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Malheureux!

English translation: You fool! / You idiot! / You twit! / You cretin!

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:Malheureux!
English translation:You fool! / You idiot! / You twit! / You cretin!
Entered by: kironne
Options:
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21:12 Mar 29, 2007
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
French term or phrase: Malheureux!
Dans son bureau, un technicien est en train de triturer son ordinateur.

-Malheureux! Qu'est-ce que vous faites?
-J'essaie de sauver votre disque dur.

"Poor guy" doesn't seem to work here. Any other suggestions?

The speaker is kind of a condescending guy and is having a run of bad luck.
Tegan Raleigh
United States
Local time: 03:12
(You) fool!
Explanation:


IMHO, I think he's directly addressing the man himself, not just commenting on the unfortunate situation.

In Spanish, he would have probably said
"¡Infeliz! ¿Qué estás haciendo??"
and I think it applies here as well.
Selected response from:

kironne
Chile
Local time: 07:12
Grading comment
thanks! i went with the more colloquial "twit", but your answer was very informative
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +13(You) fool!
kironne
4 +4You idiot!
Katarina Peters
5 +3For goodness sake/ my goodness...Nathalie Scharf
3 +5What the hell are you doing ?Jerome Elhaik
5 +2You wretch! What do you think you're doing?Anna Maria Augustine at proZ.com
4 +3Imbecile/moron/dummy
rousselures
3 +4Cretin!
Tony M
3 +3oh no!!
Jenny Duthie
2 +4You fool !Céline Débiton
3 +3Oh God !What do you think you are doing !iol
4Too bad! (in the US)
David Hollywood
3What DO you think you're doing?Melzie
3What on earth are you doing?
Olli Leroy
2Hard luck!Swatchka


Discussion entries: 3





  

Answers


2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5
Hard luck!


Explanation:
As in "quel malheur"

Swatchka
Spain
Local time: 12:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Marc Glinert: I wwouldn't have thought so
11 hrs
  -> Yep, there are better options. I just couldn't think of something that wasn't offensive....:))
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5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +5
What the hell are you doing ?


Explanation:
I don't think it is necessary to translate malheureux here, but rather use expressions such as:
What the hell are you doing ?
It think it renders the meaning fairly well.

Jerome Elhaik
Local time: 12:12
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M
15 mins

agree  1045
4 hrs

agree  Paul Cohen: Or: What the hell do you think you're doing?
5 hrs

agree  Istvan Nagy
11 hrs

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
14 hrs
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10 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +3
For goodness sake/ my goodness...


Explanation:
If one wants to avoid cursing words...

Nathalie Scharf
United States
Local time: 05:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in FrenchFrench

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxBourth: Yes, the M of "malheureux" may not be by chance. Shoot! (to be American about it), For Chrissake, strewth, yegods, etc., or Zounds, to be Shakespearean about it!
6 mins

neutral  Tony M: Oh, but for heaven's sake, this sounds so stilted and archaic, like something by Jessica Fletcher! // ?? Can't quite see Angela Lansbury calling anyone a 'cretin', somehow!
14 mins
  -> interesting comment from one who suggested "cretin"!

agree  1045
4 hrs

neutral  Marc Glinert: hmmm well, NatUS, my goodness belongs to a bygone era and surely it has to be "For goodness' sake". In any case, "For heaven's sake" is better.
11 hrs

agree  Istvan Nagy: But Malhereux! does not sound colloquial French either, does it? Ca se dit souvet aujourd'hui?
1 day1 hr
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11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
oh no!!


Explanation:
"oh no!! what are you doing?"
as I think what he means by the "malheureux" is "I don't believe it, not again" type of expression which I think can be easily transmitted by "oh no!"

Jenny Duthie
France
Local time: 12:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  xxxBourth: I like it.
6 mins

neutral  Tony M: I suppose that's what the captain of the Titanic said too..?
14 mins

neutral  Katarina Peters: too mild , for having your computer smashed by a technician...
34 mins

agree  1045
4 hrs

agree  Istvan Nagy
11 hrs
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17 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
Oh God !What do you think you are doing !


Explanation:
=

iol
France
Local time: 12:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: French
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M: Though it has to be said, Marc does have a point: adding blasphemy might not be appropriate...
4 mins
  -> Thanks Tony

agree  1045
4 hrs
  -> thanks

neutral  Marc Glinert: not sure that as translators we should be introducing blasphemy when the source text has none. But if we are, I would go for "Jesus!!!!"
11 hrs
  -> all right ; you have a point;

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
14 hrs
  -> thanks Vicky
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18 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Too bad! (in the US)


Explanation:
yet another option

David Hollywood
Local time: 07:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  writeaway: for Malheureux? I don't think so
1 hr

neutral  Katarina Peters: I concur with writeaway
4 hrs

neutral  1045: I don't think so, either. Sorry, David.
4 hrs

neutral  Marc Glinert: I'm with 1045
11 hrs
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24 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +4
Cretin!


Explanation:
I agree with Jerome who said that it probably shouldn't be rendered directly. But just in case you really do want to, surely the term is meant to be referring to the person himself?

