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  5. "Lui è un uomo in gamba."

"Lui è un uomo in gamba."

Translation:He is a capable man.

August 6, 2013

110 Comments


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

IDIOM ALERT! ;-)


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

When I am returning to Australia from my grandmother's home town in the North of Italy they say "buona fortuna in gamba" . I think it means "good luck in (your) travels". Up there the only form of transport was walking or horses for centuries. Both involve legs.


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

Of course I answered it as " He is a leg man"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/a-muktar

Grazie. Danke. Gracias. Merci!


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

what the ever living F?


[deactivated user]

    It's probably a sign of the historical importance of walking, running, and horse riding in Italy/Rome. A man who can walk well, a man "in legs" is a capable man.


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

    My first translation was "He is a leg man," meaning a man who is more attracted by a woman's legs than by her breasts. Shows where my mind is at, I guess.


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

    Or some man who never skips leg day at the gym ;-)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LuisRolando3

    Genious ! have a lingot


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ash.Purple

    I am un uomo in gamba then.


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

    DL suggested "He is a man on the ball" as an alternate for me. Although I definitely use "He is on the ball" I don't think I have ever used "He is -a man- on the ball" Any other native English speakers think I should suggest correcting this English sentence?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jeffrey855877

    I said "He is an on the ball man" just to see what happened, and it was accepted. But if I were being serious, I just say, "He is a capable man", as "capable" is the first suggested translation for "in gamba"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cleveland69526

    Indeed. Same as "you're on the ball". No one ever says "you are a man on the ball".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jack386237

    Yes, I had had the same translation.


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

    I agree with Mutt & sur- idioms need to be a separate lesson -toward the end - when we're ready for the nuances of the language... and it will be a "piece of cake!" Until then, we're "not playing with a full deck" and "your guess is as good as mine!"


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

    I have always understood 'in gamba' to mean smart or clever. Capable surely isn't the only way to correctly translate this?


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

    I also learned it to mean smart.


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

    Smart is accepted; just tried it


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ClaireRoth1

    I wrote 'clever' but got it wrong


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marciamckean1

    I've always understood "in gamba" to correspond to our English expression, "with it," which can have many applications. WordReference also translates it as "on the ball" or "on top of things," and gives "In gamba!" as a way of saying "Take care!" "Capable" seems a rather boring way to translate it.

    I also vote for WordReference to help get at the nuances of these expressions.


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

    Wordreference.com also specifically lists the compound form "essere in gamba" as meaning "be very capable".


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

    In English, "He can think on his feet" suggests a similar idea.


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

    Good way to remember the phrase. It's closer to the Italian than what I contrived: a man (who in tough situations) always lands on his feet.


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

    Maybe this idiom has something to do with the Hebrew connection between the word רגיל <rageel> (=used to something/capable of something), derived from the root ר.ג.ל (RGL), and the word רגל <Regel> (=leg) of the same root. So far i've encountered many similar phenomenons, where the Italian association of words was identical to the Hebrew equivalent...


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/johnc125945

    If the anti idioms are not pulling our leg i think they should toe the line. Some of us want to learn italian as spoken, idioms and all.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/FrankAtkin1

    Collins Dictionary gives in gamba = in buona salute = well (therefore, presumably, healthy) and = capace, sveglio = bright, smart


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

    Funny! In Spanish "gamba" means "prawn" so reading this sentence one cannot avoid picturing a man riding a prawn or sort of.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ramanujan3

    What about "He is a man on his toes"


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

    'he is a fit man' seems to cover everything and sounds right in English.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/petermuster550

    Sorry to say that, but this is totally over the top, Duolingo. We really need a separate section with idioms. This is not helpful at all.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tim769110

    Take the idioms out of the medical section.. You're just confusing learners. None of the idioms would be used in the medical world so put them in there own section... Out of harms way!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nonna602151

    An idiom section all to itself would be impossible to cope with! Nooooooo...!


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

    I agree. If you hear this in speech, you're going to have no idea what it means without being introduced to it, and having it in a section where the word leg is introduced makes perfect sense.


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

    'In gamba' cannot be translated as being 'in shape'


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

    Wow! Some of these comments are years old! My Italian relatives always used "in gamba" to mean "in shape" or "doing well". I'm sure different regions have their own nuances for idioms.


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

    Yes, idioms are always.." un male di testa", hahahahaha! Saluti!


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

    And i agree with you; it looks like no one is interested on doing comments in this page. I think it's a sad situation for us, languages learners, not expressing our feelings. Maybe, we are afraid of making mistakes, not knowing that it is another way of learning. Greeetings!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WalterZAMB4

    Phrases like this require the literal translation as well. Especially when other Italian phrases translate to the same meaning such as "È un uomo capace". This would allow the student to understand the euphemism.


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

    If "He is a capable man" is what they wanted as an answer, they should have put "È un uomo capace." There are several different ways to translate this idiom, and then you get marked wrong if you use one of the other translations. That's way too rigid a method for teaching a language; I've noticed this a lot about DuoLingo. It's not a good way to learn idioms.


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

    I would translate "in gamba" as "hands on"


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

    I think that "He is on his feet" would be closer to the Italian phrase.


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

    I am also glad they do. The difference between reliable information and ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤! ;)


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

    "he is a smart man" is perfectly correct and should be accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nonna602151

    ...a stand-up guy?


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

    That one occurred to me too. :-)


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

    I answered, He is a leg man......Your not the only one Macossay.


