2

In a translation I came across the following saying:

J'en suis encor tout hors de moi

The character here is rather upset in this scene, so I have translated it as:

I am still beside myself

Is this equivalent to the English expression 'to be beside oneself' as in to be very upset/angry?

4

I think the translation is good, but it does not translate the en. Maybe:

I am still beside myself because of it/that,

or maybe:

That still has me quite beside myself.

that en should be somehow reflected in the translation.

Être hors de soi means, according to CNRTL: Être très en colère, and the following example is given:

Nous l'avons vu arriver rouge, hors de lui et dans un état d'agitation extrême (Ponson du Terr., Rocambole, t. 1, 1859, p. 131).

So, this expression pertains only to anger, and could not be used, to convey, e.g. that the person is overcome with joy, but it seems that beside oneself has the same meaning in English.

  • 1
    Good point. The former is good, the latter not. I think you'll find few references to such a construction. :p Another missing element is "tout", though as an intensifier it may be droppable. But one could consider: "completely beside myself" or "quite" (for an 18th-century text in particular). – Luke Sawczak Mar 2 '17 at 22:25
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    +1, especially, as mentioned by @LukeSawczak, since you added the former, which I don't find clunky at all, except that in cases where one is still beside oneself (and not just capable of getting that way again) you could consider "It/that still has me quite beside myself [with X emotion]." Also, I think this question could be more than just one of translation if the OP had asked if "hors de soi/toi" in French can be used (as can "beside one/myself" in English) for any emotion, including positive ones like "joy", or is it only used in negative contexts in French. – Papa Poule Mar 2 '17 at 22:44
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    With the edit to "has" instead of "gets", I now support the second one as well. – Luke Sawczak Mar 2 '17 at 23:02
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    @LukeSawczak I got my "former" confused with my "latter" and erroneously thought that, like me, you had supported "the second one" from the beginning! Sorry for my confusion (and my confusing comment) but all's well that ends well, I suppose! – Papa Poule Mar 2 '17 at 23:20
4

I would just translate it by:

I'm still (very) upset about it.

This is not keeping the literary and old style tone though.

About the 'to be beside oneself' part, I'm not familiar with this expression but according to the English dictionaries I found, it seems its meaning is wider than hors de moi, i.e. not restricted to negative emotions.

Note that encor is lacking a final e for poetic license, and tout might be here more to make a proper octosyllabic verse than to intensify hors de moi.

  • ah, did not think of that...but isn't the alexandrine strictly a 12-syllable line? – emp1211 Mar 2 '17 at 23:14
  • Ouch, you are right, that's an octosyllable. – jlliagre Mar 2 '17 at 23:22

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