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:

1. 和这里的人一样,他也喜欢吃土豆。

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.

2. 这就点燃了武装斗争的燎原大火。

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.

3. 他们在积极巩固战果。

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”.

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4. 这个人私贩鸦片。

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.

5. 他吹着口哨沿海滨漫步。

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.

6. 他想这样会使工程及时全面展开,从而减少中途停工的可能。

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.

7. 女诗人知道春天就要到了,因为她看到了一些燕子。

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.

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