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Guys, I have a question about Greybeards, the word

FabresFour
FabresFour
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So, it's a question that might sound strange to English speakers, but I think it will make sense:

When you read the word "greybeards", do you think of the combination of "Grey" + "Beards" or do you think of something like "wise", "sage"?

I was looking at the translation for several ESO languages, and they usually follow the pattern of translating "Grey" and "Beard" to their equivalents. "Beard" and "Grey" (like Grisebarbes in french). However, some speakers of my language believe it should be adapted to the equivalent of "Wise", "Elder" and "Sage". I would like to know your opinion! :)
Edited by ZOS_Icy on November 28, 2023 2:00PM
@FabresFour - 1970 CP
Director and creator of the unofficial translation of The Elder Scrolls Online into BR-Portuguese.
  • Toanis
    Toanis
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    It could also mean "senile old geezers on the mountain", and that's how the general populace in Skyrim sees them, if they even know they exist. Of those who know what the Greybeards actually do, there are a few students of the Thu'um who may consider them wise elder sages, and the Blades who consider them traitors to humanity, for fraternizing with dragons.
  • LunaFlora
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    if i read "Greybeard" i think of the Greybeards of High Hrothgar.

    they have grey beards so i guess also think about that.
    miaow! i'm Luna ( she/her ).

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  • Elsonso
    Elsonso
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    I see it as a name or title. If it is translated at all, it should be the color and facial hair.
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  • ZOS_Icy
    ZOS_Icy
    mod
    Greetings,

    After further review we have decided to move this thread to a category we think is more appropriate for this topic.

    Thank you for your understanding.
    Staff Post
  • FabresFour
    FabresFour
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    I hadn't posted it on lore because I thought that since the subject was translation, it was valid for general purposes xD but that's ok!

    So, I had this doubt precisely because, in my head, if it were to be something like "Elder" or "Sage", they would use "Elder" or "Sage", and not that word.

    Thank you very much everyone! :)
    @FabresFour - 1970 CP
    Director and creator of the unofficial translation of The Elder Scrolls Online into BR-Portuguese.
  • LunaFlora
    LunaFlora
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    they're monks that have grey beards.
    it's not very complicated
    miaow! i'm Luna ( she/her ).

    🌸*throws cherry blossom on you*🌸
    "Eagles advance, traveler! And may the Green watch and keep you."
    🦬🦌🐰
    PlayStation and PC EU.
    LunaLolaBlossom on psn.
    LunaFloraBlossom on pc.
  • FabresFour
    FabresFour
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    LunaFlora wrote: »
    they're monks that have grey beards.
    it's not very complicated

    So, that's what I thought. lol

    But I was curious about the view that native English speakers would have of this word, whether it would corroborate my perception.
    @FabresFour - 1970 CP
    Director and creator of the unofficial translation of The Elder Scrolls Online into BR-Portuguese.
  • Tenthirty2
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    Cool thread :)

    TBH I think of them in both ways? I'll try to clarify because the more I think on this topic it's a bit more complex than it seems.

    I think "Greybeards" as a name for them, their order, all that they are and do.
    So if there was another "really old dude with a big beard who knows stuff" I wouldn't also call them a "Greybeard".

    As a slang I suppose you could call another old beard-wearing dude a grey-beard, but that would be akin to saying "old fart", "old man", etc.

    As a basic definition for them the first thing that comes to mind is "monks". Sage I suppose also fits, but IMO monk is bang on for how they live and the path they follow.
    But that's still very high-level. Monk or sage could be applied to many people of different beliefs, practices, etc.

    The name "Greybeards" for me is specific to them. Keepers and Teachers of the Thu'um.
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  • Danikat
    Danikat
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    In English Greybeard doesn't automatically imply 'wise'. Without any additional context it would be taken literally - someone who has a grey beard. That does mean they're likely to be old (and male) but it doesn't suggest knowledge or respect or anything.

    The capitalisation means it's an actual title and not just a description, but that still doesn't tell you anything beyond the fact that it's not just the person who first tells you about them calling them old.
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  • RaddlemanNumber7
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    TESV "Greybeard" is just a name.

    IRL in my experience a "grey beard" is a grumpy old man with knee-jerk contrarianism, attitudes that are 50 years out of date, and/or chronic nostalgia. The term is pejorative.
    PC EU
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