing the getting up. "Those who gets" would sound wrong, and be wrong.
This agreement works in much the same way for the French:
Hope that helps, let me know if there are any more questions.
The direct translation of this is "The world belongs to those who himself the wind early". It's hard to understand phrases when they have no connection to the individual meaning of words. In this case, there no worm or early bird.
Are we being taught phrases that bear the same lesson but not the same meaning as in English when translated?
The literal translation is the world belongs to those who rise early. I have no idea where you get the himself the wind out of that. This is called an 'idiom'. The meaning is in the phrase as a whole, rather than the individual words and they are mapped to the phrases in the other language most matching their meaning.
I think I like the French version of this better, "The world belongs to those who get up early." rather than the English expression "The early bird catches the worm." as I never understood things from the point of view of a bird...waking up early to get a worm just doesn't quite have the same appeal to me >:D
The Idioms of other cultures are among the more difficult things to learn. I think it would be a great idea if Duo took this opportunity to teach us the actual French idioms with their actual English translations, rather than matching it to the closest English counterpart? I don't mind doing it the way Duo is teaching, but I think we're missing out on an excellent opportunity here in learning how to think French. From what I can determine; The French here literally says: The world belongs to those who rise early. I get that. It reminds me of a Bond villain, but I get it. "The early bird catches the worm." Has a similar meaning, but similar isn't 'the same as'. The proverbial "worm" is one (1) thing, where as "the world" implies Everything*. We (English), are learning words and phrases that belong to French. We are also learning what they mean in French culture (all good), but wouldn't it be great to also understand the major idioms (like these), as well as the minor idioms (which are included in everyday French), to understand them all from the French perspective, rather than the closest English perspective?
(sorry for the long post!) :-/