In the XVIIth century sentence "Sono cosi diversi i sentieri per li quali s’incamina al possesso del buono nella Pittura," how would you translate "s’incamina al possesso del buono nella Pittura"? Possess the good in painting isn't right. Master excellence in painting?

  • Welcome to Italian.SE, @JeanB!
    – Charo
    Nov 20, 2015 at 14:16

1 Answer 1


First your sentence is incomplete, I'll do my best to guess how it should continue (because the translation might depend on that). I think

The paths to reach mastery in Painting are so different [...]

is a good free translation. Depending on how the sentence continues you could also say

There are so many different paths towards skill in Painting [...]

If you want a more strict translation you could say

The paths through whom one can set forth to own the skill in Painting are so different [...]

(yes, it sounds a bit clunky in English).

  • Maybe have the skill is better English than own the skill, I cannot make up my mind (Italian possedere is much closer to own than to have). Master the skill is another possibility but I feel it has a slightly different meaning.
    – Denis Nardin
    Nov 20, 2015 at 14:57
  • Thank you so much for the responses. I like the first option. Here's the complete sentence if you think it makes a difference in the interpretation: "Sono cosi diversi i sentieri per li quali s’incamina al possesso del buono nella Pittura, che, per la loro varietà, e diferenza, formano un Laberinto più confuso di quello di Creta nel quale si nascondeva il Minotauro."
    – JeanB
    Nov 20, 2015 at 16:36
  • @JeanB I think the translations are more or less adequate. I would just caution that I think that il buono here is slightly less than mastery (hence all my other translations with skill), but it does not matter in the context of the sentence.
    – Denis Nardin
    Nov 20, 2015 at 16:49

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