maitre d'

English translation: maitre d' (avoiding both plural and direct possessive)

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:maitre d'
Selected answer:maitre d' (avoiding both plural and direct possessive)
Entered by: B D Finch

08:01 Jan 8, 2014
English language (monolingual) [PRO]
Food & Drink / question about spelling
English term or phrase: maitre d'
If possible, I want to avoid using the complete form (maitre d'hotel - with an accent on the "i"), so - describing the various roles of a maitre d', how should I write the possessive form of the plural - mailtre d's' ? It looks terrible!
ulvaferry
Local time: 19:33
maitre d' (avoiding both plural and direct possessive)
Explanation:
First of all, without any information about how this fits into a sentence, it's rather difficult to advise. However, I suggest that you might consider avoiding both the plural and a surfeit of apostrophes, e.g. "the skills of any maitre d' should include ... ".
Selected response from:

B D Finch
France
Local time: 19:33
Grading comment
2 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



SUMMARY OF ALL EXPLANATIONS PROVIDED
3 +7maitre d' (avoiding both plural and direct possessive)
B D Finch
3maîtres d’hôtel's
Virginie Mair
3 -1maitres'
cynthiatesser


Discussion entries: 11





  

Answers


36 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
maîtres d’hôtel's


Explanation:
"The plural of maître d'hôtel is ."
"Forming the possessive case of compound words: for compound words, make the last word in the group possessive. ex: The secretary of state’s speech was televised."
That is if you insist on having this compact possessive structure. But really, I would highly recommend you turn your sentence around so you can have something like: "Duties of maîtres d'hôtels typically include..."



    Reference: http://teachersites.schoolworld.com/webpages/DLoput/files/ap...
    Reference: http://www.grammarphobia.com/blog/2007/01/whats-the-plural-o...
Virginie Mair
Switzerland
Local time: 19:33
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench, Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Tom in London: there should be no apostrophe unless the noun is possessive
12 mins
  -> Asker does want to know the possessive form though...

agree  Tony M: I agree that to get round the apostrophe problem, it would be best to write it in full; there is no problem with the 'hôtel' part, since in the profession, it is well know that you have a maître d'hôtel in a restaurant (in fact, LESS likely in an hotel!)
28 mins
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

4 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): -1
maitres'


Explanation:
leave the "d'" out

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 5 mins (2014-01-08 08:07:03 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Of course, the "i" has a circumflex accent

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 50 mins (2014-01-08 08:52:18 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

if you want to write"d'", then I would look for a way to avoid using the possessive "s" (using "of, belonging to, relevant to, concerning, pertaining to, etc." instead)

cynthiatesser
Italy
Local time: 19:33
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Italian
Notes to answerer
Asker: Although maitre is used on its own in Italian, it would seem that the correct GB ENG qualification is maitre d'hotel or (more commonly) maitre d'....


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Tom in London: there should be no apostrophe unless the noun is possessive
43 mins
  -> It is a possessive! See what the asker has written
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +7
maitre d' (avoiding both plural and direct possessive)


Explanation:
First of all, without any information about how this fits into a sentence, it's rather difficult to advise. However, I suggest that you might consider avoiding both the plural and a surfeit of apostrophes, e.g. "the skills of any maitre d' should include ... ".

B D Finch
France
Local time: 19:33
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 10

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M: Absolutely! As you say, we do need to see the whole sentence; but I strongly suspect that the use of the possessive would in any case sound awkward here...
5 mins
  -> Thanks Tony.

agree  Carol Gullidge: exactly! Indeed, as used by the Asker in the Discussion above: "the various skills a truly qualified maitre must have."
45 mins
  -> Thanks Carol

agree  Charles Davis: Excellent advice: just don't go down that road at all; find a detour.
1 hr
  -> Thanks Charles. Wriggling skills are essential for all good translators.

agree  Sheila Wilson: As the asker has specified GB ENG then perhaps the term is better replaced by head waiter in any case, although I would still avoid a plural possessive.
2 hrs
  -> Thanks Sheila. Yes, "head waiter" could be an option, though it's a bit less grand.

agree  Ashutosh Mitra
4 hrs
  -> Thanks Ashutosh

agree  Yvonne Gallagher: a maitre d' is not a "head waiter", as SW says above, imo
8 hrs
  -> Thanks Gallagy

agree  Tina Vonhof: and without any accents.
13 hrs
  -> Thanks Tina. Yes.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)



Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs (or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.

KudoZ™ translation help

The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.


See also:

Your current localization setting

English

Select a language

Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search