Mistranslations - Urinate in a Civilized Manner

Fresh Air Can Indeed Be Experienced if People Only Urinate in a Civilized Manner

The Chinese language has many intricacies that can be attributed to the many dialects the Chinese have. Most language specialists only recognize the seven dialects, which are widely known. However there are many other variations that exist in smaller towns. All these dialects vary distinctly from one another. Moreover translators would need an in-depth grasp of the dialect to be able to make an accurate translation.

One problem that came up with this translation was the direct translation of each Chinese word into its direct equivalent in English. As the written Chinese word makes the use of characters, each character carries its own meaning. Once this character is combined with another character, both characters can have a totally different meaning. So one character can actually carry more than one meaning. This leads to problems with translation, as the translator would need to understand the connotation of the characters and the premise of how the character was being used in a sentence.

This particular translation did not make sense as the translator did a direct translation of each character into English without taking into consideration the context of the entire Chinese phrase. As each character has its own meaning, these meanings were extracted individually and were pieced together to form a sentence, albeit incoherent. Moreover as the sentence structure in the Chinese language is different, the outcome of the translation was a rather awkward translation.

In the English language, the tense of the verb would be an indication of when the event took place. However in the Chinese language, the time of the event would be described by adverbs. What the translator should have done was to understand the context of the Chinese phrase and the etymology of the words before coming out with the sentence in English.

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