Should I translate incorrectly written polish expressions into incorrect English words?
Thread poster: PJ999
PJ999
Poland
Nov 26, 2016

Hi, I'd be grateful if you could write what would you do in such a situation:
I have a text in Polish, it is a complaint regarding the provision of legal services. The lawyer whom the complaint concerns is half-Polish and in the letter of complaint there are some of his messages cited, always with the statement: Original spelling because the statements are incorrect e.g. Chciałbym zycyc wsyskiego najlepszego i zapytac o pana zdrowie, prosze napisac kiedy mozemy sie spotkac.

What would you do - would translate into English with spelling mistakes or not?

I made a decision but I'm wondering what would others do.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Monika Gromm  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:42
Member (2016)
English to German
+ ...
No Nov 26, 2016

Joanna Joanna wrote:


What would you do - would translate into English with spelling mistakes or not?



You have basically two possibilities - either contact the customer and ask them how they wish this to be handled or translate correctly and place an explanation in brackets under or within the texts (I don't know how you do it normally).

The most important question would be - is it a sworn translation?


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Heike Drescher  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:42
Member (2013)
English to German
+ ...
translate spelling mistakes Nov 26, 2016

Normally I translate obvious spelling mistakes into correct English. However, in this specific case I think a translator's note concerning the spelling mistakes in the original is indispensable.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Anna Siewruk  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:42
English to Polish
+ ...
Correct English spellings (perhaps with a note) Nov 26, 2016

Hello! In this type of document I would use correct English spellings. (I think that if the fact that the lawyer made mistakes matters for whatever reason then you should add a note in brackets to explain the type of mistakes he made etc. but still use correct English).

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 23:42
Member (2005)
English to German
^This Nov 26, 2016

I would translate correctly and add one (1) note for the entire text.

Artificial spelling mistakes would seem unprofessional to me in a non-fictional context - the only place I would possibly imitate them is in a children's book or poetry that relies on the concept of spelling mistakes, but that's a whole different genre.

[Edited at 2016-11-27 08:23 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Anton Konashenok  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 23:42
English to Russian
+ ...
No, make a note Nov 26, 2016

There is no real way to translate spelling errors unless you are dealing with intentional misspelling in fiction. In a legal paper, you can give a correct translation and append a note, for example:

[translator's note: words 'XXX' and 'YYY' are misspelled in the source]

If necessary, you can also explain how this error might affect the perceived meaning of the text. The same can be done for other kinds of errors - missing words, wrong usage, wrong syntax, etc. Such notes are typically given in square brackets or, if you are using MS Word, as Word comments.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:42
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Generally speaking, no Nov 26, 2016

But I once translated a novel from Russian in which a Russian major used a Spanish term incorrectly, so I wasn't sure if this was deliberate to show the major did not know Spanish well. I asked the author, and it turned out it was the author's error and he wanted it in correct Spanish.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andrzej Mierzejewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:42
Polish to English
+ ...
My suggestion Nov 26, 2016

The server showed a small part of my post only, and that occurred twice, therefore I decided to remove it. I'll try again tomorrow.

[Zmieniono 2016-11-26 23:33 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andrzej Mierzejewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:42
Polish to English
+ ...
My suggestion Nov 26, 2016

That was the second attempt.

[Zmieniono 2016-11-26 23:34 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andrzej Mierzejewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:42
Polish to English
+ ...
My third attempt Nov 27, 2016

I'm a Polish national. I can see several missing signs (characters), and several missing diacritic signs (a very important issue, sometimes can cause misunderstanding).

I'd solve the issue in this way, with bold fonts:

Original text with spelling errors: Chciałbym zycyc wsyskiego najlepszego i zapytac o pana zdrowie, prosze napisac kiedy mozemy sie spotkac.

Original text corrected: Chciałbym życzyć wszystkiego najlepszego i zapytać o pana zdrowie, proszę napisać, kiedy możemy się spotkać. (Note: the missing comma was added between 'napisać' and 'kiedy' in compliance with Polish grammar rules.)

The sentence means: I'd like to wish you all the best and ask about your health, please write when we can meet.

That's how I see the easiest possible solution to Joanna Joanna's issue. By the way I hope that all readers will see Polish diacritics as I wrote them.



[Zmieniono 2016-11-27 15:39 GMT]

[Zmieniono 2016-11-28 11:51 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Andrzej Mierzejewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 23:42
Polish to English
+ ...
removed by author Nov 27, 2016

removed by author

[Zmieniono 2016-11-27 15:38 GMT]

[Zmieniono 2016-11-27 15:39 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Mario Chavez  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:42
English to Spanish
+ ...
Good solution Nov 27, 2016

Andrzej Mierzejewski wrote:

I'm a Polish national. I can see several missing signs (characters), and several missing diacritic signs (a very important issue, sometimes can cause misunderstanding).

I'd solve the issue in this way, with bold fonts:

Original text with spelling errors: Chciałbym zycyc wsyskiego najlepszego i zapytac o pana zdrowie, prosze napisac kiedy mozemy sie spotkac.

Original text corrected: Chciałbym życzyć wszystkiego najlepszego i zapytać o pana zdrowie, proszę napisać, kiedy możemy się spotkać. (Note: the missing comma was added between 'napisać' and 'kiedy' in compliance with Polish grammar rules.)

The sentence means: I'd like to wish you all the best and ask about your health, please write when we can meet.

That's how I see the easiest possible solution to Joanna Joanna's issue. By the way I hope that all readers will see Polish diacritics as I wrote them.



[Zmieniono 2016-11-27 15:39 GMT]


Andrzej,

Thank you for sharing this practical solution with the OP and the rest of us. I don't read Polish but I could see all the diacritics and the correct terms.

There is no single correct solution to handling this problem. Obviously, I would be against leaving the misspelled Polish words as misspelled English words, since 1) that was not the author's intent (his errors weren't deliberate) and 2) the function or objective of the text is a greeting, pure and simple. Skopos theory at work, folks.



Direct link Reply with quote
 


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


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

Should I translate incorrectly written polish expressions into incorrect English words?

Advanced search







Anycount & Translation Office 3000
Translation Office 3000

Translation Office 3000 is an advanced accounting tool for freelance translators and small agencies. TO3000 easily and seamlessly integrates with the business life of professional freelance translators.

More info »
SDL MultiTerm 2017
Guarantee a unified, consistent and high-quality translation with terminology software by the industry leaders.

SDL MultiTerm 2017 allows translators to create one central location to store and manage multilingual terminology, and with SDL MultiTerm Extract 2017 you can automatically create term lists from your existing documentation to save time.

More info »



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