acabara imponiéndose

3
votes

"Tenía miedo de que su fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose."

"He was afraid that his reputation for secrecy..."??? Can someone help me finish this translation? It is from a book I am reading. I think "acabara" is "to have just" done something. "Imponiédose" is "imposing it". The two together, however, don't make sense to me in this sentence. Even the use of the gerund form here is confusing to me.

Ayudame, por favor.

4556 views
updated MAR 27, 2012
edited by DR1960
posted by DR1960

16 Answers

4
votes

would prevail.

Exactlywink

Melanor, you did not get the tense right.

Maestro responds -Magnifico. Tenía miedo de que su fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose.

I am not too sure though about the "its" Roberto suggests.

I think it refers to the four people, so it is their secrecy, their keeping the secrets to themselves would prevail. In that book all the guys were sworn or something to secrecy and he thought that none of the mentioned would talk.

updated MAR 27, 2012
posted by 00494d19
3
votes

I am not too sure though about the "its" Roberto suggests.I think it refers to the four people,

That's what I wrote at first but in the sentence itself there's no metion of the four guys.

Maestro responds -Magnifico. Tenía miedo de que su fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose.

My thought here is that "su" is singular suggesting that the reputation for secrecy belongs to the secret itself.

In either case the English translation would not change much I would still choose to write:

He was affraid that (its, his or their) reputation for secrecy would prevail.

updated MAR 26, 2012
edited by 0068e2f4
posted by 0068e2f4
Getting my vote, and yes, the "su" is unclear
2
votes

Hey DR1960! This was a very intriguing question! Here's a few lines I found searching other reference works:

¿Acabaría imponiéndose el egoísmo?

Will selfishness always triumph in the end?

Durante un tiempo la planta pugna por los nutrientes, la luz y el espacio, pero los espinos acaban imponiéndose y la ahogan.

For a while both crops vie for nutrition, light, and space, but eventually the thorns overshadow the plant and choke it off.

Con el tiempo, las teselas (piedras talladas en forma de cubos) acaban imponiéndose a los guijarros, pues ofrecen una mayor gama de tonalidades, una colocación más fácil y una mejor adaptación al dibujo.

Stone cubes, or tesserae, gradually superseded pebbles. Tesserae offered a greater range of tints and were more easily laid and adapted to the required design.

This shows me that 'acabar + imponiéndose' is a viable combination. Unfortunately this doesn't help me understand the meaning of the line from your book. Being out of context makes it hard for me to discern if it is a positive or negative action.

But my best guess at this point would be:

He was afraid that his reputation for secrecy might be over/tarnished/done with.

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by chaparrito
1
vote

"he was affraid that his reputation for secrecy would end up getting in the way of...or forcing itself upon...

Maybe we need more text DR

updated NOV 7, 2009
edited by 0068e2f4
posted by 0068e2f4
0
votes

Two out of three site translators came up with "excessive secrecy" for "secretismo." I should know better than to put my trust in them.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by Malenor
0
votes

I'm taking out the word "extreme" and giving it as "He was afraid that his reputation for secrecy eventually won out." I agree that "su" is ambiguous here (whose reputation is it?), but I can't imagine who else would have a reputation for secrecy (keeping secrets). After all, four different people came to him with their information because they had confidence in his ability to keep their secrets safe.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by Malenor
0
votes

Hey, that makes so much sense now!

The character was afraid that the secret nature of the information would prevail, or remain secret, or never get out into the open.

Cool! Great teamwork everyone! (Although I think if Heidita had piped in earlier it would have let us all sleep a little more! wink)

Just as a side note so we're all on the same page,

Malenor said: "Secretismo" uses the "-ismo" suffix indicating that it is an extreme or excessive secrecy.

Thanks for the input, Malenor! Every bit helps! smile It kind of looks like that, but maybe you're thinking of the 'ísimo' suffix? The suffix 'ismo' is a typical suffix, and is different from 'ísimo.' Think of muchísimo, as compared to cristianismo and ateísmo. So secretismo can mean "excessive secrecy", but it does not always have that flavor, and it is not because of it's suffix.

