Mieux vaut tard que jamais.
mee-yuh vo taar kuh zhah-MAY. Click below to hear this.*
Better late than never.
It’s a proverb, and that’s why the grammar seems a bit telegraphic. The full expression is il vaut mieux followed by a verb in the infinitive: it is better to…
In this case, there’s no verb following the expression. Instead, there are two adverbs (tard and jamais) that are acting like nouns. Really, it’s just like the English: late and never aren’t nouns either, but they do a good job of pretending.
And that verb? Vaut comes from valoir, a very irregular verb that means to be worth.
Anyway, that’s my post for today–at 10:30pm, when I had hoped to publish it at 10:00am. And tomorrow will probably be late too, because I’ll be spending the whole day translating Spanish for a client. Please accept my apologies in advance! I do have an interesting life. I never know what’s going to happen next!
*Some mobile phones, such as Blackberries, won’t display the audio player. If no player appears, here’s an alternative link to the audio file: