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'Que culpa tiene el tomate'


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Irthlingz 31 Jul 20 - 01:38 AM
Monique 31 Jul 20 - 02:10 AM
Monique 31 Jul 20 - 02:22 AM
Monique 31 Jul 20 - 03:14 AM
Irthlingz 04 Aug 20 - 10:22 PM
Monique 05 Aug 20 - 12:52 AM
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Subject: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Irthlingz
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 01:38 AM

I think I understand the literal meaning of the lyrics of this folk song, 'Que culpa tiene el tomate' which originated during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). This version is by a Chilean group:

I have posted the Spanish and my translation here: (There are also some chords and some modern environmentalist lyrics for those who might be interested.)

There are a two things in particular that I'm curious about:

1) In the second half of the first verse, it says that "four rogues" tread on the worker's wife. Does anyone have any idea who these four rogues are?

2) In the first half of the third verse, why do the mine bosses purchase a *Roman* woman to weigh the money they steal from the poor worker?

Thanks for any suggestions on this!


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Subject: RE: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Monique
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 02:10 AM

1- "four rogues" is just a way to say "some/a few" just the same way you say "I'll tell them a word or two".
2 - A "romana" is what you call a steelyard.

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Subject: RE: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Monique
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 02:22 AM

Michael, I hadn't read your translation before answering your question but you need to fix a couple of things...

Y viene un hijo de puta
y lo mete en una lata
y lo manda pa' Caracas.

...these "lo" refer to the tomato = And here comes a son of a bitch and (he) puts it in a can and (he) sends it to Caracas. Una "lata" is a can (tin), not a box (una caja).

"Señor" can mean "gentleman" but in this case it means "master".

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Subject: RE: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Monique
Date: 31 Jul 20 - 03:14 AM

Btw the song has other titles (Que la tortilla se vuelva / La hierba de los caminos) and is of Spanish origin so "tortilla" is Spanish omelette.
From there...
"The grass of the roads" is a theme that compiles verses that the republicans sang in the trenches during the civil war, from the first verse, which was appropriated by Corruco de Algeciras, singer of La Línea de la Concepción that made Manuel Vallejo himself cry the first time he heard him sing, up to the very popular "Let the rich eat bread and the rich eat shit." -Google translation.

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Subject: RE: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Irthlingz
Date: 04 Aug 20 - 10:22 PM

Thank you, Monique, for all the enlightenment! I have changed the English at based on your comments.

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Subject: RE: 'Que culpa tiene el tomate'
From: Monique
Date: 05 Aug 20 - 12:52 AM

You should also change the tense of the verbs of the 2nd part of the 2nd verse: "viene" = comes (3rd pers. sing. present tense), "mete" (ditto), "manda" ditto. "Came" would be "vino", "put" would be "puso" and "sent" would be "mandó".

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