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Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer

English translation: Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
English translation:Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever
Entered by: laurawheeler
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18:09 Dec 8, 2003
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary
French term or phrase: Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
... de leurs dépouilles.

The writer is linking the roar of the ocean with the idea of the dead being washed before their burial.
laurawheeler
France
Local time: 18:04
Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever
Explanation:
Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever
Selected response from:

xxxIanW
Local time: 18:04
Grading comment
Jane's right. Thanks!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +9It is customary for the living to wash the dead before their (final) departure.
William Stein
4 +3There is a custom requiring the living to wash the dead before taking leave of their mortal remains.
Richard Benham
4 +3Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company foreverxxxIanW
4It is the custom of the living to wash the deads before disposing of the bodies
lien
3 +1the custom states/requires that those remaining in this world cleanse the lifeless bodiesRHELLER
4A custom requires that the living wash the dead before parting with their remains
Jean-Luc Dumont


  

Answers


0 min   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +9
Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
It is customary for the living to wash the dead before their (final) departure.


Explanation:
"Final departure" sounds clearer

William Stein
Costa Rica
Local time: 11:04
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 1737

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Karen Tucker
2 mins

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
2 mins

agree  Alina Matei
5 mins

agree  xxxIanW: Hey there Bill - yours is better, I must admit
9 mins
  -> Thanks Ian. How's life in Cologne?

agree  Richard Benham: Yeah, but what about the "dépouilles"?
23 mins
  -> Justement, on lave des pouilles.

agree  Azure
1 hr

neutral  Emérentienne: tu sais ce que ça veut dire pouilles en ancien français ?
1 hr

agree  lien: nothing missing here
2 hrs

neutral  Jean-Luc Dumont: not sure departure here is faithful to the meaning - the living part from the dead bodies - the dead are already departed
3 hrs
  -> Well, it's the final separation is considered a type of voyage.

agree  Narasimhan Raghavan
6 hrs

agree  Enel Diamond
7 hrs
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3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever


Explanation:
Custom has it that the living wash the dead before parting company forever


xxxIanW
Local time: 18:04
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 234
Grading comment
Jane's right. Thanks!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Jane Lamb-Ruiz: right and elegant no it is no there is! Great
1 hr

agree  writeaway: agree with Jane-yours is just fine in lovely clear language
4 hrs

agree  sktrans
8 hrs
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23 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +3
There is a custom requiring the living to wash the dead before taking leave of their mortal remains.


Explanation:
I have tried to take "se séparer de leurs dépouilles" seriously. Actually "being parted from..." would capture this better, but has an unfortunate ambiguity (their **own** mortal remains, perhaps?).

Of course, "There is a custom requiring" has its pluses and minuses; if you don't like it, William's "It is customary for..." is OK. It depends whether you want to be more of a sourcier or a cibliste, I suppose.

Richard Benham
France
Local time: 18:04
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 614

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Emérentienne: mortal remains sounds a little Shakespearian mais j'achète. Leave William to his pouilles.
55 mins
  -> It's more liturgical than Shakespearean, but thanks!

agree  Jean-Luc Dumont
2 hrs

agree  sktrans
8 hrs
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35 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
the custom states/requires that those remaining in this world cleanse the lifeless bodies


Explanation:
before sending them off to the world of the departed

be buried /before a final goodbye

survivors (instead of the living)

RHELLER
United States
Local time: 10:04
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 1582

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Richard Benham: You've gone a bit over the top, haven't you? What's wrong with "living", "wash", "dead"? Why so **long** and **wordy**?
58 mins
  -> the artist in me was inspired - this is a literary translation, after all

agree  Jane Lamb-Ruiz: Richard, can't you change your TONE
59 mins
  -> thanks Jane - for defending me!
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3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
A custom requires that the living wash the dead before parting with their remains


Explanation:
...

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 3 hrs 18 mins (2003-12-08 21:28:28 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

dépouilles = corpses

Jean-Luc Dumont
France
Local time: 18:04
Native speaker of: French
PRO pts in pair: 1108
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8 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Une coutume veut que les vivants lavent les morts avant de se séparer
It is the custom of the living to wash the deads before disposing of the bodies


Explanation:
****

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 9 hrs 2 mins (2003-12-09 03:12:13 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

the dead before disposig of the body/corpse

lien
Netherlands
Local time: 18:04
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 80
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