"Lui è un uomo in gamba."

Translation:He is a capable man.

August 6, 2013

75 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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/mairo.abugo

I typed "he is a man in leg" just because


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dan.dragon88

Was it marked correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/angus390025

My dog is a leg man as well.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/terri682970

I just burst out laughing!!


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

Grazie. Danke. Gracias. Merci!


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/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/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/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/shifra125034

I always asdociated רגיל


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/shifra125034

I always associated רגיל with "regular."


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/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/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/amazingarpit

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


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/Nonna602151

...a stand-up guy?


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

That one occurred to me too. :-)


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/silvanarochford

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


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/lina1519

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


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

By all means :-)


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

German idiom"er ist wieder auf den Beinen"= he's well again. In my language (Estonian) " he has his legs on the ground"= he's realistic


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/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/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/TimTheTechnician

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/SMCave

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


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/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/chey24chey24

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/Madeleine863330

Why is this whole section suddenly packed with idioms?!


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

Oh, i so wanted to say - incapable ; )


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew604821

He knows which side his bread is buttered on. He knows how many beans make five. He's the real monty. Idioms, gotta luv em.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cara801330

Aside from using the word "gamba" this really has nothing to do with medical...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anna684111

Apparently it could mean 'he is a smart man' or 'he is a good man'. Capable, good & smart all have different meanings as far as I am concerned, so would love a native-Italian speaker to throw light on this. Thanks


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cara801330

So many of the sentences in the "medical" lesson are actually idioms. It would be better just to have an idioms lesson than to try to pass these idioms off as medical sentences.

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