KudoZ home » English to French » Art/Literary

harmonica

Advertisement

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.
20:05 May 3, 2001
English to French translations [Non-PRO]
Art/Literary
English term or phrase: harmonica
musical instrument
taylor
Advertisement


Summary of answers provided
naharmonicaLouise Atfield
naHarmonicaChristian Wellhoff
naaccordéon
Madeleine van Zanten
na"Harmonica"NancyC


  

Answers


1 hr
"Harmonica"


Explanation:
The word remains the same in French.


    Dictionnaire Hachette Oxford
NancyC
United States
Local time: 20:33
Native speaker of: Native in Haitian-CreoleHaitian-Creole

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
Letspeak

Madeleine van Zanten
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

7 hrs
accordéon


Explanation:
hth

Madeleine van Zanten
Switzerland
Local time: 02:33
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 200

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
Letspeak

Louise Atfield
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

11 hrs
Harmonica


Explanation:
That answer was my automatic answer, having heard the term used in English for a small musical instrument I used to play, as a child. However bilingual sources hinted to the term being also used for a glass organ or mouth organ. So I went to the English source and got:
"Harmonica: Small musical instrument. You play it by moving it accross your lips and by blowing and sucking air through it". I then went to the French source and got: "Harmonica: Petit instrument de musique rectangulaire dont le son est produit par des anches libres métalliques que l'on met en vibration en soufflant et en aspirant".
This confirms the term remains the same in both languages and that other possible translations are likely to refer to obsolete use of the term.

Hope this reassure you on the use of the same term in both language, which is something often causing problems.


    English:Collins Cobuild English Language Dictionary (hard copy)
Christian Wellhoff
PRO pts in pair: 7

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
Letspeak
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 day 21 hrs
harmonica


Explanation:
This is the proper French word, as any French or English-French dictionary can confirm.

However, in French Canada, we also use the term "musique à bouche", which is not a very proper term, but everybody uses it and understands it.
We also use another term which is much more pretty and colourful. It is "un ruine-babines". "Babines" is a colloquial word meaning lips, as in the expression "le lécher les babines" (to lick one's chops). "Ruine-babines" of course, means something that "ruins one's chops or one's lips", which is what this instrument does to someone who plays too much of it.

Nevertheless, if you want to be proper and if you want any French speaker to understand you, you had better use the word "harmonica", which is more sedate, but to the point. :-)

Louise Atfield
PRO pts in pair: 577

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
Letspeak
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


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:



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