Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Off topic: English and Spanish Nuances
Thread poster: yolanda Speece
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
Oct 9, 2004

I have noticed after translating for so many years that there are certain nuances in each language that are different and would be downright funny if they were translated literally. An example would be to say in ENG "I missed my flight" and in SPA "Me dejó el vuelo". In Spanish it is "the flight left me" instead of "I missed my flight". Does anyone know where I could go to find more of these types of differences? Is there a place on line

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 16:58
German to English
English and Spanish Nuances Oct 9, 2004

Hi Yolanda,

Here's a list of Spanish idioms with literal translations and equivalent English idioms.

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Thebes/6177/idioms.htm

Kim

[Edited at 2004-10-09 21:00]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
English and Spanish Nuances Oct 9, 2004

Thanks for the input! That was pretty fast.

However, I wasn't looking so much toward idioms as much as just differences in the way we express ourselves. Let me show you a couple of examples:

ENGLISH SPANISH
Provide a service Prestar un servicio
the plane took off se despegó el avión

In English, you don't lend out a service, you provide it and the plane does not come unglued, it takes off. It detaches from the runway but it does not come apart at least you don't want it to while you are on board!

If you think about these two phrases, it's quite amusing.

Imagine this on a brochure.
"Please keep your seatbelts on while the plane falls apart."

instead of

"Please keep your seatbelts on during take off."

Excuse me while I LOL(HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA)!


I was just thinking about this and thought it would be neat to save these or make my own notebook with these "differences"


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ines Garcia Botana  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:58
Member
English to Spanish
+ ...
Funny! Oct 9, 2004

There is a book written by Basil Thomson, "Ramon Writes", which is a selection of humorous columns written in the form of letters from Ramon (without the accent) which appeared in the Buenos Aires Herald over a period of almost 30 years. They established Ramon as an immortal literary figure, a giant in Spanglish literature and a topic of conversation wherever Spanish and English are spoken.

How did it start? Basil was having tea with a friend when doubt arouse as to whose turn it was to pay. "I think, " said his companion in a deliberate paraphrase, "that it touches to me." They both chuckled at what in those days was referred to as Irish-Porteño and before leaving, spent an amusing ten minutes thinking up other Irish-Argentinisms. And then, another friend who had just returned from Mar del Plata by car said that "on the way back they pinched a gum..." Those were the first "ramonisms".

Here you have a paragraph: " Very esteemed friend: It gives me shame when I give myself count how long it makes that I do not werite to you. In truth it passed the time, and suddenly we find ourselves in the tomorrow..."

Hope you enjoy it!

If you cannot find the book (if interested) I can lend it to you.
Inés


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 19:58
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
Difficult as we don't say it in the same way everywhere Oct 9, 2004

I don't say "Me dejó el vuelo", but "perdí mi vuelo", and the plane doesn't unglue, as it "despega" and not "se despega", these are two different verbs. But this might be due to our country differences.

Claudia


Direct link Reply with quote
 
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I am so glad somebody got what I was trying to say Oct 10, 2004

Thanks, Inés, I am so glad you understood what I was looking for. This is the type of thing I was noticing. It isn't always funny but sometimes it makes you think about the subtle nuances between languages.

I am going to look for the book first. If I can't find it, then I will have to ask you to either make me copies or just e-mail me some.


I wouldn't feel right borrowing your book because if something happened to it... I would just feel awful!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:58
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Taking.... hair? Oct 10, 2004

"Tomar el pelo" may sound strange to an English speaker, but no more so than the equivalent English to a Spanish speaker: "You're pulling my leg!" And there is a variation on that which must be very baffling to non-English speakers: "Pull the other one, it's got bells on!"

Direct link Reply with quote
 
Gary Daine
English to Spanish
+ ...
"Speaking in Silver" ... Oct 10, 2004

is the title of a book I saw recently in a local (Sevilla) bookshop.
I'm afraid I don't have any more information on author, publisher, etc., but it shouldn't be too hard to locate. It is an amazing collection of "For if the flies", "From lost to the river", and similar 'translations'.
As the title, indeed, suggests.

