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  5. "Tu veux de l'eau plate ou du…

"Tu veux de l'eau plate ou du vin pétillant ?"

Translation:Do you want still water or sparkling wine?

April 12, 2020



American English speakers would either refer to 'still water' as 'tap water' or 'flat water'. If those definitions aren't accepted, they should be. "Still water" feels very unnatural to me.


I have never heard of "flat water" or "still water" when ordering in a restaurant.


Nope. Me either. In most states you're given plain old water at most all sit down restaurants. I suppose there are maybe some restaurants that could ask you before hand what type of water you'll have... to be frank, it sounds a little pretentious. No offense to anyone.


That's interesting - in the UK the question for water would be still or sparkling, and both could be bottled mineral water. Tap water could be yet another option.


Still water can be tap water, or bottled water, so tap water is not an accurate translation.


A better response would be "plain water." Still water has the implication of a deep river as in "still water runs deep." It could also be stagnant water, something you don't want to drink on a dare.


don't say plain water in the midwest. people will laugh.


Tap water is accepted


some americans. there are 400 000 000 of us. i know what flat water is, but never heard it spoken of.


I have never heard the phrase 'still water' in my whole life!! One would say 'plain water' or 'tap water'. Also, 'sparkling water' or 'soda water' for 'l'eau petillant'.



Me either. I grew up in New England. We typically referred to it as 'water'. Most people got their water from a tap back then. If we wanted something else we'd specify. If there was any confusion we said "just plain water". This generally meant, not soda water, not bubbly water, nothing added, not even cubes.


See, now I'm in the Pacific northwest, and the only "Stillwater" I've heard of is the birthplace of one; Leroy Jethro Gibbs. In Washington state we just call it water. If there's anything different about it, Then we just say what's different: it's a bottle of~vitamin water, sparkling water, a trucker's water (um, don't drink from the last one.)


I grew up in NE New York state; I've always used "tap water," though I see how that wouldn't fit as a translation in reference to bottled water. But in English, if I meant non-bubbly water in a bottle, I would just saw "bottled water," which makes me wonder if it's common to qualify the type in French, or if this is just teaching us vocabulary. I've heard "still water" as a phrase, but usually in reference to puddles or ponds, as in water that isn't flowing and so is not safe to drink. "Plain water" is a new one for me, though.


emmy lou harris


"Still water" sounds like we're talking about a lake, or something. Does anyone out there use this phrase where they live? I'm very curious. Personally, I would say "flat water" or "plain/regular water" in trying to separate it from sparkiling water.


Still or sparkling/fizzy for bottled water would be usual in Britain - but what happened to de l'eau gazeuse?


Never heard still water used before and I have lived in US midwest and south. But we don't say soda for pop either so still water may be odd but normal someplace else. I'd be curious to know where in US its used if it is. Or Canada England maybe? Interesting


I think it relates specifically to French & Italian restaurants where they always start by bringing water to the table, and give you the choice of sparkling or (Non-sparkling). The Non-sparkling choice has a 50/50 chance of being bottled or just tap. In that context you need a specific word for water which is not sparkling and might or might not be from a bottle.


A native english speaker would say 'plain water' rather than "flat water," usually.


Yes, or just "water."


I have never ordered "still water" but I have seen large bodies of still water. As for ordering in a restaurant, I ask for water. If servers are confused as to what kind of water, they can ask a clarifying question such as, "Bottled or tap?" Almost everywhere I have gone, tap water is implied when the customer doesn't specify a type of bottled water.


Do you want your water, still or sparkling? Is how i would ask this question


But that's not the question being asked. The two choices (for some reason) are still WATER or sparkling WINE


Still water is the correct translation for l'eau plate, and is different than tap water (l'eau du robinet). If the waiter/waitress asks if you want eau plate or eau gazeuse, both will usually arrive in a bottle, at least in my experience in restaurants in Europe.


It may be the correct translation, but it's not correct English - at least not in context, as demonstrated by the volume of comments here where no native English speaker asks for 'still water' in a restaurant or anywhere else for that matter. 'Still water/s' is a term associated with large bodies of water, as noted above ("still waters run deep").


Exactly! People are hell bent on translating word for word from one language to another and that is NOT how translation works. Languages work in their own quirky way and to force one to be like another is to put square pegs into round holes. In France you will be offered 'de l'eau gazeuse.' Imagine in an English speaking restaurant being offered 'gassy water.' Just brought in from the swamp, I'd guess.


L'eau plate=eau non gazeuse=plain water

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