The sentence literally means, "More can the pen than the sword." Meaning that the pen can accomplish more than the sword, with no mention as to might, power, strength, etc. That being said, Duolingo marks everything other than "Mightier" as wrong because this is not really an idiom, but a quote. Using something other than "Mightier" is basically equivalent to using "87" in the Gettysburg address.
Loved that last sentence of yours. And thus, a simple Lingot shall have to be my equivalent of giving you a high-five.
Could you explain that reference, because, unlike Captain America, I didn't get it. :P
"Four score and seven years ago..." (Gettysburg Address) A score is 20 years. 4x20=80+7=87 See :D
Ah now I get it! For those who still don't : The Gettysburg Address is a speech by U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, one of the best-known in American history and it goes "Four score and seven years ago..." A score is 20 years. (4x20)+7=87 :D Lingots to both of you :*
I know this is a very famous quote rather than an idiom per se, but I actually like the literal translation better. Saying the pen can do more than the sword is exactly what is intended in the quote, is that how it would actually be said in Spanish? (assuming this quote is even known in Spanish)
"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate—we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom— and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
EZMickey is referencing a reference. It's from "The Avengers." Cap, who in present day was not understanding much of the modern references and pop culture (being from the 40s), was finally able to understand a joke about flying monkeys which appear in "The Wizard of Oz" (1939). Thus he remarked with excitement, "I understood that reference."
Idioms don't usually translate word for word. Who hasn't heard the pen is mightier than the sword?
I as a foreigner am not aware of some english idioms so even though I know what this idiom mean and we have our own equivalent in my language, I didn't really know to to put it in english. I would never think of word mightier as it is not used that much in english anymore.
The literal translation "The feather can do more than the sword" was accepted. Most of the time Duolingo accepts the literal translation as well as the idiomatic phrase that is the equivalent.
Sorry to say it but - No, your answer is incorrect. "More can the pen than the sword" is just an almost word for word translation of the spanish, but that is not how we translate spanish, or most other languages if we want to make sense.
If we simply aim for a literal, word for word translation, our answers will be comically inaccurate.
Your answer really doesn't make sense...More can the pen? More WHAT can the pen? The phrase, commonly used in english, is "The pen is mightier than the sword".
In this instance, Duolingo is definitely right.
I understand that duolingo is correct in this case because the literal translation is not commonly used in english, and indeed makes little sense. I was saying that even though that is the word-for-word translation, anything other than the original quote (or part of it, anyway) would not carry the same intended meaning. I do see the confusion towards the word-for-word, though. We could sacrifice the word order, which isn't that strict in Spanish anyway... "The pen is more able that the sword" seems more like it. Thanks for the feedback.
Despite my awareness of the English proverb that DL prefers as the translation, I chose to try a literal translation, adjusting word order so the English sounds more natural: "The pen can do more than the sword." DuoLingo accepted it.
I disagree with the sentiment that word-for-word translation of a Spanish idiom is wrong by the reason "that is not how we translate ... if we want to make sense". If the intent of translating were to provide some impressive understanding of English, and in particular the "more common" use of a particular English idiomatic expression, your explanation might help. But if as I think the intent of translating to English here is to show an understanding of the Spanish idiom, a word-for-word translation should suffice, provided it is valid English and does convey at least the literal meaning of the Spanish idiom. I, for one, am using DuoLingo Spanish units to improve my Spanish, not my English, and I value accurate translations of Spanish idioms over inaccurate use of a similar English idiom just because it may be arguably a more common phrasing in English.
But if one simply translates word for word, they would definatly understand the meaning of each word but not necesarily the syntax (which, if it means what I think it means, means how words relate to each other).
Syntax is how you construct a sentence, but semantics is the word you're looking for, I think :P - the overall semantics of the sentence would be its overall meaning :)
actually, sorry, what you said was still fine. I think mentioning the semantics of it still adds to an understanding, though
The literal translation "The feather can do more than the sword" was accepted. Most of the time Duolingo accepts the literal translation as well as the equivalent idiomatic phrase.
It doesn't sound as profound, but in my opinion "The pen is able to do more than the sword" should have been accepted as a translation: it is a correct sentence that conveys the meaning. Did you report it?
this: Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Abraham Lincoln November 19, 1863
"The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here" ... seven score and fourteen years later...
the pen is mighter than the sword, but both can ruin a good shirt!
by Dr. Cuthbert Soup, advisor to the ill advised.
if you have not read Soup's book A Whole Nother Story. the "timely advice" he gives at the end of each chapter is abolutly classic!!! a couple other of his quotes are.
