KudoZ home » English » Poetry & Literature

instant scurvy

English translation: immediate illness

Advertisement

Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs
(or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
12:36 Mar 3, 2004
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
English term or phrase: instant scurvy
to give the context: "Go down there," she points at her feet, "instant scurvy" (They're out on the sea, the sea is rouhg, and below are the seasick passengers)
dalg?c
Local time: 18:47
English translation:immediate illness
Explanation:
scurvy is a disease caused by lack of vitamin C

instant = immediate, spontaneous

here it seems to mean that if the person 'goes down' s/he will virtually become ill immediately
Selected response from:

Cilian O'Tuama
Local time: 17:47
Grading comment
thanks, this was helpful
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

Advertisement


Summary of answers provided
4 +2immediate illness
Cilian O'Tuama
3 +3I think there is an additional dimension to this, namely ...
Hermeneutica
4 +1You'll immediately catch scurvy, a disease caused by lack of vitamin C in the dietxxxElena Sgarbo
5see comment below
Hacene
3 +1instant heaves/
Gerard Michael Burns
2 +2Scurvy is not instant
Lars Helbig
4sudden deficiency
swisstell


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


7 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
immediate illness


Explanation:
scurvy is a disease caused by lack of vitamin C

instant = immediate, spontaneous

here it seems to mean that if the person 'goes down' s/he will virtually become ill immediately

Cilian O'Tuama
Local time: 17:47
Works in field
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 24
Grading comment
thanks, this was helpful

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Jonathan MacKerron: that is indeed the deep structure, I don't think the author even intends to make a point of whether or not scurvy occurs instantly
2 hrs

agree  vixen: Besides, scurvy is typically associated with seamen on long journeys.
20 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
sudden deficiency


Explanation:
.. in this case of vitamine C

swisstell
Italy
Local time: 17:47
Works in field
Native speaker of: German
PRO pts in category: 16
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

13 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
You'll immediately catch scurvy, a disease caused by lack of vitamin C in the diet


Explanation:
Hi Dalgýc

Scurvy is the condition caused by chronic lack of vitamin C. Scurvy was very common among sea crews in the past, because sailors would spend months at sea with no supply of vitamin C. Thus many seamen would develop scurvy, characterized by spongy gums & loosening (and loss) of the teeth, as well as easy skin bleeding from superficial scratches.

You'll be probably able to tell why the speaker is warning the other person about "instant scurvy" -a metaphor, since scurvy is never instantaneous. (In the speaker statement there might be a pejorative implication).

HTH

Elena

xxxElena Sgarbo
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Gerard Michael Burns: doesn't fit the context
1 hr
  -> You may need to read my explanation, esp. the last statement, along the lines of Dee's :-)

agree  Özden Arıkan: many turkish terms related to navigation and the sea come from spanish, indeed. well, when you need to learn something new, the best way is to learn it from the master of the domain ;)
14 hrs
  -> Thank you, Xola! Interesting comment, that "scurvy" is "iskorbüt" in Turkish-- in Spanish is "escorbuto". Tx :-)
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

19 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
I think there is an additional dimension to this, namely ...


Explanation:
... an implication of a "second class" type of "citizen". Scurvy used to affect the working sailors in sailing ships due to malnutrition, [the East London "limeys" were English sailors thus called because of their consumption of limes while on sea voyages] and the people in the lower decks are likened to those "travelling steerage" as immigrants did in the early years of the century.

You'll be best able to determine from the context whether this applies or not, but scurvy does not develop instantaneously, nor is it common in the Western world in this day and age.

In other words, it might mean something like "if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen", or, "if you're not gonna make it up here, go down to the 'lower classes'".

HTH

Dee

Hermeneutica
Switzerland
Local time: 17:47
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish, Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
5 mins
  -> Hi Vicky! Thank you!

agree  hookmv: Context is too limited, but I think this is the best answer.
2 hrs
  -> Thanks very much!

agree  Özden Arıkan: given the toooo limited context, this may sound even far-fetched though, but my instinct says you're right about the class connection :)
14 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

29 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): +2
Scurvy is not instant


Explanation:
Scurvy is not instant.

Scurvy normally takes some time to develope and it usually is not associated with sea-sickness. By the time you get your first symptons of scurvy, you usually have been at sea long enough to overcome your sea-sickness.

Maybee she is exagertaing or being metaphorical. A humorus comment on the passangers eating habits pehaps? Or she might be saying, that if the passengers don't overcome their seasickness soon their haelth will suffer.

It is also possible, that the charcter (or pehaps the author writing her) simply has no idea, what she is talking about.

Some more context might help shed some light on this.

Lars Helbig
Germany
Local time: 17:47
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Charlie Bavington: with the "no idea what talking about" bit !! The speaker is ignorant (deliberately? who knows) and it's just an attempt to draw a parallel between the current situation (seasickness) and another bad nautical situation (the times when scurvy was rife)
1 hr

agree  humbird: Yes, scurvy is a malady of olden day seafarers where supply fresh veges/fruits (souce of Vitamin C) was scarece. It develops over time. It appears the conversation was jokingly carried out or in allusion.
6 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
instant heaves/


Explanation:
I'm pretty sure the use of "scurvy" is mistaken, given the context- It sounds like the writer wanted to use something that sounded "nautical" and didn't know the real meaning of the word chosen.
As others have pointed out it isn't something even conceivably "instant".

Gerard Michael Burns
Paraguay
Local time: 11:47
Native speaker of: English

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Nancy Arrowsmith: is possible...
1 hr
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
see comment below


Explanation:
scurvy was an illness related to the lack of vitamin intake during sea journeys in early maritime exploration. It's symptoms were vomiting, grey-greenish coloration of the face, bleeding gums, extreme weakness. Here the writer is referring to the fact that those who are sea sick have similar symptoms (facial coloration, nausea, inability to fulfil any duty). The only difference is that scurvy requested 3 weeks minimum before becoming visible.

Hacene
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:47
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 12
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


KudoZ™ translation help
The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.



See also:



Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search