How did The Simpsons translate 'cromulent' in other countries?
February 27, 2020 4:39 PM   Subscribe

I'm wondering how The Simpsons translated "cromulent" for other languages. Did they just leave it as 'cromulent'? Or did they replace it with some equally plausible but totally gibberish collection of syllables more attuned to local ears? How about "embiggens"?
posted by some little punk in a rocket to Writing & Language (4 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
From Reddit, someone says cromulent is translated by the perfectly cromulent French word adéquat.

The problem with not translating cromulent is that its adequadequacity is dependent on how other words sound in English, so the same words won’t sound ‘almost right’ in Spanish or German, etc. The redditor above suggests that engrandit is a good translation of ‘embiggen’ that is used to sound like a real word, but isn’t/wasn’t yet.
posted by SaltySalticid at 5:13 PM on February 27, 2020 [7 favorites]

Not answering your question but "malk" became "lache" in Spanish and it's basically perfect
posted by pullayup at 5:55 PM on February 27, 2020 [11 favorites]

According to this page (and confirmed by a few others), in Spanish they went with:

“Un noble espíritu agrandece al hombre más pequeño”.


“no sé por qué. Es una palabra perfectamente cromulent”.

I found this by finding out what the episode was titled in Spanish ("Lisa la inconoclasta") and including it in a Google search with a couple of other words in Spanish I happen to know. Unfortunately Spanish is my only non-English language so this is about as far as I can get.
posted by Ufez Jones at 6:01 PM on February 27, 2020 [3 favorites]

Best answer: According to the Disney subtitles:
Dutch: cromulent (embiggens -> 'vergrotert')
Danish: kromulent (storgør)
French: décentissime (engrandit)
German: gutiges (vergrandet)
Italian: urbania (ingiganta)

But: I've also noticed that at least in some of those languages, other words are used in the dubbed versions. My knowledge of those languages is not good enough to determine what they are though. For those trying to figure it out: it starts at about 01:30 in S07E16.
posted by Ms. Next at 1:36 AM on February 28, 2020 [6 favorites]

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