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Good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.

English translation: if you're a good boy and read your books you will be a great man in the future/one day

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14:15 Oct 20, 2006
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Idioms / Maxims / Sayings / Abraham Lincoln
English term or phrase: Good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.
Can someone write this sentence in a way a 5 year old kid would be able to comprehend?:)

Thx
alen botica
Local time: 20:11
English translation:if you're a good boy and read your books you will be a great man in the future/one day
Explanation:
I would say

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Note added at 4 mins (2006-10-20 14:20:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

you can add a comma afeter "books" if you like ....

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 mins (2006-10-20 14:21:30 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

this should be understandable for a 5 year old kid
Selected response from:

David Hollywood
Local time: 15:11
Grading comment
that's correct I didn't think the word "whom" might even be a misquote... but now it all made sense after Rachel's findings
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +4if you're a good boy and read your books you will be a great man in the future/one day
David Hollywood
5 +2if you study hard, you will go far/do great/be successful in life
Bonita Mc Donald
5 +1if you study hard you will have a great future/be a succesful man somedayCristina Chaplin
4when lessons in their books are learned by talented boys, these boys will be great men before long.
Erich Ekoputra


Discussion entries: 2





  

Answers


3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +2
good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.
if you study hard, you will go far/do great/be successful in life


Explanation:
Id be inclined to use go far. I know some five-year-olds who would understand the word successful, but to appeal to all children go far might be better

Bonita Mc Donald
Local time: 12:11
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Caryl Swift: Yes, I think that 'apply yourself to your books'here means study hard. :-)
3 hrs

agree  xxxAlfa Trans
1 day4 hrs
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1 min   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.
if you're a good boy and read your books you will be a great man in the future/one day


Explanation:
I would say

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 4 mins (2006-10-20 14:20:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

you can add a comma afeter "books" if you like ....

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 mins (2006-10-20 14:21:30 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

this should be understandable for a 5 year old kid

David Hollywood
Local time: 15:11
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 24
Grading comment
that's correct I didn't think the word "whom" might even be a misquote... but now it all made sense after Rachel's findings

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Craig Meulen: if your "translation" is right, surely in the original the first part should then read "good books who to their books apply" - the use of whom means that the books apply to the boys, not that the boys apply themselves to the books // see comment above
5 mins
  -> thanks for your comment Craig and maybe it's just me but I think my interpretation makes sense and is a suitable register for a little boy :)

agree  Jack Doughty
1 hr
  -> thanks Jack :)

agree  Ken Cox: IMO 'apply' is stronger than 'read' -- it's closer to 'study'
1 hr
  -> thanks Ken :) I went for "read" as it gets the message across and is direct

agree  Richard Benham: Actually I think "apply" (presumably themselves) is stronger than "study": it means to study diligently.
3 hrs
  -> thanks Richard :)
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29 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.
if you study hard you will have a great future/be a succesful man someday


Explanation:
nice and simple...

Cristina Chaplin
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:11
Native speaker of: Romanian

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Caryl Swift: Yes, I think that 'apply yourself to your books' here means study hard. :-)
3 hrs
  -> thank you Caryl!
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
good boys to whom to their books apply, will always be great men, by and by.
when lessons in their books are learned by talented boys, these boys will be great men before long.


Explanation:
Well, what can be applied of a book? Surely, its content, or more popularly called "knowledge" or "lessons". But, these lessons will be wasteful when learned by people that are not talented, that are not good at learning it.

So, "good boy" is not a result. Instead, being good (= being talented) is a prerequisite to be a great man. Yet, being good is not enough; you should reap lessons from the book.

"by and by" can mean eventually or one day, a time far away in the future. But I prefer its other meaning: before long. When you're talented, and you get knowledge, before long you'll be something.



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Note added at 2 hrs (2006-10-20 16:22:34 GMT)
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Opppsss, I overlooked RachelV's note. If that is the true original text, pls disregard this answer!

Erich Ekoputra
Indonesia
Local time: 01:11
Native speaker of: Native in IndonesianIndonesian
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