Czech lines
October 12, 2013 1:06 PM   Subscribe

Czech speakers: are these 3 lines sensible to you? (They don't have to be perfect or poetic; I just wanted to make sure they're understandable.) They're google's Czech translation of an ancient Latin text.

Neporazitelný slunce! Sun, jehož čas je pozorovat, záležitosti pěstování a sklizeň.

Na slunci ještě jednou pohled: nikde se jeho jas šedě.

Nebe upevněny to tam, ale je rozptýlena po všech krajinách; přítomná všude stejně a je smíchán se všemi věcmi.
posted by kalapierson to Writing & Language (5 answers total)
Okay, I was waiting to see if any actual Czech speakers came along to help, but since no one has yet, I'll offer you this.

Did you Google Translate the Latin directly to Czech? If so, the chances that what you have there is comprehensible in the slightest are basically nonexistent. Google Translate can*not* handle Latin, at all. It does not give you the "gist" of it with some minor infelicities like it might for some modern languages; it produces *nonsense*.

If you did something else, like first translate the Latin yourself to English and *then* ask for Google to translate it to Czech, that's a different question and you'll need a Czech speaker to check (ha) it. But if you don't know Latin, post your text here, and I or someone else will help you with that, and then you can gtranslate into (probably not great and possibly incomprehensible -- machine translation just isn't very good!) Czech from that.

But I promise you (as I do all my students, who quickly learn that I am telling them the truth), Google Translate cannot do Latin.
posted by lysimache at 8:11 AM on October 13, 2013

You might have better luck on r/translation or any popular language forum. Maybe try to find an English translation of your text, it will make it easier for Czech speakers to translate it for you.

And I agree with lysimache. Google translate is pretty bad, but a bit better if you use English as your source language, since it always uses English as an intermediary.
posted by Fillus at 8:46 AM on October 13, 2013

Mr. Brambory, Czech native speaker, says it makes absolutely no sense. He also said that if he were very drunk and in a strange mood, it might be somewhat understandable and poetic, but only in a Dada-esque way.
posted by brambory at 11:41 AM on October 13, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thank you all - I'm not surprised and I appreciate the confirmation.

lysimache, this is the known-good English translation and what google does with that in Czech:

Invincible sun! Sun, from which time is observed, when any seed is planted or harvested.

Always look back to the sun: its light is inviolate.

It is fixed in the sky, yet it shines equally over all lands; present everywhere, it is connected with all things.


Invincible slunce! Sun, ze kterého je pozorován čas, když je nějaký semena zasadil ani sklizeno.

Vždy se podívejte zpět na slunce?: jeho světlo je nedotknutelná.

Je pevně na obloze, ale to svítí stejně na všechny země; všudypřítomný, je spojen se všemi věcmi.
posted by kalapierson at 7:58 AM on October 14, 2013

Response by poster: For anybody who sees this question now, please just look at this version (manually done by simplifying the English and using multiple translation sites):

Neporazitelný slunce!

Pozorujeme času od slunce,
Když jsme zasadit semínko, když jsme sklizeň.

Vždy se podívejte na slunce:
neporazitelný světlo.

Slunce zůstane na obloze,
ale to svítí přes všechny země;
Je všude,
je spojena se všemi věci.

posted by kalapierson at 5:30 AM on October 16, 2013

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