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Ce n'est pas à un singe qu'on apprend à faire les grimaces

English translation: Dont' teach your grandmother to suck eggs

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16:13 Jun 10, 2002
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary
French term or phrase: Ce n'est pas à un singe qu'on apprend à faire les grimaces
It is an idiomatic expression I guess. I need help with translation it to English. What would be the best translation? Thank you.
Sergey
United States
Local time: 08:36
English translation:Dont' teach your grandmother to suck eggs
Explanation:
Idiomatic proverb



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Note added at 2002-06-10 16:27:23 (GMT)
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PLs read don\'t ... i/o dont\'
Selected response from:

Thierry LOTTE
Local time: 17:36
Grading comment
This fits the context perfectly, many thanks...
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
5 +9Dont' teach your grandmother to suck eggs
Thierry LOTTE
4 +3you don't teach a monkey how to grimace
swisstell
5 +2You can't teach an old dog new tricks
Eva Blanar
4Don't teach your grandmother to suck eggs
Jack Doughty


  

Answers


6 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
you don't teach a monkey how to grimace


Explanation:
straight and kiss

swisstell
Italy
Local time: 17:36
Native speaker of: German
PRO pts in pair: 921

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  smtaylor
2 mins
  -> thanks

agree  Adalbert Kowal
3 mins
  -> thanks

neutral  Thierry LOTTE: means nothing - word to word translation not always works it out....
6 mins
  -> I know that, Thierry, I was not born yesterday. But here it makes sense.

agree  Armen Ayvazyan: I do agree, the translator is not entitled to introduce into a translation a term than is covered by the same semantic field as in the original, though the proverbs given below may be regarded as quasi-equivalent thereof
39 mins
  -> thanks, Armen

neutral  Frazer Clark: I must admit that as a native speaker, this doesn't sound very natural to me. I'd go with the 'grandmother and eggs' (or perhaps 'preaching to the converted', depending on context). Cheers, :o) Frazer
1 hr
  -> perhaps "you d'ont teach as monkey how to climb a tree" might sound "more natural" to you?
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10 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +9
Dont' teach your grandmother to suck eggs


Explanation:
Idiomatic proverb



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2002-06-10 16:27:23 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

PLs read don\'t ... i/o dont\'


    Oxford diccionary
    french native
Thierry LOTTE
Local time: 17:36
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 87
Grading comment
This fits the context perfectly, many thanks...

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  DPolice
7 mins
  -> Merci DPolice

agree  irat56: Much better!
10 mins
  -> Merci Irat56

agree  Eva Blanar: "On n'apprend pas a un vieux singe a faire la grimace." - This is the most common form of this proverb.
19 mins
  -> Merci Eva

agree  Sheila Hardie
56 mins
  -> Merci sheila

agree  Lise Boismenu, B.Sc.
58 mins
  -> merci Lise

agree  Frazer Clark: That's the one. Or perhaps in this precise context, 'You don't teach your grandmother to suck eggs.' (Original is statement rather than imperative). :o) F
1 hr
  -> Tks Frazer

agree  Jane Lamb-Ruiz: I wonder if this really has the status of "proverb" can't be more than 20 years old!
1 hr
  -> Tks jane - in French, it is really a proverb I always heard it and I am now over 50 years old

agree  Paul Mably
1 hr
  -> Tks Paul

agree  markmx: what a great expression in French, and what a clever translation into English
6 hrs
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14 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Don't teach your grandmother to suck eggs


Explanation:
An old English saying meaning much the same - don't try to teach something to someone who knows how to do it better than you do.

Jack Doughty
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:36
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 28
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46 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +2
You can't teach an old dog new tricks


Explanation:
This is another version of the same proverb. (See below for a very nics webpage.)

It is, by the way, in this sense, that Serge Regiiani used this proverb is "Le vieux singe":

J'amus' les goss's, je perds mes poils
J'ai la grimace commerciale
J'fais mon métier
De chimpanzé
Mais si je joue aujourd'hui
De l'orgue de Barbarie
Moi, j'ai suivi pas plus haut qu'ça
Mon père sur les baobabs
Il m'a perdu, je suis tombé
Sur des sauvag's civilisés
Qui m'ont traîné sur l'océan
Un' forêt d'eau, un fleuv' géant
Qui s'jette en Franc' près de Bordeaux
Pas loin de Médrano

C'est pas à moi, bonne gens
Qu'on apprend
A fair' la grimace
C'est pas à moi qu'on apprend sur quell' patte il faut danser
Il faut pas croire
J'ai connu la gloire
Et si ça passe
Ça m'est bien égal
C'est déjà pas mal
Qu'elle soit passée

J'ai connu la saison des pluies
Cell' des étés loin du pays
Pour oublier
J'ai travaillé
Et j'ai si bien travaillé
Que j'ai vraiment oublié
Et on a vu du jamais vu
Le singe à barb', le singe obus
Quand je faisais le saut d'la mort
Les gens criaient " Encore-Encore "
Quand les ringards se défilaient
Moi, je travaillais sans filet
On m'a copié
C'est le métier
Mais jamais égalé

C'est pas à moi, bonnes gens
Qu'on apprend
A fair' la grimace
C'est pas à moi qu'on apprend sur quell' patte il faut danser
Il faut pas croire
J'ai connu la gloire
Et si ça passe
Ça m'est bien égal
C'est déjà pas mal
Qu'ell' soit passée

Un jour on n'a plus crié " bis "
Y'a pas d'zoo à Ris-Orangis
Et puis d'ailleurs
A votr' bon coeur
La fac' cachée de l'affiche
Même un vieux singe s'en fiche

C'est pas à moi, bonnes gens qu'on apprend à fair' la grimace
C'est pas à moi qu'on apprend sur quell' patte il faut danser
Et si ce soir, ce n'est pas la gloire si le temps passe
Ça m'est bien égal, ça n'me fait plus mal, c'est du passé




    Reference: http://membres.lycos.fr/jpcharp/sayings.htm
Eva Blanar
Hungary
Local time: 17:36
Native speaker of: Hungarian
PRO pts in pair: 109

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sheila Hardie: that's the one I was thinking of:)
20 mins
  -> Thanks: this one is deeper, isn't it?

disagree  Frazer Clark: Sorry to disagree, but I think the 'old dog/new tricks' phrase means that someone is too set in their ways to take on board new ideas. The 'grandmother/eggs' one, however, means somebody's knowledge/skills are innate or taken for granted (as here).
21 mins
  -> No need to say sorry: I visit these pages to learn. Actually, this old/new thing never occurred to me, perhaps because of the quoted Serge Reggiani-song (or because I am old myself).

agree  Alexandra Harmer: this is the one that comes naturally to me too
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Alexandra.

agree  Pascale Dahan: This one I can understand, never understood the grandmother and eggs:)
1 day2 hrs
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