Today, I had to look up something for the second time. So I thought I’d post about it in order to cement it in the squishy matter between my ears.
Whats the difference between “per” and “pere de”? And while we’re at it, what’s “fare de” all about?
Check out my previous post for a mention of “per”.
- per = with, by means of, by
- Mi iris per buso = I went by (means of) bus.
‘e’ is the adverb ending. It’s kinda like adding “ly” in English words (quick -> quickly). So what’s “pere”? It’s hard to compare directly to English since “by means of – ly” doesn’t really work.
To describe an action with “pere” is to say that it is done as a kind of means. It’s done in a way as a means.
So it’s slightly softer than “per” which says something is directly the means of something. “Pere” says that the thing was necessary, but not the direct tool for the action (Like a translator in a discussion between two people of different mother tongues). It’s normally accompanied by “de” (“by”). So often “pere de” might be translated as “helped by” or simply “by means of”.
“Fare de” is something a bit different. The reason it’s here, is that it is often just translated as “by”. The verb “fari” means “to do/make”. “Fare” describes an action or description (as adverbs do) that is being done/made. And “de” is like “by”. So “fare de” is like “(done) by”.
- Jen la pentraĵo de mia patrino = Behold the painting by my mother.
- Meloj estas timataj de ĉiuj kameloj = Badgers are feared by all camels.
In the first sentence, the painting is the result of an action, so it can be done by someone/something. This can be shown with “de”.
In the second sentence, this “esti” verb plus a participle (timata) shows a passive construction. Instead of active, which would be “X fears badgers”. We don’t have to state who does the fearing in a passive form: “Badgers are feared”. However if we do want to state who does the action, then we can use “de” (“by”).
Where does “fare de” come in then? Because “de” has us covered here, all by itself. It seems to be unneeded, but it can be employed when there is ambiguity. Because you see, “de” has lots of other uses too.
Check out this example from the PMEG:
- Mi legis la tradukon de Hamleto fare de Zamenhof = I read the translation of Hamlet by Zamenhof
Notice how “de” can also mean “of”. If I had just said:
- Mi legis la tradukon de Hamleto de Zamenhof
Did Hamlet do the translating? Was Zamenhof the play to be translated?
“Fare de” explicitly says that an action was done by what follows. Here the action was a translation (the noun “translation” is the result of translating). So whatever comes after “fare de” did the translating.
Thought that was neat 🙂