Gary


Direct link Reply with quote
 
xxxLia Fail  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 23:58
Spanish to English
+ ...
polysemy and homonymy Oct 10, 2004

yolanda Speece wrote:


ENGLISH SPANISH
Provide a service Prestar un servicio
the plane took off se despegó el avión




What you need to do is have a look at polysemy and homonymy, definitions below.

'Prestar' doesn't exclusively mean 'lend', it also means 'provide'.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homonymy
Homonyms are words which have the same form (orthographic/phonetic) but unrelated meaning. If they only differ in one way, they are called homophones and homographs respectively. In derivation, homonym means "has the same name", homophone means "has the same sound", and homograph means "written the same".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polysemy
Polysemy is the state of being a polyseme, i.e. a word with multiple meanings, such as "The child started to walk" and "My mother used to dance the Lambeth Walk".


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andy Watkinson
Spain
Local time: 23:58
Member
Catalan to English
+ ...
Speaking in Silver Oct 10, 2004

Gary Daine wrote:

is the title of a book I saw recently in a local (Sevilla) bookshop.
I'm afraid I don't have any more information on author, publisher, etc., but it shouldn't be too hard to locate. It is an amazing collection of "For if the flies", "From lost to the river", and similar 'translations'.
As the title, indeed, suggests.

Gary


It's by Ignacio Ochoa and Federico López Socasau

Ed. "Temas de Hoy"

Son los mismos que escribieron "From lost to the River"


Direct link Reply with quote
 
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Okay Oct 10, 2004

I really appreciate everyone's input on this. You all are so sweet. Unfortunately, it appears that some do not quite understand what I am looking for.


With all due respect, let me establish that, as translators, we all know some words such as "prestar" don't exclusively mean "lend". Its meaning depends heavily on context. Like most words, it is about context.

What I am trying to say is this:

There are nuances which differ from language to language. If translated literally, it would prove entertaining.

Just for a moment, imagine you are NOT a native speaker of a language and you are NOT familiar with some of the nuances of the language, such as in the case with the word "prestar".

As a person who is not a native speaker, your ONLY knowledge of how to apply "prestar" is to "lend".

It isn't about what WE know, as translators, regarding how it is being used.

It is about how a person with a limited vocabulary looks at the language and how THEIR mind works.

There are differences and I am trying to find them because I thought it would make a fun study.

This is actually quite funny if you don't take it so seriously. This is supposed to be fun...

It is about the linguistic structure within the mind of a non-native speaker and how he/she switches from one language to another based on their knowledge not our knowledge.

There seems to be some confusion and I don't know why. I hope this explanation clarifies any confusion.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Alrightee! Oct 10, 2004

Claudia:


Share the ones you notice in your country.

[Edited at 2004-10-10 15:48]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

GoodWords  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 16:58
Spanish to English
+ ...
Here are some Oct 10, 2004

Examples where in English, you do things while in Spanish things happen to you:

Se me olvidó. I forgot [thing].
Se me perdió. I lost [thing].
Se me cayó. I dropped [thing].
Se me ocurrió. I thought of [thing].

Examples where in Spanish, you enunciate what you did, whereas in English, you state the result.

Ya vine. I'm back.
Ya llegamos. We're here/there.
Ya se fue. He/she/it's gone.
Ya se acabó. It's over.
Ya se durmió/despertó. He/she's asleep/awake now.
Ya me llené. I'm full.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
yolanda Speece  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:58
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
YES! YES! YES! YES! Oct 10, 2004

THANK YOU GOODWORDS!

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ines Garcia Botana  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:58
Member
English to Spanish
+ ...
Hi Yolanda Oct 10, 2004

Hi Yolanda,
I have just wanted to send you an email through Proz but I got this message:

You are on this member's block list--he or she does not wish to receive mail from you

I can scan some pages of "Ramon Writes" and send them to you by mail. It's really funny.

Keep in touch,

Inés


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

English and Spanish Nuances

Advanced search






PerfectIt consistency checker
Faster Checking, Greater Accuracy

PerfectIt helps deliver error-free documents. It improves consistency, ensures quality and helps to enforce style guides. It’s a powerful tool for pro users, and comes with the assurance of a 30-day money back guarantee.

More info »
TM-Town
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search