"Fia ulo estas fiulo."

Translation:An immoral person is an immoral person.

July 18, 2015

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The first rule of Tautology Club... is the first rule of Tautology Club


Kio estas la dua regulo?

(Li demandas kun la scio, ke estas komedia helpaĵo)


Gxi estas la dua regulo


La dua regulo estas la regulo poste de la unua regulo


This sentence works much better in Esperanto than in English.


Yup, inmoral persons usually are inmoral persons. Just like big trees usually are big trees.



Sorry, in english we have in-, im-, un-, il-, a-, and dis- all meaning the same thing.

edit: also "ir-" and "non-"


If you're going to mention in- im- il- separately, you also need ir- (irregular, irresponsible, ...). Those are all really the same prefix; the form depends only on the following sound. You could also consider including non-.




definitely. Just put the ones that came off the top of my head


So, for an earlier exercise they used "mongrel" for hundaĉo, which I strongly disagree with. But in this case fiulo really ought to be something like "villain" or "scoundrel." There are a truckload of such synonyms. I really don't understand the inconsistency. Translating it as "bad person" defeats the purpose of the sentence.


There is a word, "Kanajlo," already for villain or scoundrel. This sentence is just for illustrative purposes.


Confronted with a sentence like this, the student cannot possibly guess which translation Duolingo will accept.


"scoundrel" is accepted.


Kiel la affiksoj "fi-" kaj "-aĉ" malsamas?


Fi- denotes something being shameful or morally repugnant, abominable.

-aĉ- denotes disparagement, contempt or dislike.

Both tend to relate back to the speaker's opinions.


Bad person, no cookie.

Fia ulo, ne havu kekson.


It is funny that Esperanto chose this particle to express contempt, with so many Latin and Romance languages' etymons. The word for “to trust“ in Latin is confido, as in con + fi + do ≡ “with” + “trust” + “give”. This exercise in recreational etymology yields the fun fake fact that maybe Zamehof was such a good-hearted person that he thought even the most contemptible people are trust-deserving. (Or is it all the other way around?)


What I find funny is that this is the first time I've ever seen the Latin fido broken into two words. Partly because the Latin fi is the (if I have recalled this correctly) passive form of facio = "to make, construct, build, etc." whereas fido = "to trust, confide, rely upon, etc." is exactly as it exists in Esperanto. But yes, the Latin do does = "to give up, hand over, deliver, etc." So I'm certain that some old Roman comedians were making wordplay about "faithfully handing over built stuff" back when.

But the Esperanto fi has a different history: the (olde) English fie which seems to have come from the French fi, but we also find the Swedish (and Norwegian) fy, and the Greek (I don't have that font here) phy, the Russian (best I can approximate is) Tbøy, the Lithuanian fe, the Latin fu, and the Volapuk fi - all of which seem to be associated with disparagement on some level.

Especially the Volapuk.


Wow! I did not expect this! I suspected that fi had something to do with the French, even though I had no way to check it, but all the other coincidences come as a complete surprise to me. Is there any online source of reliable etymology other than Wiktionary?

Anyway, my little joke was not worthy of your deep analysis and your time, but thank you very much.


I don't know about on-line, but one of my very appreciated books is Konciza etimologia vortaro by André Cherpillod. I also referenced "An Elementary Latin Dictionary" (which is very thick) by Charlton T. Lewis. Near as I can determine neither book has made it on-line yet.

And yes, I figured that your post was ŝercema, which is why I attempted to respond in kind.

If you aren't having fun here, then you are doing it wrong. :D


Oh yeah, I soo agree with you! And thanks again!


Would "crooked" be acceptable for "fia"?


Yes, but not as a primary definition.


I vote for "nogoodnik" as the translation of "fiulo".


Oh, dear Duo. Here you are teaching us bad words.

PIV diras:

fi! I- Interj., esprimanta malestimon k abomenon

-aĉ/1. I- Suf. esprimanta senvalorigon (pro malbela aspekto, maltaŭgeco, malbona kvalito aŭ karaktero ks)

"Aĉ" comments on poor quality and at least comes with some pity and recognizes subjectivity, "fi" comments on poor moral character and is completely contemptuous and presents itself as an objective judgement. The best English equivalents are often taboo, and I find it really interesting that "fi" makes for some of the strongest invective.

So, and apologies for the English, "homaĉo" is a poor little shit but "fiulo" is a f****ng worthless shit. Be careful with it.

The other odd thing is that "fi" is not too terribly taboo. It's okay to call out badness, especially badness of actions. Just remember that "fi" is how you scold a dog, and "ne" is how you disagree with someone you have at least a little respect for.


Tiu ĉi homo ^^^ komprenas.

(Malrapida aplaŭdo)

Ankaŭ ĉu oni konas pri ia uzado de malfiamalaĉa?


A bad man is a bad person - accepted :)


What is the difference between evil person and evil doer ?


To me an evil person is someone whose thoughts and intentions are evil or malicious. Alternatively an evil doer is someone who actively does something which is evil (probably from the perspective of the speaker) although I don't think an "evil doer" necessary has to have evil intentions. So for me one is about thought or intent and the other is about action.


A foul bloke is a rotter (slightly dated British English, but of my generation).

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