817 posts tagged with Translation.
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How should I get a lengthy Hungarian testimony transcribed/translated?

I've ordered a copy of my relative's Holocaust testimony on DVD. It's about five hours long, and it's in Hungarian - a language I don't speak. I want to have it transcribed, and I'd like to get at least an informal written or oral translation. What's the smartest way to do this, and would an informal translation be much cheaper than a "proper" one?
posted by Joe in Australia on Sep 26, 2016 - 9 answers

Harry Potter language question

The spells in the Harry Potter books are in a kind of Latin. There is a Latin translation of the first Harry Potter book. What language are the spells in that? (PLEASE SAY GREEK!) What language are the spells in the Greek translation? (PLEASE SAY EGYPTIAN!)
posted by thatwhichfalls on Aug 25, 2016 - 9 answers

Help with translating from shorthand

My friend came into possession of a 100-year-old maths textbook, and the front page contains handwritten text, apparently written in shorthand. Neither he nor I can read any form of shorthand, and Googling has proven fruitless, but he would love to get some idea of what it says.
posted by littlegreen on Aug 21, 2016 - 5 answers

How to say "Earth's Building Blocks" in Spanish?

I'm helping to build an exhibit about common rock-forming minerals. The entire exhibit has been translated into Spanish by a professional translator, but one phrase was missed (wasn't sent). Can you give me a translation for the phrase "Earth's Building Blocks"? [more inside]
posted by Secretariat on Jul 19, 2016 - 9 answers

Can you translate this short Arabic comment?

I got a short Arabic message from a new team member in an online game I play - Normally I would try my luck with Google translate but the app I'm viewing the message in doesn't do cut and paste. If anyone can translate the surname as well that would be awesome to! [more inside]
posted by inflatablekiwi on Jul 14, 2016 - 6 answers

What is this mystery play?

Yesterday, I ran across the proverb "Great cry and little wool, as the devil said when he sheared the hogs," along with the explanation that this came from "an old mystery play, David and Abigail, based on 1 Samuel." Where/when was this mystery play performed, and is its text available? [more inside]
posted by the sobsister on Jul 1, 2016 - 11 answers

Advice on reading Greek tragedies

I've always wanted to become intimately acquainted with the Greek tragedies, but there's a huge part of me that says, "If you're not going to learn Greek, what's the point?" So, are there translations that truly do justice to the source material? Perhaps more to the point, are there longstanding translations which have themselves become more or less a part of the Western canon? If so, can someone recommend any particular editions? I'm particularly interested in Antigone, The Bacchae, and The Oresteia. And finally, does anyone have experience learning Classical Greek later in life for the purpose of reading the plays and epics? Was it worthwhile?
posted by jwhite1979 on Jun 27, 2016 - 19 answers

Chinese Please

Can anyone translate the Chinese characters on this vase? I don't think it's valuable, but maybe it says something other than "Made in China"?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium on Jun 9, 2016 - 4 answers

Appropriate fee for doing some freelance research?

A colleague of mine has some photographs of archival documents in French (a language which he does not read, but which I do), namely 166 pages' worth. He wants me to go through them and see to what extent they address certain topics/events. What do you think an appropriate fee for this would be? (If I were to do actual translating, I have a per-word fee that I have used in the past.) I have a PhD in European History but am currently "between jobs" at the moment.
posted by dhens on May 31, 2016 - 6 answers

Did Samson's riddle rhyme in the original?

If you're an average Joe you probably know Samson's riddle (Judges 14:14) as: "Out of the eater, something to eat. Out of the strong, something sweet." or something like that. Most English translations rhyme the [eat/meat] with [sweet]. But what about the original? [more inside]
posted by komara on May 31, 2016 - 6 answers

Hope me blog

I am starting a personal translation project. I plan to translate a few paragraphs a day from Italian into English from a classic work of Italian literature that is mostly unknown to English speaking audiences. It kind of makes sense for me to share this online for kicks and giggles and motivation. What's the best platform for me to use, given the format and subject matter?
posted by bq on May 23, 2016 - 5 answers

Which alphabet is this?

