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gieße "Wasser auf die Mühlen

English translation: picturesque speech for "strengthen the position of ..."

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:Wasser auf die Mühlen der/des ... gießen
English translation:picturesque speech for "strengthen the position of ..."
Entered by: Roland Grefer
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

04:41 Aug 25, 2001
German to English translations [Non-PRO]
German term or phrase: gieße "Wasser auf die Mühlen
Blankes Unverständnis für Demonstrationen gieße "Wasser auf die Mühlen eines sozialkritischen Fundamentalismus, ...
mckinnc
Local time: 06:31
picturesque speech for "strengthens the position of"
Explanation:
Blatant incomprehension of demonstrations (displayed by a certain subset of the population) strengthens the position of socio-critical fundamentalism/fundamentalists, ...
Selected response from:

Roland Grefer
Local time: 00:31
Grading comment
Thanks to everyone for answering and helping me getting to the bottom of the meaning. I found this most useful of all Roland. I think that explosive, fire imagery is a bit strong here (although the demonstrations were violent). I don't think we have a similar water and mill-based expression in English so I eventually went for "set the wheels of a ... in motion".

Thanks,

Colin
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
na +2add fuel to the fireStefan Tobler
na +1is grist to the mill of ...
dieter haake
nadefinition below
Mary Worby
napicturesque speech for "strengthens the position of"
Roland Grefer
na -4...is water under the bridge...Klaus Dorn


  

Answers


14 mins peer agreement (net): +1
is grist to the mill of ...


Explanation:
der Sinn ist:
... stärkt (die Position), oder
....macht (den soz. Fund.) stärker

hope it helps
didi

dieter haake
Austria
Local time: 06:31
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Thomas Bollmann
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1 hr peer agreement (net): +2
add fuel to the fire


Explanation:
the same general meaning, but perhaps nearer to the mood of the demonstrators than the hard grind of the mill?

hope it helps.

Stefan Tobler
Local time: 05:31
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 32

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  DR. RICHARD BAVRY: I think that is pretty faithful to the intent
3 hrs

agree  Caro Maucher
3 hrs
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1 hr peer agreement (net): -4
...is water under the bridge...


Explanation:
The equivalent to the German "Wasser auf die Muehlen" is the English "water under the bridge" (funny thing of course is that they both have to do with water). But seriously, that's the term you're looking for. Translated the whole sentence means:

Total incomprehension of demonstrations is water under the bridge for a sociocritical fundamentalism.

Klaus Dorn
Local time: 08:31
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in GermanGerman
PRO pts in pair: 1514

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
disagree  Mary Worby: The sense of 'water under the bridge' is that it's all in the past, it doesn't matter anymore (-:
18 mins
  -> Right-of-way fight is water under the bridge now - http://smythnews.com/980826/I-Articles/mo-1.htm

disagree  Ulrike Lieder: Wasser auf die Mühlen - add fuel to the fire. Water under the bridge - den Bach runter (it's over, done with)
3 hrs

disagree  DR. RICHARD BAVRY: afraid that misses the mark
3 hrs

disagree  Roland Grefer: your translation implies "does not matter anymore", while the original means "strengthens the position of".
6 hrs
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1 hr
definition below


Explanation:
According to the Duden Redewendungen:

jmndn unterstützen, beflügeln.

So the general meaning would be that the lack of understanding of the demonstrations furthers the cause of anti-society fundamentalism.

I'm not sure that there is an expression in English that means the same thing.

My general plan with idioms of this kind is to find the most natural translation, rather than wedging somthing in that doesn't really work. But it does give you the freedom to add in a couple of idioms at another point in the text - where they may work better!

FWIW

Mary


    Duden Redewendungen
Mary Worby
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:31
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 2770

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Trudy Peters

disagree  DR. RICHARD BAVRY: sorry, Mary, but I think the idiom "adds fuel to the fire" captures the idea superbly!
3 hrs
  -> You're not wrong! Not sure how you'd work it into the sentence though!
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8 hrs
picturesque speech for "strengthens the position of"


Explanation:
Blatant incomprehension of demonstrations (displayed by a certain subset of the population) strengthens the position of socio-critical fundamentalism/fundamentalists, ...

Roland Grefer
Local time: 00:31
Native speaker of: Native in GermanGerman, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 231
Grading comment
Thanks to everyone for answering and helping me getting to the bottom of the meaning. I found this most useful of all Roland. I think that explosive, fire imagery is a bit strong here (although the demonstrations were violent). I don't think we have a similar water and mill-based expression in English so I eventually went for "set the wheels of a ... in motion".

Thanks,

Colin
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