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en faire son cheval de bataille

English translation: hobby-horse

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:cheval de bataille
English translation:hobby-horse
Entered by: Yolanda Broad
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

09:45 May 22, 2003
French to English translations [Non-PRO]
French term or phrase: en faire son cheval de bataille
elle a fait de sa folie son cheval...
rodriguez
it all depends on context
Explanation:
Is the tone of the context critical/sarcastic, etc? Or is it objective/neutral? Or even sympathetic?
What sort of "folie" is it? Is it severe mental illness or actual "madness", or is it is some eccentric "folly"?

Dependingon all of this, elle a fait de sa folie son cheval can mean:
- her madness became her hobby-horse [critical/sarcastic interpretation]
- she kept harping on about her madness [_very_ critical/sarcastic interpretation]
- she raved on about her madness [_very_ sarcastic interpretation]
- her madness became her main/favourite theme ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became the all-important issue for her ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became her key issue ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became her main concern ["neutral", maybe sympathetic interpretation]

"madness" could be replaced by "folly" in most of the above, depending on the context.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-22 13:47:01 (GMT)
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OR
- she rattled on and on about her madness [a real bitchy version!]
OR [depending on the tense, etc.]:
- she began to rattle on and on about her madness
Selected response from:

Peter McCavana
France
Local time: 11:42
Grading comment
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +6it all depends on contextPeter McCavana
5 +1she made her madness her pet subjectmckinnc
4 +2she made it her hobbyhorseCaroline Mackay-Sim
3 +2She was obsessed with her own madness
Christopher Crockett
5Her craziness has become her real ax to grind [withthe world]Jane Lamb-Ruiz
4 +1Her (own) madness became her cause.
Jean-Luc Dumont
4 +1To ride a subject to deathGerardP
5consider it as her first thing in life
Diana Donzelli-Gaudet
4 +1the main topic (of discussion)Elisabeth Toda-v.Galen
3 +1she goes on endlessly
Lanna Castellano


Discussion entries: 2





  

Answers


3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
consider it as her first thing in life


Explanation:
consider it as her first thing in life

Diana Donzelli-Gaudet
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: Native in ItalianItalian, Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 68
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37 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
the main topic (of discussion)


Explanation:
cheval de bataille : argument polemique auquel on revient sans cesse

Elisabeth Toda-v.Galen
France
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 268

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Peter McCavana: Yes, that's one possibility
15 mins
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50 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
she goes on endlessly


Explanation:
she goes on endlessly about her madness

Lanna Castellano
Local time: 10:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 377

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Peter McCavana: Yes, that's one possibility, if it is in a critical tone
1 min
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +6
it all depends on context


Explanation:
Is the tone of the context critical/sarcastic, etc? Or is it objective/neutral? Or even sympathetic?
What sort of "folie" is it? Is it severe mental illness or actual "madness", or is it is some eccentric "folly"?

Dependingon all of this, elle a fait de sa folie son cheval can mean:
- her madness became her hobby-horse [critical/sarcastic interpretation]
- she kept harping on about her madness [_very_ critical/sarcastic interpretation]
- she raved on about her madness [_very_ sarcastic interpretation]
- her madness became her main/favourite theme ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became the all-important issue for her ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became her key issue ["neutral" interpretation]
- her madness became her main concern ["neutral", maybe sympathetic interpretation]

"madness" could be replaced by "folly" in most of the above, depending on the context.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-05-22 13:47:01 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

OR
- she rattled on and on about her madness [a real bitchy version!]
OR [depending on the tense, etc.]:
- she began to rattle on and on about her madness

Peter McCavana
France
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 100

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  writeaway: great demonstration about the importance of context. Is it a real 'folie' or is 'folie' just the opinion of the writer?
7 mins
  -> Thanks very much (for agreeing _and_ for the compliment). At least I'm not _totally_ wasting my time! ;-)

agree  Sara Noss
1 hr
  -> Thanks. As you can see, the need for proper context is _my_ hobby-horse! ;-)

agree  apancake
1 hr

agree  Elisabeth Toda-v.Galen
2 hrs

agree  sktrans
3 hrs

agree  Jean-Luc Dumont: Chapau ! this was a jolly ride jor the subfect :-) not to taken the topic lightly- tone and context , gee up!
8 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
To ride a subject to death


Explanation:
C'est la traduction souvent utilisée pour cheval de bataille. (voir le Collins). Ici, "she rides her madness to death.

