I'll never forget hearing


“I'll never forget hearing this piece of music for the first time.” (OALD)
난 이 곡을 처음 듣던 때를 결코 잊지 못할 거야. (OALD’s Korean version)

I read the original sentence as “I’ll never forget the fact that I heard this piece of music for the first time.” Yet the Korean version is “I’ll never forget the time I heard this piece of music.” What does the sentence mean?


Posted 2014-09-28T00:59:14.533

Reputation: 25 811

Can you clarify what you thought the sentence meant? Do you mean that you thought it was saying "I was the first person to hear this music, and I will never forget that fact?" (Like if someone was writing a song and you happened to be there the first time they sang it out loud?). – msouth – 2014-09-29T04:46:16.400



What will never be forgotten is neither the fact nor the occasion but the hearing itself: the experience of hearing the music for the first time.

StoneyB on hiatus

Posted 2014-09-28T00:59:14.533

Reputation: 176 469

Not sure I agree on the "nor the occasion" part--"for the first time" is an important modifier here, as one can infer that subsequent hearings of the piece were not as memorable. But I completely agree that it's "the hearing" that is being remembered. But if the Korean version leaves the first-time-ness out, it's missing something--that version (as translated back to English by OP) sounds somewhat as if it were the only time the speaker heard the music, while the English version implies it has been heard since, but the occasion of the first hearing was particularly memorable. – msouth – 2014-09-29T04:42:48.837

1@msouth Yes, I maybe expressed myself a little too pithily there. By 'occasion' I meant that it is not the 'time' the speaker remembers, the date, the context, the attendant circumstances, but the 'hearing-it-for-the-first-time'. – StoneyB on hiatus – 2014-09-29T12:10:55.373

I understand now. You're saying it's not meant to express the remembrance of what a programmer would refer to as the "timestamp"--the date and time of the incident. That is a useful clarification. – msouth – 2014-09-29T15:30:44.993