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HAVING NO CORRESPONDENCE IN TL




There are several ways of translating such words. The simplest way is to transcribe them (lobby - лобби, lump - ламп, спутник - sputnik, комсомол - Komsomol, etc.). This method is widely used for rendering personal names, placenames, titles of periodicals, names of firms and companies.

Sometimes transliteration is used for the same purpose, but transcription is preferable because it renders the original sound-form of the word, while transliteration is based upon its graphical presentation (cf. two ways of rendering the name of Shakespeare in Russian: its transcription is Шекспир while its transliteration is Схакеспеаре). It is evident that for the purposes of oral communication it is necessary to know the sound-form of the names, so with the growth of contacts between the countries transliteration is being gradually ousted by transcription. Those names which have already been rendered by means of transliteration are now traditionally used in this form (King George - король Георг, not король Джордж) and there is no need to change them. Such names should not be translated anew, ­they have their translated equivalents. However, in translating those names which have no equivalents, it is preferable to use transcription. Being a very good way of rendering proper names, transcription is not very convenient for translating notional words. Substitution of the Russian sounds for the English ones does not make the English word understandable for the Russian readers. The words "драгстор" or "ламп" are hardly more informative for them than the original "drugstore" or "lump". That is why transcription is often combined with footnotes or explanations introduced into the text by the translator. As soon as the new word is thus explained it can be freely used in the text in its transcribed form. A good example of such introduction of a foreign word is found in one of G.Simenon's books:

...они отправились на авеню Фридланд к юрисконсульту посольства - к "солиситору", как его называют американцы. ...Солиситор позвонил по телефону следователю... А затем они возвратились в "Мажестик", и там Кларк в компании с солиситором. выпили в баре по две рюмки виски ...

(translated by Н.Немчинова)

The word "solicitor" here is transcribed and its meaning is explained ("юрисконсульт"), after which the transcription is used without further explanation.

The same method is used when translating the names of companies or titles of periodicals. E.g. "'Daily Express' reports ..." should be translated as "Английская консервативная газета "Дейли Экспресс" сообщает ..." because the title 'Daily Express' is well known to the Englishmen and "Дейли Экспресс" is not known (and not informative in itself) for the Russian readers.

It is necessary to remember that explanations and footnotes contain additional information which is not expressed directly in the original text and is introduced by the translator. So it demands great knowledge on the part of the translator. In case of composite words loan-translations (кальки) can be coined in the TL, e.g. the English noun "moonquake" is quite adequately translated as "лунотрясение", "as well as the Russian "луноход" is rendered in English as "moon crawler".

The next method of translating words having no correspondence in TL is based on approximate rendering of the notion (приближенный перевод). It can be described as ‘translation on the analogy'. If a word in SL expresses some notion that has no name in TL it is necessary to look for some analogous, similar (though not identical) notion in TL. E.g.: if we are not translating a cookery book but a story or a novel it is quite possible to translate the Russian "кисель" as "jelly", though actually they are different things (they use starch for "кисель" and gelatin for jelly). Another example - in our country we do not use wardrobe trunks and it is next to impossible to find a Russian way of expressing this notion, but usually (unless it is very important for the context) it can be quite satisfactorily translated as чемодан (or, if necessary, ­большой чемодан).

The last way out of the difficulty caused by lack of correspondence between words of SL and TL is the so-called descriptive translation (описательный перевод). In this case the meaning of one word in SL is rendered by a group of words in TL ("spacewalk" - "выход в открытый космос", "spacesick" - " не переносящий условий космического полета"; "свмодеятельность" - ­"amateur talent activities", "районирование" - "division into districts", etc.).

So there are five principal ways of translating words that have no direct lexical correspondences in TL. They are 1) transcription, 2) footnotes and explanations, 3) loan translation, 4) analogical translation, and 5) descriptive translation. They all have certain drawbacks and their use is limited both by linguistic and extralinguistic factors (explanations make the text too long and sometimes clumsy, loan translation is applicable only to composite words, analogues are not always accurate enough, etc.). However, proper combination of these means makes it possible to translate any text rendering all the necessary information. When choosing the means of translating it is also important to keep in view stylistic characteristics of the text itself and of different words in both the languages. Special attention should be paid to peculiarities of word combinability in TL, which may differ greatly from that of SL.

 







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