Two of my friends sent a card that they picked out at our local bodega for my birthday. We had a great laugh and now we're obsessed with figuring out the message. But we can't decipher the alphabet! Help? [more inside]
posted by jeanmari on Apr 11, 2016 - 6 answers

How much am I worth as a translator?

I'm having a tough time working out what would be an appropriate and fair rate for a translation, given my qualifications. In the past, I've done occasional work for online translation agencies as well as some more large-scale translations (everything from memoirs to legal documents). In those cases, it was either the agency or client which suggested a rate under project specific circumstances (time-sensitive, for a non-profit with limited budget, etc.). Could any of you give me some guidelines or suggestions? [more inside]
posted by csjc on Apr 4, 2016 - 3 answers

I can't read Chinese: where are these adorable tiny clay figurines from?

Got a set of twelve very tiny, hand-painted Chinese clay figurines at a thrift store. Only word on the box in English says "Minjianniren". Am tearing my hair out trying to figure out where these came from. Can you make out this faded Chinese text inside the box? Or do you recognize these things? (Pics inside.) [more inside]
posted by sarling on Mar 26, 2016 - 3 answers

Can anyone help me translate a warning sign into Spanish?

I have some flowers I would like to keep the gardeners from cutting, and so far telling them in person hasn't worked consistently, either because of language or turnover. I'd like to put up some signs near them in English and Spanish to make it clearer. So can anyone translate: "These [I plan to insert a picture or two] are flowers, please do not cut them back or spray weedkiller on them." If someone wants to be fancy and give translations of "heritage four o'clocks' and 'heartleaf ice plant' that I can put in for 'flowers', that would be keen, but flowers is fine. [more inside]
posted by tavella on Mar 19, 2016 - 10 answers

How to say "How goodly is our portion, how pleasant our lot" in Hebrew?

I want to translate the phrase "How goodly is our portion, how pleasant our lot" in Hebrew. It's possible that the original phrase was in Hebrew, since it shows up a lot in Jewish liturgical writing. I want something as close to the original as possible.
posted by stinker on Feb 24, 2016 - 3 answers

Interpreting (translation) in the UK

I've been a freelance Spanish interpreter & translator for a few years now in the U.S., and I've managed to create a sort-of stable lifestyle out of it, alongside another part-time job. I will be moving to the U.K. in a few months with my partner, however, and I need to start looking into the prospects across the pond. [more inside]
posted by parkbench on Feb 13, 2016 - 6 answers

Good French books that HAVEN'T been translated.

I'm looking for recommendations for French books by diaspora/PoC authors who have NOT been translated into English. Snowflakes inside. [more inside]
posted by Tamanna on Feb 6, 2016 - 9 answers

What is the best way of getting a 1 minute voicemail translated?

Recently I got a peculiar voicemail that was entirely in Spanish or Italian, about a minute long. The woman sounds very serious, and I'm intensely curious about what it says. Once I've converted it to MP3, what's the best way of getting it translated?
posted by daysocks on Jan 27, 2016 - 7 answers

While the people who translate to Latin are around . .

My friend and I have a particular history and we want to get a buddy tattoo. Naturally I'm going to ask you to verify a translation. [more inside]
posted by Medieval Maven on Jan 21, 2016 - 6 answers

To be a cider drinker, in Swedish

I'm looking for a good Swedish expression for "Get some cider in you!" or "Drink up your cider!" Something that sounds a little on the rural / folksy side would be best.
posted by Wolfdog on Jan 17, 2016 - 6 answers

English to Korean with no weird google translate faux pas

Can someone who speaks Korean help me translate a short statement to English pronunciation, hopefully resulting in smiles and good feelings for all? [more inside]
posted by shortyJBot on Jan 15, 2016 - 8 answers

"Give yourself the chance to get lucky."

Translate this phrase into as many languages as possible: "Give yourself the chance to get lucky." This was essentially my favorite uncle's personal motto, and I'd like to make something special with the translations. More context inside. [more inside]
posted by Cool Papa Bell on Jan 11, 2016 - 13 answers

Urdu-English Translation Help

Google Translate and other online services are failing me. How would you translate this from Urdu to English? [more inside]
posted by *s on Jan 6, 2016 - 4 answers

Best edition of the Tao Te Ching

What is the best translation/edition of the Tao Te Ching that includes both a good English translation and the original Chinese? [more inside]
posted by naoko on Dec 8, 2015 - 10 answers

Too bad I can't just ask Siri...

