ACCURACY IN CHINESE-ENGLISH TRANSLATION
Accuracy is the one of the basic elements in translation. It includes the weight of the word, range, praise or blame, color, collocation, and the option of Thesaurus and Synonyms.
These below are some examples in common translation:
Translation: Like most people here, he likes to eat potatoes.
Analysis: If we translate “和这里的人一样” as “Like all people here”, it is not accurate. Because it’s not possible that everyone likes potatoes, it only can be “most of people like potatoes” which is logical then.
Translation: This kindled the prairie fire in revolutionary armed struggle.
Analysis: If we translate “点燃” to “light”, it is not enough. It doesn’t match the atmosphere of the whole sentence. Then we choose “kindle” as a verb.
Translation: They are actively consolidating their victories.
Analysis: “victory gains” is not appropriate for “战果”, because sometimes it refers to “the spoils of war”.
Translation: This man is a trafficker of opium.
Analysis: “secretly selling” is not appropriate for “私贩”, on one hand, it can’t express the derogatory sense, on the other hand, it is not of adequate levels.
Translation: He was whistling as he sauntered along the beach.
Analysis: There are so many words in English that can be translated as “走”，they are slightly differentiated by postures or ways. Therefore, when we translate the word “走”, we shall not translate them into “walk” all in the same key.
Translation: He thought this would lessen the chance of the project’s being stopped before it really got under way.
Analysis: It is accurately translated for “the chance of the project’s being stopped” and “before” here, almost to an irreplaceable extend. “before” here especially express the charm of idiomatic English.
Translation: The poetess knew spring was coming, for she saw some swallows.
Analysis: “for” is used mainly for explaining the last sentence, it is less light than “because” in tone. “because” is mainly used for explaining the reasons, it shows a kind of accent cause and effect relationship, so “because” is not appropriated here in this sentence.
From the example sentences above, we can see how important accuracy is in Chinese to English translation is. Next time, we will discuss “conciseness” in translation. See you later.