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v myshinii glazok - khvostik lampadi

English translation: one more possible way to read this

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19:02 Mar 11, 2004
Russian to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
Russian term or phrase: v myshinii glazok - khvostik lampadi
circa 1900, novel set in Siberia.

Full phrase: stol' iarko pokazalos' emu tikhoe siyan'e - v myshinii glazok - khvostik lampadi.

I can understand that he is talking about seeing the 'end' of an icon-lamp.
I don't know what 'v myshinii glazok' means here. (in a mouse's eye'?!)

I also don't know is there is a word in English to describe the 'khvostik' of a 'lampadi'. I have seen pictures of lampadi from the time, and they do have bits dangling down, which I presume are what are being described as the 'khvostik'. Does anyone out there know their icon-lamps?
Emily Justice
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:51
English translation:one more possible way to read this
Explanation:
It would certainly help if you could provide a few phrases before and after the one you are asking about. Taken alone, it's not enough to read it in an inambigous way. Besides, it's not quite grammatically correct -- it should be "сияние... хвостикА лампады" (род.п.). Perhaps it's a typo.

I think that one more possible reading of the phrase is that "в мышиный глазок" refers to the size of the flickering tongue of the flame. Perhaps it's small -- especially if viewed from a distance.

As for "хвостик лампады", of course, Kirill's explanation is correct: it is describing the wick of the lamp.

Additional context would help.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr 39 mins (2004-03-11 20:41:29 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

=unambiguous, sorry
Selected response from:

Alya
Russian Federation
Local time: 07:51
Grading comment
Thanks to everyone who answered. This answer builds on Kirill's so a particular thanks to Kirill.
I am happy with the suggestion that the fickering end of the wick appears to be small as there is no indication in the preceding text that the man who sees the icon lamp is looking through a keyhole. The emphasis is on the room that he is in at that particular point - he had meant to go into his wife's room, to kill her, but finds himself in his daughter's room.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +2expl. below
Kirill Semenov
4 +1You may have to reconstruct the sentence
Montefiore
3 +1one more possible way to read this
Alya
3look below
Sergei Tumanov


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


9 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
expl. below


Explanation:
"Myshinyj glazok" is a tiny peephole through which the character sees the icon-lamp. It may be an eyehole in a door or something like this.

"khvostik: an icon-lamp is a little pot filled with oil. Also, it has a candlewick with one of its end sinking into the oil and the other burning. This burning end is the "khvostik" here.

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Note added at 15 mins (2004-03-11 19:17:44 GMT)
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It may be not lit in the context, but still it is pricking up as a small tail.

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Note added at 21 mins (2004-03-11 19:23:50 GMT)
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Aha, sorry, it\'s lit: \"tichoe siyanie\" means a placid, still, not very bright but steady burning (usual for an icon-lamp).

Kirill Semenov
Ukraine
Local time: 07:51
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 381

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Alya: very plausible
1 hr
  -> thank you :)

agree  George Vardanyan
12 hrs
  -> спасибо :)
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
one more possible way to read this


Explanation:
It would certainly help if you could provide a few phrases before and after the one you are asking about. Taken alone, it's not enough to read it in an inambigous way. Besides, it's not quite grammatically correct -- it should be "сияние... хвостикА лампады" (род.п.). Perhaps it's a typo.

I think that one more possible reading of the phrase is that "в мышиный глазок" refers to the size of the flickering tongue of the flame. Perhaps it's small -- especially if viewed from a distance.

As for "хвостик лампады", of course, Kirill's explanation is correct: it is describing the wick of the lamp.

Additional context would help.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr 39 mins (2004-03-11 20:41:29 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

=unambiguous, sorry

Alya
Russian Federation
Local time: 07:51
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 36
Grading comment
Thanks to everyone who answered. This answer builds on Kirill's so a particular thanks to Kirill.
I am happy with the suggestion that the fickering end of the wick appears to be small as there is no indication in the preceding text that the man who sees the icon lamp is looking through a keyhole. The emphasis is on the room that he is in at that particular point - he had meant to go into his wife's room, to kill her, but finds himself in his daughter's room.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Kirill Semenov: also possible (as for the small size of the tongue)
9 hrs
  -> спасибо :)
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

12 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
You may have to reconstruct the sentence


Explanation:
My view: he sees the burning of a thin wick as "silent brilliance" - exagerrated, or enhanced by the small opening through which he is witnessing it. It's very poetic. There is no typo, no mistake - the light appears more brilliant when observed through a tiny peephole, precisely because it's the light you can actually see, perhaps, after a long period of [metaphorical] darkness. Suddenly it's all illuminated.

Because the peephole is so tiny, the light appears bigger and brighter than if it were observed unobstructed by the boundaries imposed by the hole. It's a metaphor for someone's epiphany, a sudden illumination of events that otherwise may have seemed incomprehensible, or too dark and hopeless. Now that he is able to see the bright, "quiet," "peaceful" light, he has suddenly received a revelation of sorts, a light has been shed on his/other situation or quandary.

I am just suggesting the meaning here as I don't know the preceding text or the context.

I would reconstruct the sentence as follows:

The shimmering light of the oil lamp that he beheld through the tiny keyhole/peephole appeared so brilliant to him.../had the quality of silent brilliance

Or - another version:

The light of the oil lamp, tbe burning wick observed through a keyhole, appeared as a silent brilliance...

I want to say, that, as I was writing this, I suddenly realized that there is a double entendre here in English being formed when you use the word 'brilliance," as it may also suggest intelligence, and, in this context, "illumination" of the intellectual sort, the illumination of the mind, a new look on things, etc...let alone faith...as we are talking of the oil lamp associated with "lampada."

If you want to be precise you can add "a keyhole the size of a mouse's eye." Although, I would rather have chosen to omit it.


Montefiore
United States
Local time: 21:51
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Сергей Лузан
1 day12 hrs
  -> спасибо, Сергей
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13 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
look below


Explanation:
I think here "v myshinyj glazok-khvostik" should be "razmerom v myshinyj glazok-khvostik" = as tiny as a mouse eye or tail"

the character saw the brillance of a tiny lamp (small as a mouse eye actually was its fire) as of big one.

Sergei Tumanov
Local time: 07:51
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 12
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