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

    whoever selected this translation got it wrong. I have three dictionaries that say 'in gamba' means 'well' or 'in good health'.


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

    He is a fit man was refused


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cseverin80

    Why test us on idioms when we are learning the language? I am still in literal translation mode.


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

    This is not the lesson to teach idioms. There is a different lesson for idioms.


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

    warn us about the idioms


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KateMcCabe4

    Eessere in gamba means to be in good shape. The "correct" answer in the exercise shows the answer as He is a man on the ball! How in the world would we know all these idioms? Here it shows the answer as He is capable man.


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

    A French friend of mine used to say, "He is in his legs." Maybe this is where that came from.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roan866446

    Words for body parts can be both remarkably stable, as can be seen in the words for 'nose' and 'heart', for example, and changeable. Slangish metaphors become, for example, the "regular" terms. Classical Latin crus (crura) 'leg' was replaced in Late Latin by gamba, borrowed from Greek kampe 'curvature'...In Japanese, gambaru means 'hang in there, do one's best'. But I remember gamba from the French form jambe, cf. il a des jambes.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jack386237

    Why not man on the ball instead of capable man? Same meaning, both given as translations of in gamba?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jan534792

    Already been discussed several times earlier in the thread!!


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

    I wrote " he's a man on the run" ! How would you say that?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Giovanna282584

    Why suggest a translation and then mark it wrong, Duo?


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

    I tried 'gogetter'; no luck.


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

    Think I will just stick with 'capace'.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aviva914593

    a man in shape has the same meaning


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

    Does "a man in shape" also mean that he's a man skilled in, say, his work?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KJR3113

    So Gambia is translated as capable? Really STUPID learning tool


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

    Gambia is an African country.
    in gamba is an expression meaning 'to be on top of', 'to be very capable'.


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

    A common expression used in America is "he thinks on his feet" which means he is on the ball. My translation should be accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lina1519

    Is it possible to say "una donna in gamba"?


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

    By all means :-)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michelle836345

    I believe "on your leg" is used in ballet......


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardHar981284

    he is on the ball means exactly the same but is less boring


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daphne656741

    I don’t care anymore. More important things to worry about!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lu.S.A.

    Another idiom that is here only to introduce the word "gamba", but has nothing medical in it.

    The word could be introduced in another sentence, more suitable to the medical section (and to get the meaning of the word).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Graymac70

    He is a good man. Not acceptable


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

    WHEN WILL THE IDIOM ALERT BECOME A REALITY??


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aviva914593

    he is a man in shape (or good shape) is a better translation, you should allow it


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smoky4

    "He is a fit man" should be accepted.


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

    What does this have to do with the lesson? Is it an idiom or colloquial phrase?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kerry313131

    This is Duo's biggest mistake. In a category that is important - medicine and parts of the body- DL puts in an ifiom of no signicance and help to learning. idioms are interesting and important but it is a high mistake to put them in an important category.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/osvaldo189005

    totally stupid and without sense this kind of sentences. ❤❤❤❤ you duolingo


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/osvaldo189005

    forro importante duolingo, stronzo


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daphne656741

    How in God’s name does that make sense?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AJ_2097

    Can someone explain what does this even mean?!


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

    This is not the lesson for idioms. Hey Duo, keep the idioms in their own lesson.


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

    "He has legs" is as close as this comes to an American idiom. It should be accepted.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CatherineM557980

    I almost put, he is a leg man, too, but peeked.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Calexander21

    I'm never gonna make it through the medical section with all this idiom nonesense!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Manuel883728

    again the translation should be he is a leg man. How come this ends up meaning he is a capable man? Jeez!


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

    This is definitely not what the Italian sentence means.

    From https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=leg+man&amp=true:

    leg man
    A male whose primary sexual interest centers on women's legs, sometimes in distinction to one who is interested in tits or asses.
    He's a leg man; he prefers legs to tits.


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

    "He is a very capable man" is correct. Wordreference and Collins give "in gamba" as "to be very capable". DL gives this question with no attempt at any preparation, they should at least have the decency to check the translation with a reputable source.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dino705106

    Enough of the idioms. I am trying to learn to speak the language. Before I learn the idioms I just want to be able to understand the words I am speaking. At the end of the course, there should be a whole section on idioms, but not while we are still trying to learn the definitions of words and sentence structures.


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

    If you are really trying to have conversations with people who actually speak the language, idioms are a vital part of the language. REALLY listen to your conversations some time - idioms such as these make up a pretty large portion of your speech. Some of them have become so fossilized you don't even realize that they started AS idioms (metaphors, largely).


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

    Yes! You only need to watch an italian soap opera to confirm this Hypothesis.


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

    I would avoid this kind of "made" sentences, as for Spaniards (and probably for other non native english speakers) are just impossible as we have no way to guess them.

    Must be also said that after more than 350 lessons is like the second or third time that I come across one of those ;)


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

    It's a way to learn expressions. A language is not only made of grammar and "official" sentences: colloquial forms are as important as verb conjugation :-)


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

    Yes, but it would make more sense to teach these in a lesson devoted to idioms rather than throwing them into a lesson flagged as being about a specific topic, especially where the idiom bears no relation to its equivalent in the learner's language.


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

    It finally dawned on me that phrases that make no sense when translated are probably idioms, so I've started looking them up. My favorite source is WordReference (http://www.wordreference.com/). The forums at WR are good for discussions.


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

    Yes! Me, too. "Idiom alert" is a good way to think of these situations. (with a nod to dleibo)

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