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"You cannot see the woods for the trees."

Translation:C'est l'arbre qui cache la forêt.

March 15, 2018

15 Comments


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

Cette phrase est difficile à traduire en anglais


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

It's an idiom, that's why it is difficult to translate. un idiome, une expression, un proverbe


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

Also, the word "woods" is American English - it should also accept "wood" → (Old English wudu, from a Germanic word related to Welsh gwŷdd - ‘trees’.) as this is the way this phrase is cited in British Commonwealth countries

http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/can%27t+see+the+wood+for+the+trees

As wood is both plural and singular, the addition of the "s" at the end is superfluous..

It was also my understanding that Americans say "You can't see the forest for the trees".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Betsy134556

Yes, as an American I would say "forest."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jumi212

It is all very well introducing new idioms but as I was doing a general practice session and this has never come up before - in nearly 12 months of DL I don’t know how we are expected to get it right. And what is grammatically incorrect about a literal translation?


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

"Tu ne peux pas voir la forêt à cause des arbres." was also accepted.


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

Intéressant ! I thought it was a fixed idiomatic expression.


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

As is "Tu ne peux pas voir le bois à cause des arbres."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sharon884224

Vous pouvez pas voir les bois pour les arbres. That is literal translation as worded in English. Funny, I asked Google and it gave me this so don't know why a literal translation isn't accepted by Duolingo. A cause de would mean ? because of?


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

C'est les arbres qui cache la forêt. Surely it isn't only one tree that hides the forest. But, there's not accounting for fixed expressions.


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

Ce sont les arbres qui cachent la forêt.


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

I love the idea that you can translate an English expression into a totally different French one with no help from anywhere!!!!


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

It is the tree which hides the forest. It must be an enormous tree. Ha Ha


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

Really though. Idioms should have their own modules. There's no way anyone unfamiliar with the French version of this can translate it correctly into the language with her/his knowledge of the vocabulary and the rules of grammar.


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

Different translations are accepted. One of them is Vous ne pouvez pas voir le bois à cause de l'arbre.

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