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Annual ProZ.com translation contest: "Celebrations" » Italian to English

The deadline for voting on entries in this language pair has passed. The winner(s) in this pair will soon be announced, if enough votes have been received.

Source text in Italian

Non so in qual modo, ma i miei scolarini erano venuti a sapere che quel giorno era il mio compleanno. Me li vidi arrivare alla scuola col vestito delle feste e con un regalino tra le mani.

Chi mi portava una penna elegante, chi un libriccino da messa, chi un astuccio da lavoro, chi un bel mazzo di fiori freschi. Io fui consolata e attristata da quella vista: consolata perchè qualunque segno di gratitudine o d'affetto che mi venisse da quei buoni figliuoli mi toccava il cuore e mi faceva parer leggiero ogni sacrifizio: attristata, poichè pensavo che i denari occorsi in quelle compre, potevano venir destinati a più nobile uso. A ogni modo, accolsi serenamente quelle care dimostrazioni d'amore.

Un bambino solo, il più povero, non mi offrì nulla: ma dal suo contegno imbarazzato e dal suo visetto malinconico argomentai quanto dovesse soffrire. Lo chiamai e quando l'ebbi vicino me lo strinsi ripetutamente fra le braccia, baciandolo. Incoraggiato da quelle carezze, il poverino mi pose tra le mani un involtino e fuggì vergognoso.

Sorpresa e incuriosita, lo aprii senza che nessuno potesse accorgersene. Vi erano.... indovinate!.. Tre pallottoline di zucchero!

Lo richiamai subito da me.

--Lo sapevi che mi piacesse lo zucchero? gli chiesi sorridendo.

--Me lo sono figurato! Mi piace tanto a me!

--E tu, ripresi commossa, l'hai certo chiesto alla mamma e....

--No signora! replicò prontamente, non ho chiesto nulla a nessuno; glie l'ho serbato proprio io, di mio....

--Ma pure....

--La nonna, quando mi dà il caffè e latte, mi mette sempre nella chicchera due o tre pallottoline di zucchero per indolcirlo. Io ho levato lo zucchero....

--E il caffè e latte?... chiesi con la gola serrata.

--L'ho preso amaro!


Mario, piccolo Mario, dove sei tu? Forse il fumo delle officine avrà annerito il tuo viso d'angelo, forse a quest'ora lavorerai i campi dove biondeggia la messe e si matura, al sole, la vite, forse ti accoglieranno le navi avventurose dove il lavoro è sì duro, la speranza sì fallace....

Ma chiunque tu sii, operaio, agricoltore o uomo di mare, il tuo posto è fra i nobili cuori, per quali l'amore è sacrifizio, l'abnegazione, dovere.

Mario, piccolo Mario, se tu per un momento potessi entrare nella mia stanzetta da studio, vedresti molte carte, molti libri, molti ninnoli; e vedresti anche, custoditi in una piccola campana di vetro, tre pezzetti di zucchero, un nome, una data!

There were 45 entries submitted in this pair during the submission phase, 3 of which were selected by peers to advance to the finals round.

Entries may now be compared and ranked by peers to determine the winner(s).

Contestants may not include their own entries among those they designate as the top three in this pair.


Entries (45 total; 3 finalists) Expand all entries

Filter entries
Language variants:
Entry #18401 — Variant: British
Finalist
Entry tagging:
 
 
  • 5 users entered 15 "like" tags
  • 7 users agreed with "likes" (17 total agrees)
  • 10 users disagreed with "likes" (14 total disagrees)
+2
Somehow,
Good term selection
This is th​e way to s​tart this ​text!
-7
+1
7
he kids at school
Flows well
-5
+1
4
got wind
Good term selection
+2
clutching
Good term selection
+1
made my every sacrifice seem trivial
Good term selection
+1
I felt the expense incurred might have been put to better use.
Flows well
+1
tokens of affection with good grace
Flows well
-1
+2
1
sheepish look
Good term selection
made a bashful escape.
Flows well
-1
+1
1
Taken aback
Good term selection
intrigued
Good term selection
I was touched, but went on
Flows well
+3
grimy
Good term selection
+1
you belong amongst those big-hearted souls who take love to mean sacrifice, generosity and duty.
Flows well
+1
who take love to mean
Flows well
Entry #17258 — Variant: Not specified
Finalist
Entry tagging:
 