GerardP
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 73

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Peter McCavana: A nice alternative (but maybe an unfortunate turn of phrase?).
1 hr

neutral  Jean-Luc Dumont: I agree with Peter, sounds like a "ride to the ground" :-)
11 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
she made it her hobbyhorse


Explanation:
Her madness became her hobbyhorse

sa preoccupation principale

Caroline Mackay-Sim
Local time: 19:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 96

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  lien
1 hr

agree  Jean-Luc Dumont: already given by Peter in his extensive list of options based on degree of "possession" :-)
9 hrs
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3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
she made her madness her pet subject


Explanation:
She talked about it all the time

or if you prefer "She never stopped referring to her madness"

mckinnc
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 922

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  1045
3 hrs
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
She was obsessed with her own madness


Explanation:
Taking into account Peter's good caveats, but following Colin's lead and getting away from the "war horse" simile altogether.
Milder : "She was preoccupied with her own madness..."

Christopher Crockett
Local time: 05:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 436

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Jean-Luc Dumont: that's a vicious...circle - quite appropriate
7 hrs
  -> Well, the girl *is* nuts, after all. Thanks, J-L.

agree  xxxntouzet
7 hrs
  -> Thanks, Nadine.
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
Her craziness has become her real ax to grind [withthe world]


Explanation:
D'abord je prefere craziness a moins que cette personne est psychotique...

to have an ax to grind pourrait tres bien etre une traduction de faire son cheval de bataille


normalement,on dit: I have an ax to grind with Y

mais ici on peut le dire ainsi...

Jane Lamb-Ruiz
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in PortuguesePortuguese
PRO pts in pair: 8576

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Christopher Crockett: That's too sharp for me, Jane.
4 hrs
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11 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Her (own) madness became her cause.


Explanation:
depending on rest of text : cheval de bataille may also have the meaning of cause - as in just cause that someone decides to take pu and fight for

She decided that her own mental problems it is in the context - or folly - in a different context - would because a cause she would tackle/ like to fight for a cause - against a social problem or a disease

La cause d'une vie... - [ Translate this page ]
... Une cause, dit-il, plus valorisante que n'importe laquelle autre question qu ... il a
donc choisi de faire de la prévention son tout nouveau cheval de bataille. ...

Britannia Biographies: Margaret of Anjou (1429-1482), Queen of ...
... When these were gone, two successive Dukes of Somerset became her favourites
and the policy of the Court, against the Duke of York, became her cause. ...
www.britannia.com/bios/manjou.html - 29k - Cached - Similar pages

About Imagination Celebration - KCIC Staff
... moved to so frequently. When Colorado Springs became their permanent
home, the arts of the region became her cause. Mary has helped ...
www.imaginationcelebration.org/about/staff.html - 19k - Cached - Similar pages

David's Blog - www.frontpagemag.com
... official -- I ripped down her sign. Naturally this became her cause
of the day and probably the day after. One of my missions in ...
www.frontpagemag.com/blog/printable.asp?ID=75 - 6k - Cached - Similar pages

New Book
... Three sisters, three lives and the suffering they endured. Driven by her feeling
for abused children and pregnant teenagers, their plight became her cause. ...
www.awakeningwomen.org/book.html - 17k - Cached - Similar pages


Jean-Luc Dumont
France
Local time: 11:42
Native speaker of: French
PRO pts in pair: 1108

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christopher Crockett: Yes, if she wasn't quite Obsessed with it.
17 hrs
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