Chinese to English: siheyuan Detailed field: Poetry & Literature
Source text - Chinese 四合院 Si He Yuan
China is a large country with very complicated natural conditions and weather that varies widely from region to region. With 56 different ethnic groups, there is a rich variety of customs and habits. This leads to very diverse styles and structures in the residential architecture of China . Si He Yuan, a housing compound enclosed on four sides, is the typical traditional housing in the northern part of China, especially in Beijing.
Si He Yuan is a rectangular compound with traditional one-story buildings built on four sides. They are connected by corridors with a yard in the center. The whole compound is enclosed except for the gate, which is usually located at the southeast corner. The rooms situated in the north of the compound facing south are the largest and the highest and, therefore, are typically occupied by the master of the family. Those on the east and the west are for children. The kitchen and the bathroom are on either side of the master’s suite.
A Si He Yuan usually consists of two yards, one in the front and one in the back. The master’s suite is located in the back yard (also called inner yard) while rooms in the front yard(also called outer yard) are used for guests
or servants. Housemaids are placed in the far back north of the compound behind the master’s suite. Those back rooms may also be used as storage rooms.
As you enter the main gate of a Si he Yuan, you will see before you a low wall with various decorations on it. This serves as a barrier to prevent outsiders from seeing the inner yard, something considered necessary for good Feng Shui 風水(geomancy.) In the middle of the inner yard is an open space that serves as a venue for all kinds of activities.
Today, as cities move toward modernization, many Si He Yuan have been replaced by high-rise apartment buildings. In order to preserve the tradition and the culture of Si he Yuan, the Chinese government has created laws to protect them so that future generations will still be able to see how their ancestors lived.
Chinese to English: 錯誤 Detailed field: Poetry & Literature
Source text - Chinese 錯誤 /鄭愁予
Translation - English I pass by Jiang Nan,
Waiting in the seasons, your face is
Like the blooming and falling of a lotus blossom.
The East Wind doesn’t blow,
The catkins don’t fly in March,
Your heart is a small, lonely town, like
Slate paved streets in the dusk,
No sound of footsteps,
No lifting of the curtains in March,
Your heart is like
A small, tightly closed window.
The sound of my horse hoofs is a beautiful mistake,
I am not returning home, only passing by.
Years of translation experience: 13. Registered at ProZ.com: Jan 2010.
I hold a Master's degree in Communication as well as Chinese language and literature.
I've been writing short stories in both Chinese and English for over 10 years. Most of my works have been published in Chinese Daily News-- the biggest Chinese newspaper in the world. I also translated my stories from Chinese to English and vice-versa.
Besides teaching Chinese in college, I also work part-time for a financial company. I helped set up meetings with Chinese owned banks and worked as an interpreter during company meetings.
In the mean time, I am helping the company to translate a 100 page business proposal.
Keywords: Chinese, literature, education, finance, southern California