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Близок (Близко) локоть, да не укусишь



It is (was) so near and yet out of reach ~ You cannot touch your eye with your elbow. The grapes are sour (or Sour grapes). There's many a slip 'twixt cup and lip ^How near, and yet, so far! If what you want is out of reach, there's nobody to impeach # Your elbow is near, but you cannot bite it, dear. Ср. По усам текло, а в рот не попало. Ср. Не говори гоп, пока не перепрыгнешь. Ср. Бабушка надвое сказала. Ср. Видит око, да зуб неймёт. Ср. Хороша Маша, да не наша.

Вспоминается ему, как он спокойно и тихо жил с сестрицами, как никто тогда не шумел, не гамел, и всякий делал своё дело не торопясь… И нужно же было (жениться) … "Близок локоть, да не укусишь", - мелькает в уме его пословица. (М. Салтыков-Щедрин. Пошехонская старина)

He recalled how quiet and tranquil life was with his sisters, how no one made any noise or raised a rumpus, and everyone did what they wanted without hurrying. And then, I had to go and get married . "How near, and yet, so far", the saying kept running through his mind.

Объездчик очнулся от мыслей и встряхнул головой.
- Да, - сказал он, - близок локоть, да не укусишь… Есть счастье, да нет ума искать его. (А. Чехов. Счастье)

The overseer roused himself from his thoughts and tossed his head. "Yes," he said, "your elbow is near but you can't bite it, dear. There is fortune, but there is not the wit to find it."

И вот сейчас (близок локоть, да не укусишь!) мы не могли перехватить по дороге ушедших от нас мусорских связных, хотя в районах, по которым они идут, действуют наши рейдовые отряды. (А. Бринский. По ту сторону фронта)

And now - there's many a slip 'twixt cup and lip - we failed to intercept the Musorsk messengers who left us on the road, although in the regions they are going through, we have our own raiding parties.






The Conventional Designations and Signs:

1. Brackets in combination with different letter types in the Russian title units. For instance, Бабушка (Бабка, Старуха) (ещё) надвое сказала (гадала), where the words Бабушка надвое сказала are the saying in its basic form. The words (Бабка, Старуха) given in brackets, are the variants of the basic component Бабушка; the word (гадала) is the variant of the basic component сказала; the word (ещё) is an optional component of the saying.
2. Description (in English) of a proverb's/saying's meaning is given in italics, e.g.: Бабушка (Бабка, Старуха) (ещё) надвое сказала (гадала) Nobody knows whether it is so or not, whether it will happen or not.
3. = is put before an English monoequivalent e.g.: Аппетит приходит во время еды = Appetite (or The appetite) comes with (or in, while) eating.
4. ~ is put before an English analogue, e.g.: Близок (Близко) локоть, да не укусишь ~ There's many a slip 'twixt cup and lip; or before an English antonym, e.g.: Скоро сказка сказывается, да не скоро дело делается (Contrast: ~ No sooner said than done).
5. ^ is put before a descriptive translation, in which components of an English proverb/saying or an English set-phrase is used, e.g.: Воду (в ступе) толочь - вода (и) будет ^ Beating the air is just beating the air. (The translation is made by way of using the English set-phrase "to beat the air".)
6. :: is put before such a descriptive translation as does not convey the image of the Russian proverb/saying, e.g.: Чем дальше в лес, тем больше дров:: Complications begin to set in.
7. # is put before such a descriptive translation as conveys, partially or in full, the image of the Russian proverb/saying, e.g.: Чем дальше в лес, тем больше дров # The farther into the forest, the thicker the trees. The deeper into the wood you go, the more timber seems to grow.
8. * (the asterisk) is put before those illustrations of the Russian proverb/saying's use where it has undergone an occasional change and/or participates in a stylistic device, e.g.: * Во-первых, как вам известно, вопреки пословице, брань на вороту виснет… (Ю. Герман. Я отвечаю за всё)
Firstly, because mud has a way of sticking, as you probably know…
9. Ср. is a sign of reference informing the reader that the site also contain number of similar Russian proverb/sayings, e.g.: Бабушка надвое сказала Ср. Это еще вилами по воде писано.





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