In another era and another register, I'd have loved to have used the word "miscreant" or "miserable wretch!", but sadly neither of those seem to sit very well with a hard-disk scenario. So perhaps this would be a more 21st century alternative?

Tony M
France
Local time: 12:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 128

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Swatchka
22 mins
  -> Thanks, Swatchka!

agree  1045
4 hrs
  -> Thanks, 1045!

agree  Istvan Nagy: if you want an insult I would opt for this
11 hrs
  -> Thanks, Istvan! Yes, I suppose there might be an affectionate undertone, but basically an insult, indeed!

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
14 hrs
  -> Efharisto, Vicky!
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25 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +13
(You) fool!


Explanation:


IMHO, I think he's directly addressing the man himself, not just commenting on the unfortunate situation.

In Spanish, he would have probably said
"¡Infeliz! ¿Qué estás haciendo??"
and I think it applies here as well.

kironne
Chile
Local time: 07:12
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
thanks! i went with the more colloquial "twit", but your answer was very informative

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Nathalie Scharf: I hadn't thought of that but I like it!
1 min
  -> Thanks, Nat!

agree  Jacqui Audouy: Yep, or 'idiot' - I've always understoodw it this way when the comment was directed at me!
12 mins
  -> Thanks, Jacqui :)

agree  Swatchka: I had thought of it (also of "desgraciado").Saludos :))
22 mins
  -> Exactly. Thanks, Swatchka :)

agree  Gacela20
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Gacela

agree  writeaway
1 hr
  -> Thanks, writeaway

agree  1045
4 hrs
  -> Thanks, 1045

agree  Assimina Vavoula
7 hrs
  -> Thanks, Assimina

agree  Marc Glinert: If we accept that this is an insult and not a reflection on the situation, then yes this is probably the safest option
10 hrs
  -> Thanks, Marc

agree  nnaemeka Odimegwu
14 hrs
  -> Thanks, emeka

agree  Ben Gaia MA: I agree he is adressing the person. In NZ it would read "You f***wit! What the f*** are you tryna do?"
21 hrs
  -> Thanks, Ben

agree  Jock
1 day2 mins
  -> Thanks, Jock

agree  jean-jacques alexandre
3 days9 hrs
  -> Thanks, jean-jacques

agree  greekgawddess
4 days
  -> Thanks, greekgawddess
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26 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 2/5Answerer confidence 2/5 peer agreement (net): +4
You fool !


Explanation:
Je ne suis pas sûre, c'est peut-être un peu trop... mais sait-on jamais...

Céline Débiton
Local time: 12:12
Native speaker of: French

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  writeaway
1 hr
  -> merci :)

agree  Katarina Peters: ...more polite than my version...
4 hrs
  -> merci :)

agree  1045
4 hrs
  -> merci :)

agree  Assimina Vavoula
7 hrs
  -> merci :)
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40 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
What on earth are you doing?


Explanation:
Melt the two together. Gives a more fluent sentence.

Olli Leroy
Other
Local time: 11:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in DutchDutch

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  writeaway: "melt" what two together? what about "Malheureux". that is the actual question after all.
1 hr
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44 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
You idiot!


Explanation:
as in ...what the hell are you doing, you idiot?



Katarina Peters
Canada
Local time: 06:12
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in HungarianHungarian, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 14

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Judy Gregg
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Judy

agree  1045
4 hrs
  -> Thanks, 1045!

agree  suezen: the most natural for me anyway
11 hrs
  -> Thanks, suezen, I felt the same way

agree  Alison Jenner
12 hrs
  -> Thanks, Alison.
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +2
You wretch! What do you think you're doing?


Explanation:
This is precisely what is in the Harrap's double bilingual.

The person is not being called "idiot/crétin/enfoiré/salop but wretch is slightly more polite.

Anna Maria Augustine at proZ.com
France
Local time: 12:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in category: 4

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  1045: ... but it's "salaud" ...
2 hrs
  -> Ooops!

neutral  Emma Paulay: It's politer, but it also belongs in another century IMO
8 hrs
  -> OK

neutral  Marc Glinert: thanks as usual for brightening up our morning Anna Maria
8 hrs
  -> Doing my best and prefer "zounds"!

agree  Istvan Nagy: Is Malhereux! this century, Emma?
22 hrs
  -> Did they mean Malreux? Sorry, can't spell it.
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
Imbecile/moron/dummy


Explanation:
A few more suggestions.

"malheureux!" also means imbecile.

"• Malheureux! : interpellation par laquelle le locuteur dit à son interlocuteur qu’il le méprise ou le considère fou."
Antidote


rousselures
Canada
Local time: 06:12
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench, Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  1045
1 hr
  -> Thank you!

agree  Tony M
7 hrs
  -> Thank you Tony!

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
11 hrs
  -> Thank you Vicky!
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9 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
What DO you think you're doing?


Explanation:
said with capitals for the do and depending what the person saying it is like.

just to add to the pool

Melzie
Local time: 12:12
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 3

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  writeaway: and Malheureux?
30 mins
  -> All the distain exasperation etc. in the full sentence

neutral  Marc Glinert: Agree, but with writeaway
2 hrs
  -> All the distain exasperation etc. in the full sentence
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