Posted in Portuguese

Por Falta Dum Prego

Tentei traduzir um poema inglês, usando o pretérito imperfeito do conjuntivo… Espero que o efeito não seja demasiado horrível….

Se não houvesse um prego, a ferradura perder-se-ia.

Se a ferradura se perdesse, o cavalo cairia.

Se o cavalo caísse o cavaleiro seria morto.

Se a cavaleiro fosse morto, o exército se renderia

Se o exército se rendesse, o Reino seria arruinado.

Por falta dum prego, o Reino seria arruinado.


This is a translation of a poem in English that has quite a few variations but goes something like this:

For want of a nail the shoe was lost,
for want of a shoe the horse was lost,
for want of a horse the knight was lost,
for want of a knight the battle was lost,
for want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
So a kingdom was lost—all for want of a nail.

I only picked it because it seemed like a good excuse to use a lot of subjunctives.

When I originally wrote it I made the silly mistake of simply looking up the word “nail” in the dictionary and simply using the first word (“Unha”) that came up. Thus it was that I published a notebook entry in iTalki that seemed to suggest that the kingdom could be lost because of the lack of a fingernail!


Just a data nerd

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