Bilingual Dictionaries US-UK
Thread poster: chaplin

chaplin
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:50
English to French
+ ...
Sep 15, 2011

Helllo everyone

Now that American is used more and more it would be helpful to know what it means in English. This would help me to put it in good French. Thanks for your help!


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:50
Member (2008)
Italian to English
For instance? Sep 15, 2011

Ségolène Neilson wrote:

Helllo everyone

Now that American is used more and more it would be helpful to know what it means in English. This would help me to put it in good French. Thanks for your help!


Hi Ségolène- a few examples might help, if you could give them.

Generally, American English is comprehensible to speakers of British English, and vice-verse. The differences are quite superficial - although it is important to understand them, because it's very inelegant to mix the two.

[Edited at 2011-09-15 11:54 GMT]


 

Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:50
German to English
possible tip Sep 15, 2011

Hello Ségolène,
There are several resources in the Internet, but they all seem more or less entertainment oriented (= slang, etc.).

I just came across the title of another book in Butcher's Copy-Editing; I haven't had the chance to take a look at it, but it looks somewhat more promising:

Norman Schur, British English A to Zed (several updated editions)

As Tom said, though, if you are not translating into English, you will rarely have any need for this kind of depth. There are some US-UK "faux amis", but these are pretty rare. A professionally relevant example is the verb "to table"; "rubber" or "pants" offer humorous examples.

If you are translating into English, you need good dictionaries, good style guides, and a healthy s(k/c)eptism about the true extent of your knowledge and experience. As an American, it would never have occured to me that "pushchair" or "way out" (in the sense of "exit") are anything other than miserable translations - if I hadn't looked them up. And also never trust Oxford's opinions about US English or Webster's opinions about UK English (this can be a good place to start, but they are wrong as often as not).

This is something of a pet project of mine and I have an expanding US-UK terminology that I would like to put online at some point, but it will probably take a while. The fine grammatical differences are probably more important anyway - and more annoying to readers from the wrong region.

Sincerely,
Michael


 

Emma Goldsmith  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:50
Member (2010)
Spanish to English
The Economist Style Guide Sep 15, 2011

The Economist Style Guide has a chapter on US-UK differences that I use for reference sometimes. It also has a (short) list of words that are acceptable in both to replace words that are exclusively British.
It may well be too basic for you, but it could provide a starting point.

Michael Wetzel wrote:
This is something of a pet project of mine and I have an expanding US-UK terminology that I would like to put online at some point


Looking forward to it! Let us know when it's up and running.


 

chaplin
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:50
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Sep 15, 2011

Thank you for your help! You are right about not really translating into English. I have been translating business letters and documentsThere are phrases like I look forward to your response which is the American for your reply. A response in English is the way you react! Funny enough it seems to have come from the French réponse.
When I was at university in France we were always told to check the words from English US to English UK when we had any doubt. This dictionary was in the university library and I miss it.

It would be nice to have more dictionary references.

Thanks for your cooperation

Kind regards

Ségolène


 

xxxEAP2011
United Kingdom
List of useful sources Sep 15, 2011

Hi Ségolène,

I am sure there are numerous hard-copy and online sources for US-UK dictionaries. I've just compiled a summary of those ones I consider are valuable ones. Hope this helpsicon_smile.gifhttp://www.effingpot.com/

http://www.travelfurther.net/dictionaries/

http://www.usa-vs-uk.com/usvsuk-dictionary.html

http://www.translatebritish.com/dictionary

http://www.bbcamerica.com/content/141/dictionary.jsp

http://www.af4k.com/english.htm

http://www.orlando-guide.info/forums/forumdisplay.php/47-US-UK-Dictionary

http://esl.about.com/library/vocabulary/blbritam.htm

http://members.peak.org/~jeremy/dictionaryclassic/links/

http://www.winedt.org/Dict/


 


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