Ciao!

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by chaparrito
Oh, well! I learn from my mistakes and I can't blame the translator for it even though the translator did mistakingly say it was an extreme secrecy.
0
votes

Good job, chaparra on the secretismo:

secretismo. 1. m. Modo de actuar en secreto con respecto a asuntos que debieran manifestarse.

It does not mean excessive here.

updated NOV 8, 2009
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

A little more context: This is from El Código Da Vinci. Early in the book, Silas is telling the Maestro that he has gotten the secret information from each of four people. They all told him the same information independently. Maestro responds -Magnifico. Tenía miedo de que su (its) fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose.

"he was affraid that its reputation for secrecy would end up getting in the way of...or forcing itself upon...

He was affraid that its reputation for secrecy (the secret's reputation) would end up getting in the way (of the information being revealed).

He was affraid that its reputation for secrecy would prevail.

...de que su fama de secretismo terminara por imponerse...

acabara por o terminara por--- acabara imponiéndose o terminara imponiéndose for me they all work

...de que su fama de secretismo terminara imponiéndose (prevaleciera, venciera sobre la decisión de revelar la verdad o el secreto)

Prevalecer, vencer, ser superior, poder o valer más; sobresalir, predominar.

Tenía miedo de que su fama (its reputation) ( la fama de ser reservado, secretive) de secretismo prevaleciera. (prevaleciendo, ganando, siendo el factor decisivo en el resultado final)

Tenía miedo de que su (its) fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose.

Estas palabras son todas sinónimas. prevalecer, predominar, imponer, permanecer, influir, vencer

updated NOV 8, 2009
edited by 0068e2f4
posted by 0068e2f4
0
votes

"Imponerse" does not mean "to establish" in any of my dictionaries, it can mean "prevail," or even "to triumph," so in the end I will give a more accurate (less rough) translation as "He was afraid that his reputation for extreme secrecy eventually won out." This is very difficult to translate even given the context of it.

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by Malenor
0
votes

"Acabara" is the imperfect subjunctive 1st or 3rd person singular of the verb "Acabar" meaning "to finish." The subjunctive mood is used in this case where the sentence expresses an emotion (fear). "Imponiéndose" can mean that the secrecy either just finished imposing or asserting itself. "Secretismo" uses the "-ismo" suffix indicating that it is an extreme or excessive secrecy. So I would give a rough rendering of the sentence "Tenía miedo de que su fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose" as "He was afraid that his reputation for extreme secrecy just finished asserting itself."

The reason your translation should not use the word "have" is because the "acabara" is not followed by "de." "Acabar de" means "to have just finished" something. "Acabar" plus a gerund, as in this case, simply means "finished" as in "just finished imposing itself."

updated NOV 7, 2009
edited by Malenor
posted by Malenor
0
votes

"Acabar de" means to have just finished doing whatever. Since this is about feelings in the past, it is in the past subjunctive. The pronomial form of imponer means to impose on oneself, which in English translates to establish.

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by lorenzo9
0
votes

Unfortunately this doesn't help me understand the meaning of the line from your book. Being out of context makes it hard for me to discern if it is a positive or negative action.

Robertico and Chaparrito:

A little more context: This is from El Código Da Vinci. Early in the book, Silas is telling the Maestro that he has gotten the secret information from each of four people. They all told him the same information independently. Maestro responds -Magnifico. Tenía miedo de que su fama de secretismo acabara imponiéndose.

I don't know if this helps to clarify. From what you have already responded, I have a better sense of what is being said. I'd just like to understand more clearly what "acabara imponiéndose" means both literally and in the context of the action.

Thank you both for your previous responses.

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by DR1960
y Lorenzo también!
0
votes

He was afraid that his reputation for secrecy had become established.

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by lorenzo9
0
votes

...de que su fama de secretismo terminara por imponerse...

Robertico: What I typed was a direct quote from a book. I'm trying to make sense of it as it was written. Can you help with this?

updated NOV 7, 2009
posted by DR1960