1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Italian
  4. >
  5. "Lei è una donna furba."

"Lei è una donna furba."

Translation:She is a cunning woman.

September 5, 2013

96 Comments


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

Why not "She is a smart woman"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kefah.amen

i asked italian person and said : furba mean : a person who build his success on another person work and some times it mean good mean , another time bad mean


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

I think "cunning" fits that description perfectly!


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

Exactly, furba come una volpe


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

According to this http://www.wordreference.com/enit/smart it should be acceptable, but I think better translations are "clever", "cunning" or "crafty".


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

There is the same sentence like this, in that case I used "smart" and it was accepted!


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

"clever" is not accepted. 01/15/2016


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

Now, "She is a clever woman" was accepted.


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

Not accepted August 2018


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/roman2095

Not accepted now. Sep 17


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

Not accepted Feb 2018


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chris725845

Still not accepted Feb 2018


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

not accepted 10/11/17


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

Not accepted on 12/01/17.


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

Not accepted June 2018.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/markfive.36

Not accepted 10 March 2018


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

"Clever" was not accepted for me, 17 Oct., 2018. (??)


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

Don't try 'crafty' on your last heart!!


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

She is a crafty woman = accepted Dec 2029. I considered trying "a sly woman" ...


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

I think it should be accepted. I reported it anyway.


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

I was marked wrong for "clever"


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

Is it smart to be cunning? Some would say yes. I would say no. Regardless, they are not synonyms.


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

"Smart" in British English means neatly dressed!


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

Im British and I would use smart to define cleverness and intelligence


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

Yes, that meaning is definitely accepted everywhere now, although it originally had implications of shrewdness or sharpness. Even modern dictionaries give as the first definition "Neat, trim and well-dressed"!


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

I live in tuscany and furba is used mostly to describe a crafty person usually from the sense of crafty like a fox. Ive never heard it used as expressing intelligence but rather clever, crafty in a manipulative or preplanned way. Depends how you interpret intelligent


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kefah.amen

"Furba or furbo" is When a Person want arrive to have success But destroy The other persons So furba wrong = smart


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

Why can't this be translated as You are a clever woman, as Lei = formal you.


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

Yes, you're correct. With no other context (as is the case here), "Lei è una donna furba" could be translated as, "You are a smart woman."


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

DL now says clever is wrong, should be crafty.


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

I JUST got a message from feedback saying 'crafty' was now accepted. I feel your pain if clever no longer is acceptable and has been in the past (that has happened to me elsewhere) but from everything I can figure out about 'furba' talking to native speakers and looking at references, 'crafty' seems to fit the bill of 'being clever about getting one's own profit/way'


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

Thanks. So generally speaking, 'furba' would not be considered a compliment.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KendallVal1

My Italian friends from the Milan area use it in conversation to compliment a friend on a good business deal, as in bargaining for an additional discount for something already on sale. I haven't heard my Roman friends use it in conversation use it. I think of "furbo" as one of those words without an exact English cognate and, where context matters.


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

That is the sense I get. Or if it IS a compliment, it is slightly backhanded!


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

Ah, such is italy, though many north europeans would consider it an insult-put down (along with rather a lot/few italians of course) all too many italians would use it with admiration. A recent furbo lord was Mr B and it didn't do him any real harm for 20 years.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MicheleMar33755

Fatti i c...... tuoi! Traduci questo e capirai caro silkwarrior.


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

I commend your response to those wishing to learn about italian culture beyond coffee, ice cream, wine and sun - as an example of a certain sort of italian's (minority thankfully) inability to discuss/debate without resorting to obscenity, aggression and personal comments. Students will find other examples on certain shouty TV talk shows. Italy is very much my business and my reading of the definition of furbo, and views of it, with examples, are, i am confident, very similar to many italians. Here's to italy's future, a civil inclusive liberal one.


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

Ma quanta educazione...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Susanna35

Yes, last time I did this exercise, it said it should be clever. I responded with "clever" this time and it marked me wrong.


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

Dear Ms Susanna, I too have been penalized for being consistent. Maybe it's a living language because it's all furbo-ed up!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Susanna35

Well, I guess it means they are trying to improve accuracy - anyway, my Cassell's dictionary agrees with the current responses; it says, "cunning, sly, artful, crafty, wily."


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

Me too. We've just got to be more furbo! Maybe I'll try "wily" next time.


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

'Sly woman' is also correct


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

Wikipedia gives various Italian terms for the cunning folk meaning of cunning woman (wise woman):

The names used for cunning-folk in Italy vary from region to region, although such names include praticos (wise people), guaritori (healers), fattucchiere (fixers), donne che aiutano (women who help) and mago, maga or maghiardzha (sorcerers). At times, they were sometimes called streghe (witches)

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cunning_folk

To make it clear, this is not a request for any of these terms to be accepted when translating this sentence from English to Italian. I wanted only to know what the translation of cunning woman would be for this particular context, as I considered it unlikely to be donna furba. I hope the Italian words I have found (above) are of interest. :)


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

Thanks for this, appreciated.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Fran975881

A phrase often used by men in divorce settlements


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

as i understand it, in italy being referred to as 'furba' in the sense of crafty or cunning is frequently considered a compliment, without the pejorative connotation english has.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/carol183222

furba also means smart so it should be accepted as correct


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

Clever is fine, duolingo not so furbo


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

Lost a heart by using cunning instead of clever!


