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handwriting upon the wall

Spanish translation: presagio

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:handwriting upon the wall
Spanish translation:presagio
Entered by: Graciela Guzman
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17:52 May 21, 2005
English to Spanish translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Religion
English term or phrase: handwriting upon the wall
In a church denomination's statement of faith:

"...The signs of the times are as a 'handwriting upon the wall,' foretelling us what the future will bring." (Obvious reference to Daniel 5:5ff in the Bible) Is there any Spanish equivalent to this idiomatic phrase? Thanks!
Bill Greendyk
United States
Local time: 02:50
presagio
Explanation:
Hi, Bill,
I don't know an equivalent in Spanish for the idiomatic phrase. What you see in the Bible is "escritura en la pared" but in Spanish it's "presagio"
Selected response from:

Graciela Guzman
Argentina
Local time: 03:50
Grading comment
¡Presagio! Precisamente. Como el texto no hace ninguna referencia a la historia bíblica de Daniel 5, sino hace uso de un modismo bien común en el inglés, lo cual refiere precisamente a un "presagio", es la respuesta más adecuada. De todos modos, ¡¡gracias a Luis y a todos los demás por su ayuda siempre!! Bill :)
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +4escrito/escritura en la pared
Luis Zepeda
5 +1tener los días contados
Miguel Falquez-Certain
4 +1"escritura en la pared" (un signo ominoso)
aivars
4 +1presagio
Graciela Guzman
4son [como] una señal/ prueba /manifestación...
Denise De Pe�a
4evidentes
Santisanz
4escritura/ escrito a mano/ manuscrito en la pared
Maria Boschero


Discussion entries: 2





  

Answers


1 min   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +4
escrito/escritura en la pared


Explanation:
It's a common expression meanaing "it's been said before"

Luis Zepeda
United States
Local time: 23:50
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Legalmed: It seems "menetekel" is also used in Spanish, very seldomly though.
17 mins

neutral  Santisanz: The expression is not very common in Spain...
24 mins

agree  JaneTranslates: My Bible has a section title of "El escrito en la pared." But if the common meaning is "it's been said before," then it wouldn't be appropriate in the context.
35 mins

agree  Joaquim Siles-Borràs: To me, this sounds ok. It maintains the ref. to the book of Daniel and maintains the meaning in this context.
1 hr

agree  Leticia Klemetz, CT: "la escritura en la pared" es lo que dice Reina Valera. Sin embargo, no tenemos esta frase ni ninguna similar como algo "idiomático" que yo sepa
2 hrs
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2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
escritura/ escrito a mano/ manuscrito en la pared


Explanation:
Suerte!

Maria Boschero
Argentina
Local time: 03:50
Works in field
Native speaker of: Spanish
PRO pts in category: 8
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26 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
tener los días contados


Explanation:
Se refiere a la interpretación de Daniel, a petición de Belsasar, de Mene, mene, telkel,uparsin escrito en lo encalado de la pared por mano desconocida. Su interpretación: Mene, contó Dios tu reino, y le ha puesto fin. Tekel: pesado has sido en balanza, y fuiste hallado falto. Peres: tu reino ha sido roto, y dado a los medos y a los persas. La misma noche fue muerto Belsasar rey de los caldeos. Y Darío de Media tomó el reino. Daniel 5:5-31.

Miguel Falquez-Certain
United States
Local time: 02:50
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  JaneTranslates: But the reference to Daniel is not as clear as in English, so you might want to add a parenthetical (Dan. 5:5-31) or mention Belsasar. Later: I meant Bill, in his translation, might want to do that. Sorry.
7 mins
  -> Thank you. I did mention Belsasar and Daniel 5:5-31.
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30 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
evidentes


Explanation:
I would suggest "evidentes" or "claros para todos" (see Luke 12, 54ff), for that I believe there isn't an equivalent idiom in European Spanish. It depends on the country you translate for.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr 8 mins (2005-05-21 19:01:06 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

\"The signs of the times are as a \'handwriting upon the wall,\' foretelling us what the future will bring.\"

\"Los signos de los tiempos son evidentes y nos anticipan lo que nos deparará el futuro\"

I\'ve heard many times the idiom \"signos de los tiempos\" in religious contexts. That\'s the reason I think it\'s a well-known idiom, even if \'handwritten upon the wall\' not.

Santisanz
Local time: 08:50
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish, Native in GermanGerman
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
"escritura en la pared" (un signo ominoso)


Explanation:
Por un lado está la "escritura en la pared" o lo "escrito en la pared" que sería la versión bíblica de Daniel 5 en español. El problema de traducción se presenta cuando "escritura en la pared" no se ha convertido en un cliché como "handwritting on the wall" que se aplica a signo ominoso, a ver algo terrible. Mi solución sería poner la cita bíblica para que el lector no se pierda y entre paréntesis el significado del cliché.

aivars
Argentina
Local time: 03:50
Works in field
Native speaker of: Spanish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  carlie602
1 day4 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
son [como] una señal/ prueba /manifestación...


Explanation:
de lo que nos depara el futuro...

Denise De Pe�a
Guatemala
Local time: 00:50
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in SpanishSpanish
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11 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
presagio


Explanation:
Hi, Bill,
I don't know an equivalent in Spanish for the idiomatic phrase. What you see in the Bible is "escritura en la pared" but in Spanish it's "presagio"

Graciela Guzman
Argentina
Local time: 03:50
Native speaker of: Spanish
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
¡Presagio! Precisamente. Como el texto no hace ninguna referencia a la historia bíblica de Daniel 5, sino hace uso de un modismo bien común en el inglés, lo cual refiere precisamente a un "presagio", es la respuesta más adecuada. De todos modos, ¡¡gracias a Luis y a todos los demás por su ayuda siempre!! Bill :)

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  CNF: Exacto.
1 day10 hrs
  -> Muchas gracias, Natalia!
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