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  5. "אנחנו עומדים מולו."

"אנחנו עומדים מולו."

Translation:We are standing in front of him.

July 28, 2016

31 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

Note that "מול" can also be in the figurative sense, "we are dealing with/standing up to him".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tzipity

Just be sure I'm understanding the figurative sense, if say you go to boss to report a problem with a guy at work and the boss already knows about the issue and is dealing with it, he could say "אנחנו עומדים מולו"? He and management or HR, are dealing with the guys issue? Or "Have you told your son you're getting a divorce?" Same thing, right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

Yes.

There is a nuance, I'll try to get through it. The "guy at work" example would usually not use "מולו" since it's coming from a hierarchy. If he is standing up to them, they are dealing with something "on their level" so it would be used.

I think מול would be used when it's peer-level, or a same-level discussion (as in the son example, they are parents, but the discussion would be level).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tzipity

Thank you. I think it can be so hard but also so important to understand figurative language when one is learning a foreign language. It's got to be hard to explain or teach as well, since I know people speak figuratively so much but in your native language you don't really have to even think about it, it's just understood or words take on different meanings and no one really knows why sometimes.

Actually, that'd make for a great lesson, figurative usage as well as figures of speech.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

That's why it's often so hard to translate satisfactorily.

I think such a lesson would confuse. Things can be taught simply and people catch on. After all, our kids do.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tzipity

Good point, I'm sure I've picked up figurative meanings just from context before from songs or Israeli movies, etc. And I'm sure that gets even easier with more practice and knowledge of the language.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Larry824711

Wouldn't that be "נגדו" rather than "מולו"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ztk123

I answered "we are standing across from it" and was marked wrong. Can't "מול" also translate as "across from"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Elana1818

I agree that "We are standing across from him" should be accepted. I just reported it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Larry824711

I just used "across from him" and it was accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

Furthermore, מול does not mean "in front of"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mazzorano

What would be your translation of מול? Bear in mind that the context here is "opposite".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

Opposite of, or across of.

The latter can be used to mean "in front of", just like one might use מול, but it's wrong to translate it that way.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mazzorano

I agree, but I would say more misleading than wrong, as it can clearly mean "in front of". The problem resides in the English interpretation of "in front of". I will add the alternatives and contemplate changing it in the next tree.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlmogL

Yes it can, report it if you get a chance again.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaftaliFri1

It's like that across the course. They should all be fixed.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ry2110

Can מולו and נגדו ever be used interchangeably? Is one more physical positioning and one more figurative?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YardenNB

I believe both words made the same semantic journey: from describing a face-to-face physical position to a figurative meaning of "interfacing with", or confrontation. נגד completed the shift: in modern Hebrew it is only used for confrontation. מול can still be used in all contexts. So in contexts of confrontation (sports, politics) they are interchangeable. Note that the cases of figurative meaning that is not confrontational - e.g in your job you work מול suppliers - interfacing, hopefully cooperating; you won't use נגד.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YardenNB

(It's a funny thing, when writing this comment, in any English word with a figurative meaning, the physical etymological source looms close behind: interface, confront, opposite...)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YardenNB

Another tidbit worth mentioning, speaking of non-confrontational figurative meaning: one of the most famous word pairs in the bible is עזר כנגדו (look it up if you don't know it). It's very confusing to school children, because the meaning of נגד here is at very obvious odds with the modern meaning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theresa754142

עזר כנגדו is ezer kenegdo “helpmate”...helper beside him as the ancient meaning and helper against him in the modern meaning!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IngeborgHa14

Well, the modern translation תָּנָ״ךְ רָם renders עֵ֖זֶר כְּנֶגְדּֽוֹ in a gloss as יְצוּר שְׁיַּעֲזֹר לוֹ.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Theresa754142

You seem to be far beyond me in your Hebrew study, so I couldn’t understand תנייך רם even though I looked it up on two different sites, but I’m guessing that the first word is Tanakh, the Hebrew Bible. As for the last three Hebrew words, Google Translate gave me "A creature that will help", so I prefer "helper beside him"! Thanks for your input.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IngeborgHa14

Well, Tanakh Ram is a translation of the Hebrew Bible into Modern Israeli Hebrew. It is quite interesting what they change. Genesis starts בִּתְחִלַּת הַבְּרִיאָה, כְּשֶׁבָּרָא אֱלוֹהִים אֶת הָעוֹלָם, וְהָאָרֶץ הָיְתָה שׁוֹמֵמָה וְרֵיק, וְהָיָה חֹשֶׁךְ מֵעַל מֵי הַתְּהוֹם שֶׁכִּסּוּ אֶת הָאָרֶץ, וְרוּחַ אֱלוֹהִים הָיְתָה מְרַחֶבֶת עַל פְּנֵיהֶם, which is quite a shift.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/D.EstherNJ

It's interesting that the Hebrew word for "in front of" is the same as the Hebrew word for "circumcision".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IngeborgHa14

Well, the homophone מוּל is the passive participle circumcised and *circumcision is the verbal noun מִילָה.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheGerk1

Is "We stand before him" acceptable, or is that changing the meaning to much?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaryJaneKe4

when do I use מול and when do I use לפני?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IngeborgHa14

Well, you use מוּל only if you are facing a person or a thing, like אַתְּ צְרִיכָה לָשִׁיר מוּל קָהָל חַי you need to sing in front of a live audience or יָשַׁ֫בְּתִּי מוּל הַטֶּלֶוִ֫יזְיָה I sat in front of the television, while לִפְנֵי, which is more often used in a temporal sense, only states your position in front of something or someone else, without indication where you are looking or heading, like רָאִיתִי אֹתְךָ לִפְנֵי בֵּית־הַסֵּ֫פֶר I saw you in front of the school or אַ֫בָּא שֶׁלִּי רָץ לִפְנֵי מַשָּׂאִית וְנֶהֱרַג my dad ran in front of a truck and was killed.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rableshoni

so מול is nearer to "opposite to" rather than "in front of"?

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