Research on voice recognition software as a translation tool: is there any? [more inside]
posted by Tamanna on Nov 27, 2015 - 8 answers

Help me translate / interpret this astrology chart (in Japanese)

I'm starting to study a life-cycle science called Sanmeigaku (Japanese Astrology). I'm slowly translating a book about it with a friend but we found out this table and we're stumped. It seems to be important to determine the correct meaning of the readings. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
posted by Matrod on Nov 18, 2015 - 3 answers

German phrase

When Rilke says, "Vielleicht, daß ich durch schwere Berge gehe / in harten Adern, wie ein Erz allein," does his last phrase mean "like an ore [moves], alone" or "alone like an ore" or "like only an ore [can move]"? Translators seem to all assume the first.
posted by kalapierson on Nov 11, 2015 - 12 answers

How would one say "slutty angels" in Latin?

A friend is hosting a horror movie night this Friday, and even though it's an otherwise Halloween-themed get-together, the invitation specified "Don't wear your slutty angel costume; this is not that kind of party." So my partner and I have decided we need to wear wings and get t-shirts made that say something approximating "slutty angels" in Latin. (Or "wanton" or "lascivious" or whatever is actually translatable.) I'd like it to be at least nominally grammatical. Help?
posted by psoas on Oct 25, 2015 - 7 answers

small Japanese translation

If you can read Japanese, please let us know what these pants say. thanks!
posted by Jason and Laszlo on Oct 15, 2015 - 10 answers


I have, by happenstance, come into possession of a small statue of a samurai that came with a little wooden sign with some Japanese writing on it. I'm sure one of you can easily translate it for me, and for that I would be grateful.
posted by prize bull octorok on Oct 8, 2015 - 1 answer

What are these Germans saying?

By no means do I need a word-for-word translation or anything, but what is generally going on in this video? That is, what is the gist of what the introducer is saying, and when Pit Hartling comes on stage, what is he explaining about the Rubik's Cube before he does the flourish at the end? What, indeed, is this event? Thanks for your help, German speakers!
posted by sappidus on Oct 4, 2015 - 4 answers

Ancient Greek Inscription help needed

We are painting a 40-foot mural for a children's swimming pool. It will (sort of inevitably) include Atlantis themes, and we want to include a little joke in the form of an Ancient Greek inscription that says something like "always blow your bubbles" (something the instructors are always telling the little kids as part of their swimming instruction). Can you help translate this into the correct glyphs? Would be nice if it could avoid being translatable as "never stop farting" but one cannot have everything, I know ;)
posted by aesop on Sep 20, 2015 - 2 answers

Why use a sentence instead of "anónimamente"?

On New York City building sites, why does the Spanish signage say "No tiene que dar su nombre" instead of using the Spanish adverb for "anonymously"? [more inside]
posted by brainwane on Sep 17, 2015 - 22 answers

Universal English

Is there any sort of dictionary or text corpora that outline which of a number of synonyms are the most universally understood by other language speakers or the least colloquial? [more inside]
posted by Iteki on Sep 14, 2015 - 6 answers

How to approach translating a company's website from English to Spanish

My company is investigating translating a web site we work on into Spanish, and might even be looking into getting messages from website users translated from Spanish into English (and vice versa). We are large enough to have a real budget to do this professionally, but no one has done this before so we’re not sure where to start and what our options are. Talk me through the steps I should take to start investigating this. [more inside]
posted by Tehhund on Sep 8, 2015 - 13 answers

IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) to Audio Website?

Is there a website where you can paste in something spelled in International Phonetic Alphabet script (usually surrounded by forward slashes) and hear the audio pronunciation? [more inside]
posted by WCityMike on Aug 22, 2015 - 1 answer

How does Metacritic translate foreign language reviews?

