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Als die Raben noch bunt waren

English translation: When the Crows were Multicolored

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11:02 Nov 14, 2001
German to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary
German term or phrase: Als die Raben noch bunt waren
A company that is designing CD roms for children, around various themes.
This one is around a book by Edith Schreiber-Wicke

i searched the web, and refernce was made to : When the Crows were Multicolored, but apparently it hasn't been published in English.

Whast do I do in this case? Leave it in German, or provide theEnglish title, although it is not yet officially in print -some people suggest putting the English in brackets after the German, but this is a brochure, describing their product, and it wouldn't look good
Kyra
United States
Local time: 05:15
English translation:When the Crows were Multicolored
Explanation:
Very context sensitive.

Case 1. CD-Rom in English, and you need to refer to the German book.
In that case if an English title appears to have been chosen, I would use that one, regardless of what I think of it. (This is the case shown above.)

Case 2. If this is a brochure in English about a CD-Rom which is in German, use the German title and a bracketed translation as in case 1.

Case 3. If all you need is a title for the brochure, with no further implications, then make your own translation. I like
"When crows were brightly colored" or one of the others put forward.

Case 4. Are you actually choosing the title for the CD-Rom?
That would seem odd. I'd still shoot for a lively translation of the German title in that case.

hope there's something helpful in there ...
Selected response from:

xxxAbu Amaal
Grading comment
Thank you very much for the detailed help. Yes, I asked the client, and they said to leave it in German, with an Engish equivalent in brackets behind it.
Thanks!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +2Add English title
Kim Metzger
4 +1When Crows had colorsNancy Schmeing
4When ravens were of many colours
Mats Wiman
4When the Crows were MulticoloredxxxAbu Amaal
4when there were multi-coloured ravenspatpending
4When the crows were of many colors...Annette Aryanpour
4Long, long ago, when the crows were still of many colors
Dr. Fred Thomson
3Als die Raben noch bunt waren
Patrick Hubenthal


  

Answers


11 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
Add English title


Explanation:
I would use the English title and in parenthes add *working title*

Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 07:15
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 21844

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Werner George Patels, M.A., C.Tran.(ATIO)
43 mins

agree  Thomas Bollmann
4 hrs
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Long, long ago, when the crows were still of many colors


Explanation:
The problem with a straight translation is that (to the best of my knowledge) we have no counterpart in English for the German idiom.
So, we need to provide more information in order to carry the meaning.
If this is a book for children (or a title for children) then "of many colors" works better than "multi-colored."
You might even say "before the crows had lost there many colors," but this is probably too long.
Anyway, good luck!

Dr. Fred Thomson
United States
Local time: 06:15
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in pair: 5861

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Eivind Lilleskjaeret: Might not be very important, but "Raben" are "ravens", not "crows". Like your title, though
29 mins
  -> Eivind! Sie haben vollkommen recht!
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
When the crows were of many colors...


Explanation:
I suggest a simpler translation of the title such as this one. There is a children's book in English that is called "Where the Wild Things Are". This title reminds me of it. The title seems to be part of a text that will repeat itself within the book. So it is okay to leave it as an unfinished sentence. "When the crows were" already imply that is was once upon a time. Multi-colored doesn't sound very good. I agree. I wouldn't put working title or any parentheses, but rather offer the options to the client. It's better to ask than to guess.

Annette Aryanpour
United States
Local time: 05:15
PRO pts in pair: 8
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
Als die Raben noch bunt waren


Explanation:
It would help if we knew who the potential readers of this brochure are, but based on the info you've given, I'd say, leave it in German. I'm assuming the brochure is aimed at English-language publishers who might want this company to create CD-ROMs of their books too; if so, they're probably going to be more interested in how the CD-ROM looks and works than in how the book's title translates into English.

Patrick Hubenthal
Local time: 06:15
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 40
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4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
When the Crows were Multicolored


Explanation:
Very context sensitive.

Case 1. CD-Rom in English, and you need to refer to the German book.
In that case if an English title appears to have been chosen, I would use that one, regardless of what I think of it. (This is the case shown above.)

Case 2. If this is a brochure in English about a CD-Rom which is in German, use the German title and a bracketed translation as in case 1.

Case 3. If all you need is a title for the brochure, with no further implications, then make your own translation. I like
"When crows were brightly colored" or one of the others put forward.

Case 4. Are you actually choosing the title for the CD-Rom?
That would seem odd. I'd still shoot for a lively translation of the German title in that case.

hope there's something helpful in there ...

xxxAbu Amaal
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 24
Grading comment
Thank you very much for the detailed help. Yes, I asked the client, and they said to leave it in German, with an Engish equivalent in brackets behind it.
Thanks!
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9 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
When ravens were of many colours


Explanation:
Building on Eivind's comment I feel the indefinite form is better.


    CCP1
Mats Wiman
Sweden
Local time: 14:15
Native speaker of: Native in SwedishSwedish
PRO pts in pair: 1498
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16 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
When Crows had colors


Explanation:
Give it an English title. They already know the German and can use it if they wish.

It doesn't matter whether you use the exact literal meaning of the work bunt. The word for bunt in English is probably pied, as in the poem Pied Beauty, by G M Hopkins. What does matter a lot is the punchy, off-hand way it is said. That goes down the drain with wordiness. It also doesn't matter that Krahen are crows and Raben are ravens. In one quick second the listener gets the feel of the fabled world if you say: When crows had colors...
Or, if you prefer, When ravens were rainbows...


Nancy Schmeing
Canada
Local time: 08:15
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 328

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Kevin Fulton: Literature requires emotional, not technical accuracy
10 hrs
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1 day 4 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
when there were multi-coloured ravens


Explanation:
the use of "colour" automatically brings into question whether this is for the home or overseas market!

I would call this the "Grass dilemma" where the argumentative pigeons (Tauben) on Danzig town hall are compared to peaceful doves (Tauben)...



patpending
Local time: 13:15
PRO pts in pair: 51
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