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In this song: Canção de embalar we have this verse:

Dorme quinda à noite é uma menina

I do not understand what is the subject of "è" and what "quinda" means - I found this: "Espécie de cesto cylíndrico, sem tampa." but I do not see how it would be related to the context.

1 Answer 1

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That "quinda", or even better "qu'inda", is simply the contraction of que + ainda (for instance, see here).

Thus, this gives us:

Dorme que ainda a noite é uma menina (sleep, for the night is still a child)

By the way, despite most websites with lyrics showing "à noite" that's wrong, it should be just "a noite".

By far the most famous appearance of "qu'inda" is in Canção do exílio, by Gonçalves Dias:

Minha terra tem palmeiras,
Onde canta o Sabiá;
As aves, que aqui gorjeiam,
Não gorjeiam como lá.

[...]

Sem qu'inda aviste as palmeiras,
Onde canta o Sabiá.

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    Gerardo, quinda is actually a mispelling: the correct spelling is q'inda. And inda (Priberam) is a word, not a contraction. In fact, Houaiss says inda is the original, and ainda was formed after it.
    – Jacinto
    Nov 13, 2021 at 8:13

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