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Tricky words in today´s OVI
           



Pridané: 06.02.2006
Autor: Andy BILLINGHAM
Kategória: 05/2006

Looking through my notes, I can't believe it was as far back as February 2002 when I dealt with "take" and "last", the two typical English translations of the Slovak "trvať". The guideline for deciding which English word is better is that "last" suggests you want the activity, process or state to go on as long as possible, whereas "take" indicates you would like whatever it is to finish as soon as possible. So "last" is a synonym for "continue", but "take" is associated with things that take up or even waste your time.

I don't mean it's wrong to use last instead of take, but it depends on what you want to imply. "How long is this meeting going to take?" implies that you want it to be short, but "This chewing-gum flavor lasts and lasts" expresses satisfaction with the long-lasting taste. Sometimes you have to say "take": "The journey home took US six hours in the snow," or "YOU always take ages to make up your mind." "Take" means that a process comes to an end, whereas "last" gives no indication of the end, only the length of the process.

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