Featured Help with translation

Discussion in 'Translations' started by Lothor, Oct 8, 2018.

  1. Lothor

    Lothor Sempai
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    A friend asked me to proofread her English translation of a brief introduction to a Japanese website. Because neither of us have the ability to pick up the subtle nuances in the other's language, we're both struggling and would welcome some help.
    I'll post the original Japanese and what we've got so far in English below. If anyone can improve some of the sentences, we'd be very grateful.

    Here's the original Japanese

    私共は獅子陽道と申します
    獅子陽道-ししようどう-とは 
    <獅子>のように強く気高い生き様で
    <陽>の力を借りて陰を制す
    武士と舞志の<道>
    の意を込めて名付けられました

    四季折々の色を重ねゆく美しい国-日本-
    古き良き伝統文化や先人の教えを
    今後も後世に伝えて参ります

    独自の伝統文化を作って頂いた先人達へ
    現代の方々へ
    そして
    日本を愛してくださる皆様へ
    獅子陽道 
    花一輪  
    手向けの舞をさせて頂きます
    此の度は御覧頂き誠に有難う御座いました。

    and this is the English we have so far.

    Our group name “Shishiyodo獅子陽道” is named after two kinds of “Bushido,” the code of the samurai (武士道) and the way of dancing in the spirit of the samurai (舞志道).
    Shishiyodo獅子陽道 is a path (道) toward living strongly like lions (獅子) with noble aims, striving to overcome the negative through positive power (陽).
    Japan is a country with beautiful colors that change from season to season.
    Our group, Shishiyodo, aim to foster and pass on Japan’s good traditions and our ancestor’s wisdom to the next generation.
    To our ancestors who cultivated our traditional culture,
    To people living today,
    To anyone who loves Japan,
    Shishiyodo presents a floral offering through dance.
    Thank you very much for visiting our website.

    Any suggestions/improvements very gratefully received.
     
  2. joadbres

    joadbres Sempai

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    #2 joadbres, Oct 8, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
    The Japanese text opens with a statement along the lines of "We are Shishiyodo." Your translation eliminates this. I recommend keeping it. (You can play with the wording to make it sound better...)

    The Japanese text explains that the two types of bushido contribute the 道 part of the name, but the way you wrote it makes it sound like the entire group name derives from that. It is better to explain the elements of the name piece by piece in the same order as was done in the Japanese text.

    In the middle 3-line section of the Japanese text, it is not clear to me who is the subject. It might be Japan itself. You assume it to be the Shishiyodo group, but that might not be the case. I recommend double-checking this with a native speaker.

    Edit: when I write "you", of course I mean you and your friend together.
     
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  3. Lothor

    Lothor Sempai
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    joadbres - thanks very much for the helpful suggestions. I'll see if I get any other comments then have a go at rewriting the parts suggested.
     
  4. Toritoribe

    Toritoribe 禁漁期
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    As for the middle three lines, the original interpretation is correct. The first line is a single sentence, and the subject of the rest two lines is the group, not Japan.
     
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  5. joadbres

    joadbres Sempai

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    Sorry for the red herring regarding the middle lines. Now that I re-read it, it is much clearer...

    There are some sloppy English grammatical mistakes that need cleaning up, such as "our group ... aim" instead of "our group ... aims", and "ancestor's wisdom" instead of "ancestors' wisdom". The whole thing is in need of a polish once the big-ticket issues are fixed.

    Also "thank you very much for visiting our website" is a little mundane when compared to the rest of the text. I recommend giving it a slightly poetic polish to better match the tone of the original Japanese.
     
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  6. kikyo

    kikyo Registered

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    Than you very much for the helpful comments.
    I am the one who asked Lother to check English.
    Now I rewrote the text following the advice.
    If any of you could give me any frank comments reading the English text below, it would be greatly appreciated.

    ———
    We are the group named Shishiyodo.
    The name expresses what we aspire to follow:
    Like lions (獅子) that live strongly with noble aims,
    we can overcome the negative through positive power (陽).
    And that is a path (道),
    which we devote our life to the pursuit of our faith in two kinds of “Bushido,”
    the code of samurai (武士道)
    and the way of dancing in the same spirit as samurai (舞志道).

    We are from Japan,where it has
    beautiful colors that change from season to season. 

    Our group, Shishiyodo, has a mission
    to foster this country’s good traditions and our ancestors’ wisdom
    and to pass those on to the next generation.


    For our ancestors who cultivated our culture,

    for people living today,

    for anyone who loves Japan,
    we now perform our dance
    with the good tradition and the wisdom
    in order to get close to the heart of people living today when their life is good or bad,
    believing that it shall also mean to repose the soul of the decease.
    ———
     
  7. joadbres

    joadbres Sempai

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    The final lines of the revised English version do not appear in the Japanese text you provided, so it is difficult to judge the quality of the translation. "when their life is good or bad" should probably be changed to something like "both in good times and in bad". In the final line, "soul of the decease" should probably be "souls of the deceased".

    As it is written now, the text is difficult for a native English speaker to follow. You should have a native speaker provide a polish / revision to the entire text.
     
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  8. kikyo

    kikyo Registered

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    Thank you very much joadbres.
    I am now thinking that i will have to find a professional polishing service.
    Allow me to post the text here one last time.
    Just wanted to make sure that it still makes no sense to the English native speakers.

    ---
    Our group is named Shishiyodo 獅子陽道.
    Let us introduce the group’s name.

    Shishi (獅子, “lions”) Yo (陽, “positive”):
    Like lions that live strongly with noble aims, we focus on the positive side even when we encounter difficulties.
    Do (道, “path”):
    We devote ourselves to two “Bushido.” One is the code of samurai (武士道) , and the other is the way of dancing in the same spirit as samurai (舞志道).

    Japan still has beautiful colors that change from season to season. However, some of the very good traditions are to become extinct, too. Our group, Shishiyodo, has missions to foster such good traditions and our ancestors’ wisdom and to pass those on to the next generation.

    We now perform our dance so that the good traditions and wisdom will find a way to carry on.
    With the gratitude to our ancestors who cultivated our culture, we hope to get close to people living today both in good times and in bad.
    In our belief and prayer, such performances shall mean offering to the deceased ones’ spirits at the same time.
     
  9. joadbres

    joadbres Sempai

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    It's much better now!

    You are close to finished, so don't need to hire a translator, I think.

    A few suggestions:

    change 'introduce' to 'explain'

    change 'are to become extinct' to 'sometimes become extinct'

    change 'Our group, Shishiyodo, has missions' to 'Our group's mission is'

    After that, a light polish is still needed. Maybe you can post it on a language exchange board such as HelloTalk, and get some free help.
     
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