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

"She's a cunning woman" is accepted now.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/stuart.hol2

I'd heard 'furba' used to describe someone who waited on the side of a teller window then jumped in when there was an opening, rather than waiting in the queue. :)


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

Yes, a good example.


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

In italiano to be "clever" is not a good thing. Its the equivlenet of being a "trickester" in english


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

Like a cunning fox who has just been appointed professor of cunning at Oxford.


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

Sounds very Blackadderesque :-)


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

Hmmm, this is weird


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

I tried, "she is a furtive woman", no go.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gritli4

furba also means clever according to the dictionary


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

is she a linguist?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marion51042

We just had furbe translate as clever 2 questions ago. Now you want crafty. You can only reasonably accept both


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Beck.F.

There appears to be a theme with the Green Owls adjectives. The men are intelligent, nice, and great athletes, but the women are cunning, boring, and bad students. At least the girls still get to stay 'pretty'.

<h1>1950ended70yearsago</h1>

In my experience as a native english speaker of nearly 40 years, with extensive tertiary education, usually when someone describes another as cunning, it means smart in a sneaky way, and most often it is meant as a negative. To say one is cunning in a positive way, we say deft, skillful, or clever, avoiding the word 'cunning' altogether.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roger.l.todd

cunning, crafty, shrewd


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

Furbo/a= shrewd, smart, cunning, sly, crafty [furbo come una volpe=crazy like a fox]

For people who knows how to help themselves in all uncomfortable situations or how to reach their goals in a effective way carefully avoiding pitfalls and beeing smart and devising clever ways and resourcefulness (qualità di chi, nella vita, sa trarsi abilmente d'impaccio o raggiungere i propri scopi, evitando accuratamente le insidie e ricorrendo a ingegnosi espedienti).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phillip780217

Google Translator gives furba as smart, so why not accept that ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Natasha724548

I translated it as a cunning woman. That was an old phrase for a witch :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2337

Just keep in mind that the double entendre doesn't work in Italian: I don't think we have any euphemism for "strega" to be honest (and "stregone" for males).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jold7D

For female (furba), the options are "cunning, sneaky" but for masculine (furbo) the English is "sly". They mean the same, but the option for female has more of a negative connotation


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AllenTaylo13

So, "She is a fur-bearing woman" is wrong??


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

Furba can also mean smart, can it not?


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

In English we also use 'lady' as a sarcastic admonition to a naughty girl!


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

I'm not native English speaker and I'm dirty minded about this sentence. Help. What is cunning


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cosmopolita61

Furba is suggested as person, but then its not accepted...


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

This exercise has questions using furba/furbi and in different cases will accept sneaky but not cunning or cunning but not sneaky.


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

I was writing clewer woman: not accepted. Correct solution: crafty woman. Is that correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Orayan0808

Why my "e" is always marked as a mistake/error?


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

it needs an accent. è = correct, e = wrong. I get that too sometimes when i'm too fast. But it's never a severe mistake i just get a 'pop-up' that tells me to pay attention to the accent. I never lose points.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RussNitali51106

Furba.. Furby.. Fox.. Cuning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrea699845

I always thought it meant cheeky. I was wrong I guess.


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

Donna can be either lady or woman, so I don't know why this was marked wrong.


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

That's useful, but really in English we don't have such a strong distinction and often use the terms interchangeably. I don't think duolingo should be penalising for this.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2337

Really? Would you go up to the First Lady (or the Queen) and say "Pleased to meet you, woman"? If you do, have it recorded and posted here, please :P


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

I wouldn't say "Pleased to meet you, lady" either. There is a difference between woman and lady, but not in all contexts.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2337

It's the same in Italian, really, except "signora" also means Mrs so it would be fine to call her so. But the point I wanted to come across is that "lady" (and "signora") has a degree of politeness that is totally absent in "woman" (and "donna"). It wouldn't be right to call a woman who is young, low-class and has bad manners a "lady". At least in Italy that could come out as offensive. Mukka in other comments summarized it as "every lady is a woman, but not every woman is a lady".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2337

@AernJardos You wouldn't call any woman "donna" to her face in Italy either; I can't really think of any default in Italian, pretty much all of them might result in a gaffe. To err on the polite side you can just ask them how they want to be called, but if they're on with age people default to signora. Incidentally Loredana Bertè wrote "Non sono una signora" (I'm not a lady).


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

@F.Formica Interesting, because in the US the opposite applies. It is never an etiquette error to refer to a woman as a "lady" or address a woman as "Miss" or "Ma'am". However it can be very crass to call her "woman" (especially to her face).

Basically the US default is to err on the side of politeness. The worst case scenario is you come off slightly old-fashioned.


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

Oh hi formica, haven't seen you in a while - you still around? - always found your comments very helpful and good humoured. Am afraid your example here is poor though. Adressing the queen as nicky points out is a whole different game. As B found out.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/f.formica
Mod
  • 2337

Yes, I'm still around, although less than I used to :) I agree, I was trying to get across how "lady" has a degree of respect that "woman" doesn't; and the way some people apply "lady" to every female human feels more than a bit sexist to me (how come not even waiters call me "sir"?).


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

furba - is far too imprecise a word - and therefore different translations should be accepted

Learn Italian in just 5 minutes a day. For free.
Get started