You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him participate in syncronized diving
Those who forget the past are condemed to repeat it, because after all as a wise man once said those who forget the past are condemed to repeat it.
Thomas Edison invented many things, including the name Alva, in fact at the time of his deathe he held ber thousands of patents. Which is a lot of wheight for one man to be carrying and is probably what killed him.
Duolingo does accept translations without "mightier". The literal translation "The feather can do more than the sword" was accepted. Most of the time Duolingo accepts the literal translation as well as the idiomatic phrase that is the equivalent.
It is true what you are saying and I also think that it is the wrong translation.
You are very close, because that is not the entire quote. Edward Bulwar Lytton said, "Beneath the rule of men entirely great, the pen is mightier than the sword." That extra clause makes one hell of a difference.
I can shrug off a pen. I might be able to dodge a sword. It's when the pen calls for more swords that you know you're in trouble!
The English idiom is "The pen is mightier than the sword." The 'puede' suggests power
I don't think there's any problem with the meaning - "more powerful" and "mightier" are equivalent.
But in English this isn't just a proverb or an idiom, but a direct quote from a 19th century play by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, which says "The pen is mightier than the sword." The phrase eventually became popular enough to have an entire Wikipedia page devoted to it:
Your trivial piece of 19th century history for the day :)
nothing it sounds better though when you say the pen is mighter than the sword:)
that translation would mean that it's preferable to use the poen than the sword, whereas the idiom means that the pen can be mightier than the sword, without saying which one would be better to use.
My favourite saying OF ALL TIME! "The pen is mightier than the sword (and I recently picked up a pen)"
You can't sharpen a pen, therefore, a pencil is mightier than the pen :)
I suspect that this is not a Castillian idiom at all, just a translation of an English idiom (actually a quote from a play) translated into Spanish
We have a similar proverb in Turkish. "Kalem kılıçtan keskindir." Which literally translates as; "The pen is sharper than the sword"
I had "The pen is stronger than the sword." and was marked off. Sure, it wasn't the exact wording but it was the same concept.
This is an idioms section. If you said in english " the pen is more powerful" or " the pen is capable of more" instead of "the pen is mightier". Then you would either sound foreign or sound like you dont quite remember the phrase.
why does "the pen is greater than the sword" not work? this is supposed to be idioms, no?
Well I live in WALES G.B + the saying the pen is mightier than the sword, is correct. We are not in America, nor are we learning American spelling, but English.
Why does it deem "Mightier is the pen than the sword" an incorrect translation?
I would guess that valid translations of idiomatic expressions elude enumeration even more than the simpler phrases which sometimes still need help in this free language-learning system. :) Duolingo does allow reporting of such things, should you want to offer it via the flag icon. (Disclaimer: I use their apps but do not work for Duolingo.)
The translation from spanish to English never makes sense, never said mightier in this sentence
I thought pen was "boligrafo" and pluma was "feather" . So, "the feather is mightier than the sword"? (Lingot right there)
Yes, greatness can also mean power. I suppose greatness has more meanings than mightiness, and is a more subjective measure, because although it generally means better, it can also mean larger. I think I personally would have accepted "the pen is greater than the sword", even though it is not the exact proverb.
When these idioms are quite literal why do we need to have an english approximation
Pluma means feather or pen the "quill" in Spanish is "canon (first n with tilde) de la pluma" or roughly 'tube of the feather.' Most importantly, the original quote uses the word "pen."
It didn't accept Feather for me, unfortunately. I'm not a native English speaker so I wasn't sure how the saying went, but I knew pluma was feather and tried that out. "The feather is mightier than the sword" didn't work out though
A feather whose central quill is cut to a point with a sharp knife becomes a pen and is used for writing. In English it ceases to be called feather and is called a pen. In Spanish it retains the name "pluma" even after the feather has been converted to a pen. In French "nom de plume" means pen name. So in Spanish a feather pen is simply a pluma, convert that to English and it is a pen and not a feather. This is hard to deal with between two languages, but it sounds like you are the native speaker of a third language which makes it even more difficult.
The idiom we use is "The pen is mightier than the sword." Above, cquark gave a nice reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_pen_is_mightier_than_the_sword
I'm a native English speaker, and I answered "sharper." Mightier does sound more correct to me, but sharper came to mind first (I'm not the best example though- I often have trouble thinking of the right word).
A quick google tells me that nobody uses "sharper," which is kind of strange because we use sharp to refer to intelligence or humor.
this course is getting on my nerves i've been redoing for like 7 times and it's all because of the stupid dictionary and even if the answers are logical and it can work it's still counted a mistake all because i wrote stronger instead of mightier of because i wrote dog not a dog
Why is CAPABLE OF MORE wrong?!? It is not! Don't you know the word capable???