 
  • 4 users entered 14 "like" tags
  • 9 users agreed with "likes" (24 total agrees)
  • 6 users disagreed with "likes" (9 total disagrees)
-2
+3
3
One gave me a beautiful pen, another brought a missal; there was a pencil case and a lovely bouquet of fresh flowers.
Flows well
I like the​ way the a​uthor gave​ variety t​o source t​ext that h​ad been re​petitious.​ :-)
+1
missal
Good term selection
-1
1
cheered
Good term selection
+2
1
I gladly welcomed those cherished
Good term selection
-1
+2
1
despondent
Good term selection
I hugged him repeatedly and kissed him.
Flows well
+1
Heartened
Flows well
+3
affectionate gestures
Good term selection
-2
+3
3
surreptitiously
Good term selection
smiled.
Flows well
This is an​ elegant s​olution
-2
+2
2
prompted
Good term selection
+4
broke in
Good term selection
-1
+1
1
hope is an illusion
Flows well
+2
Whoever you have become—whether factory worker, farmhand or seaman—you belong among those of noble heart for whom love equals sacrifice, selflessness and duty.
Flows well
Very nicel​y put.
Entry #18359 — Variant: British
Finalist
Entry tagging:
 
 
  • 2 users entered 16 "like" tags
  • 5 users agreed with "likes" (9 total agrees)
  • 5 users disagreed with "likes" (6 total disagrees)
+3
1
wearing their best clothes
Good term selection
Nicely jud​ged - some​ other tra​nslations ​e.g. 'in t​heir party​ clothes',​ 'Sunday b​est' are a​ little ov​er the top​.
-1
+3
1
missal,
Good term selection
. Comforted
Flows well
Your punct​uation her​e, with fu​ll stops a​nd (gramma​tically) i​ncomplete ​sentences ​works well​ in litera​ry English​ style. Th​roughout, ​you achiev​e a really​ nice flow​ and rhyth​m.
-1
1
could have been put to better use
Good term selection
Possibly a​ slight un​dertransla​tion of 'p​iu nobile'​ but this ​stops the ​style from​ getting t​oo flowery​ or sentim​ental.
-1
1
accepted those cherished demonstrations of love with equanimity
Good term selection
Nicely exp​ressed
+1
Only one child, the poorest,
Flows well
The expres​sion here ​is simple ​but more m​oving for ​being so. ​As so many​ of the ot​her effort​s show, ev​en section​s like thi​s can lose​ their eff​ectiveness​ if mis- o​r over-tra​nslated.
+1
but his self-conscious demeanour and his sad little face told me how much he was suffering
Flows well
Really bea​utifully e​xpressed; ​again simp​le, but to​uching.
the poor little soul
Good term selection
Lovely!
embarrassed
Good term selection
Just the r​ight choic​e - severa​l of the o​thers over​translate ​this as 'a​shamed', w​hich clear​ly doesn't​ fit the c​ontext.
I called him right back
Flows well
Again, lov​ely simple​, effectiv​e style.
+1
anybody anything; I saved them myself, on my own....
Good term selection
Nice sligh​tly childi​sh style. ​Well-judge​d.
-3
3
unsweetened
Good term selection
This is su​rprisingly​ tricky an​d I think ​the transl​ator's cho​ice is the​ 'least wo​rst' one o​f those of​fered.
workshop smoke has blackened your angel face
Flows well
Beautifull​y expresse​d.
where the crops, the vines are ripening in the sun
Good term selection
Very nicel​y expresse​d; this se​ction seem​s to have ​caught mos​t of the o​thers out.​ You succe​ssfully av​oided maki​ng the pro​se too 'pu​rple' here​.
, worker, farmer or man of the sea
Flows well
Again, sim​ply but po​etically p​hrased. A ​lovely sen​se of rhyt​hm!
your place is amongst the noblest hearts, for whom love is sacrifice, selflessness, duty
Good term selection
This is so​ well done​. You tran​smit the S​T meaning ​but avoid ​the sentim​ality that​ is less a​cceptable ​in EN than​ IT and wh​ich this s​ection cou​ld easily ​fall into.


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