What's the English translation of "gut dreißig Kilometer"? As in:

Es befindet sich gut dreißig Kilometer außerhalb von London?

I'm not sure whether it's 'a good thirty kilometres' or 'some thirty kilometres', although I'm tending towards the former.

  • 5
    Since it is not hard to explain the meaning, you should ask on ELU.
    – Em1
    Jul 3 '12 at 20:51
  • 3
    +1 because it never occurred to me just how handy and concise those two really are: "knapp" and "gut". As for your question: I always thought "some" was the idiomatic equivalent.
    – Mac
    Jul 3 '12 at 20:53
  • @Em1: Noted, I'll ask the questions that are easy to explain on ELU. Perhaps that's why your questions usually get closed there, wrong theory.
    – Gigili
    Jul 3 '12 at 21:03
  • Besides the answers another alternative might be "just a little more than 30 km"
    – Em1
    Jul 4 '12 at 7:05
  • A discussion with Matt Эллен (on ELU) pointed out that "a good" is an idiomatic casual phrasing. He's not entirely sure if it always mean "greater". Alternatives are "just over", "barely over", "nearly over", ... Normally you have to add "over" or "under" to determine the direction, but "odd" will mean a bit more, while "nearly" and "close to" might've the meaning of less than.
    – Em1
    Jul 4 '12 at 9:26

From a discussion on dict.leo.org:

Just over thirty kilometers.

When combined with something countable, gut means slightly more (it's opposite being knapp, which means slightly less).

  • So, as opposite you can take "just under" :)
    – Em1
    Jul 4 '12 at 7:06
  • 1
    Interesting. I always used "gut" in the sense of "about" or "circa" but Duden confirms your statement that it always means "a bit more".
    – musiKk
    Jul 4 '12 at 7:09
  • 1
    @musiKk: If you want to say "about" you use "rund" or "etwa".
    – celtschk
    Jul 6 '12 at 12:41
  • @celtschk: Yeah, I know. It's just something that I apparently mistook my whole life.
    – musiKk
    Jul 6 '12 at 14:24

A literal English translation of "gut dreißig Kilometer" is "a good thirty kilometers."

In this case, the literal English translation is also a accurate translation of the German. They both mean "30 kilometers" PLUS.


Personally, I would say

about thirty kilometres

  • 1
    I think this would be the one to choose for ungefähr dreißig Kilometer ... around thirty kilometres would also fit for that one.
    – takrl
    Jul 5 '12 at 6:43
  • 2
    This really doesn't fit "gut dreißig Kilometer"! Jul 8 '12 at 6:19

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