The comments for the phrases in this skill have more value than the lessons. And don't expect great things from flirting: I laughed and winced at the same time when I saw "Are you lost? The sky is far from here."
Did you know when you wrote this that ceilo means both sky and heaven? lol!
I got it wrong when I put that "More is done with the pen than the sword." I couldn't remember that the English version of the idiom uses the word mighty.
I typed "a pen can do more than a sword" and it said next time use "the" insted of "a" and it was wrong
Remember that these are idioms, they definitely will not be an exact literal, word for word translation.
"Than" indicates a comparison, whereas "then" indicates a sequence of events.
325 is less than 398742824.
I died, then realized it had only been a dream.
I must be on a different wavelength... I thought it meant "More can talk than do" .. of course the "pen" being a metaphor for "not doing" and "sword" for doing!
Actually, William Zayne, i used the word "stronger", not mightier, because it is a real idiom and not a quote, perhaps quotable from movies, shows, books where they happened to use said idiom. The app is just trying to teach you a language also, so take what you can from it especially considering its free. Maybe shell out the money for Roseta Stone and youll get what you paid for? Just wish everyone would stop complaininy about an application they got for free.
You can't give lingots on the app, but the desktop version has a "give lingot" button next to the up and downvote arrows. 2 Lingots are earned by completing a skill, 1 by reaching a 10 day streak (2 more for 20, 3 for 30, 4 for 40.... so on), and 1 for putting a document on immersion. There might be 1 or 2 other ways. HTH!
I don't see why my answer was not accepted "More is able with the pen than the sword." but I could be wrong, by the comments below it seems I am if is was translating for a Spanish speaking to an English speaking person they would catch my drift I'm sure.
this idiom reminds me of an Islamic narration that says: "مداد العلماء افضل من دماء الشهداء" literally means: "scholars' pen is higher [in rank] than martyrs' blood"
It is same with "Kalem kılıçtan keskindir." in Turkish. It means "The pen is sharper than the sword." The knowledge and power of wises are more powerful than the force and soldiers ..
The literal translation, word for word, is "more is able to the pen than the sword".
With a pen you can teach, learn and wright with a sword you you can kill.
A pen is stronger than a sword, I think this is used to say sometimes a word/sentence/ has stronger impact than using sword/gun
What an old fashioned phrase - don't think it is in common usage in English (UK)!! Would be pleased to be proved wrong though
"More able is the pen than the sword" is the direct translation and isn't accepted. ty duo.
This is my favorite quote. You really can do more with a pen than a sword. For instance, all you do with a sword is hurt and kill, but witha pen you can write, draw, even write a nice note or a letter. I just plain love this one.
I don't think this was a very good sentence. The sentence was confusing and words were missing.
As a Filipino, I always hear this idiom when we are talking about Jose Rizal, as Jose Rizal wrote poems and novels to enlighten the minds of the Filipinos and choose to revolt against the Spaniards.
Ps: He also wrote them in Spanish. His famous works were "Noli me Tangere" and "El Filibusterismo". When he was about to be executed due to his works, he wrote "La Ultima Adios"
Meaning of your 'correct' answer and my submitted answer is exactly the same. My answer should therefore be accepted.
when i typed it, they were new words. the dictionary said " more is the pen than the sword". But Duolingo said the it was " the pen is mightier than the sword". But the dictionary said that is was more is the pen than the sword! It does not make any sense!!!
This is in a section marked "idioms" not "famous quotes"... It should accept "The pen is greater than the sword" as an equivalent unless it marks the statement as a quote. I hear both as a native English speaker.
we have a saying in turkish almost exactly same "kalem kılıçtan üstündür" translation:pen is greater than sword.
"more powerful is the pen than the sword"...but that seems to be wrong.
I think they should have accepted "The pen is able to do more than the sword" instead the system marked is as 'wrong' and gave me the answer "The pen can do more than the sword" which makes definitely sense, too. But why didn't the system accept it? Anyway I think even if I think my solution is correct I think that the translation above on this page "The pen is mightier than the sword" is the best and is better language, but I'm still concerned about the other translation.
What's wrong with "The pen can more than the sword"? I don't see any instance of a verb that could be translated to "accomplish" in the original sentence.
La pluma es mas ponderosa que la espada. vs The pen can hold the sword which google translate says Mas puede la pluma que la espada is in English
Fun fact: the United States of America was literally argued into existence. Patriots wrote articles and made speeches on why the king of England had given up the rights to the colonies through what they saw as unlawful taxation. In this case, the pen (or ink) was literally mightier than the sword. :P