Who translates the blurbs that show up in the Metacritic review summaries? [more inside]
posted by pravit on Aug 11, 2015 - 0 answers

Turkish Hip-Hop Translation: Roadside Picnic

I recently interviewed a Turkish band who introduced me to the group 'Roadside Picnic', who make fantastic, alluring left-field hip-hop. I've been hopelessly hooked on this live version of what I presume is a new song from the duo. It's titled "Bir Ustamızın Havası", and I'd love to know what the song is talking about. [more inside]
posted by beijingbrown on Jul 28, 2015 - 0 answers

Help translating a flyer from English to Portuguese

I have volunteered to help out with a thing, and now I have a (short) bit of text that I am hoping someone can translate from English into Portuguese for me. [more inside]
posted by janepanic on Jul 28, 2015 - 3 answers

Translation of Hebrew Signage on Small Building

There is this odd little building in my neighborhood and I would really like to know what the sign on it says and what it could possibly be used for. I saw it being built over the past year, but I have no clue what it is. Here is the building and this is the sign on front.
posted by Julnyes on Jul 21, 2015 - 5 answers

Ég tala ekki íslensku. How do you say "subtitles" in Icelandic?

I... well you see... okay, can we just accept that I have a reason for asking this? I don't speak Icelandic (I even have a t-shirt to attest to that fact). Google Translate is ambivalent, suggesting either "texti" or "Undirtitill" or just throwing up its hands depending on how I phrase it. Are you from Iceland? What do you call the words on the bottom of the screen that translate what a character is saying? Kattullus, are you out there?
posted by Naberius on Jul 17, 2015 - 3 answers

Latin Translation

Need help translating a phrase into Latin - "Efficiency in all things." Google Translate says it's "efficiendum est omnia" but I don't trust it 100% and want to avoid ending up with the Latin equivalent of "Macho Business Donkey Wrestler" as a motto.
posted by robocop is bleeding on Jul 13, 2015 - 13 answers

How do you edit foreign-language dialogue in a documentary?

I'm working on a documentary project where much of the dialogue is in Bengali and we plan to subtitle it in English. We have transcripts of everything but the editing process is still challenging: we don't know exactly how to cut the clips we need so that the dialogue still makes sense in the native language (respecting grammatical structure, etc.) Is there a standard way this is done? [more inside]
posted by goingonit on Jul 8, 2015 - 3 answers

Can someone translate this Chinese text for me?

One of my ELL students wrote this in my yearbook and I don't know what it says-- it's probably not overly exciting but I would like to know what she wrote. [more inside]
posted by sadtomato on Jun 21, 2015 - 4 answers

Murakami, Translation, and Descriptions of Food?

Would the Japanese text of a Murakami novel bother elaborating that oyakodon is "rice topped with chicken and eggs" - or is that bit of text added by the translator for the benefit of foreign-language (English, in this case) readers? [more inside]
posted by unmake on Jun 20, 2015 - 6 answers

Hindi translation mystery

I'm trying to figure out the proper Hindi translation for "courage, dear heart". Google Translate gives me a few options, depending on whether I capitalize, add commas, etc, etc, and I'm trying to figure out the difference between them so I can figure out which is correct. I'd really like to get it right! Translations below the break: [more inside]
posted by anoncanuck on Jun 15, 2015 - 30 answers

My first ink: please don't let Google Translate muck it up.

In a week or so, I'm getting my first tat, and I'm seeking proficient Thai speakers to help me avoid an unfortunate 'choice.' Yep, that's the word in question. [more inside]
posted by moonbird on Jun 1, 2015 - 2 answers

Where can I find a phone or in person interpreter for Hakka Chinese?

I'm looking for someone to help me communicate with my Chinese grandmother who only speaks Hakka, a dialect spoken in her village in Hong Kong. Is there somewhere I could find someone to help me interpret over the phone? We are in Sydney Australia, but would be happy for help from anywhere. [more inside]
posted by strekker on May 24, 2015 - 5 answers

Document translation Services for the Green Card process.

Does anybody on the green know of an individual or company that can translate documents from Spanish to English for green card immigration purposes. The form states that "a full English translation that the translator has certified is correct, and by the translators certification that they are comptent to translate foreign language into English" is needed. Nothing specific on what certification.
posted by Coffee Bean on May 19, 2015 - 7 answers

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