English translation will inevitably involve the choice of words, and there is a very close relationship between the choice of words and translation. It can be said that the success of a translation depends largely on whether the choice of words is appropriate. Business English translation should pay more attention to this problem, so let’s take a look at the matters needing attention in business English translation.
1. Pay more attention to common words and fall into the trap of common meaning
Commonly used words are easy for translators to look literal. If they don’t pay attention to them, they will fall into a trap and make ridiculous errors in the translation.
Often an individual must supply personal accounting information in order to buy a car or home, to qualify for a college scholarship, to secure a credit card, or to obtain a bank loan. Large corporations are accountable to their stockholders, to governmental agencies, and to the public.
Translation: Usually, in order to buy a car, buy a house, in order to obtain a university scholarship, apply for a credit card or obtain a bank loan, they must obtain their own financial information. Large companies have the responsibility to explain the company’s financial status to its shareholders, government agencies and the general public.
Analysis: The governmental agencies in this sentence are commonly used words. Whenever they see this phrase, many translators will immediately give the corresponding word “government agency”. On the surface, it seems reasonable and reasonable to translate this phrase into “government agency”, but in fact the English phrase does not mean this but “government agency”. For example: CIA (United States Central Intelligence Agency), Xinhua News Agency (Xinhua News Agency) and others all use the word agency to mean “organization.” Therefore, it is appropriate to translate: “large companies have the responsibility to their shareholders, government agencies…”. It can be seen that common words are easier for people to translate Somersault in the process.
2. Check the dictionary diligently and pay attention to multiple meanings
The characteristic of English vocabulary is that the meaning contained in it is often quite vacillant and flexible. This is mainly reflected in the fact that the meaning of English vocabulary changes according to their collocation and context. In English, a word is often a collection of multiple meanings, but in a specific context there is only one meaning. This meaning is derived from the context in which it is located or the collocation or combination of the word with other words. This is true in English literary language, and so is business English. Since English has such characteristics, when translating business English into Chinese, we must pay full attention to the polysemous phenomenon of English, check professional dictionaries diligently, and convey the true meaning of English. such as:
It is not surprising, then, that the world saw a return to a floating exchange rate system. Central banks were no longer required to support their own currencies. Floating policy is of great importance for export trade; it is, in fact, a convenient method of insuring goods where a number of similar export transactions are intended, eg where the insured has to supply an overseas importer under an exclusive sales agreement or maintains sales representatives or subsidiary companies abroad.
Translation: Under this circumstance, it is not surprising that countries around the world resume floating exchange rates. Central banks of various countries do not need to maintain the exchange rate of their currencies. The unified insurance policy is very important to export trade. It is actually a convenient method in cargo insurance. It is especially suitable for a batch of similar goods exported at different times. For example, when the insured party supplies goods to a foreign importer according to an exclusive agency agreement, or is abroad It is used when a sales representative is appointed to establish a branch.
Analysis: The meaning of floating in the above two sentences is completely different. Floating exchange rate means “floating exchange rate”, that is, an exchange rate system that can float freely and is completely determined by market forces. The floating policy refers to a continuous long-term insurance certificate used to underwrite multiple shipments. It is often translated as “universal insurance policy”. It can be seen that the same word has different meanings when it is paired with different words. Yes, different words should be used to express this different meaning when translated into Chinese.
3. Pay attention to the emotional color of the meaning of words
Sometimes, when choosing words in the translation, the emotional color of the meaning of the words must also be considered. At this time, the choice of words is not necessarily right or wrong, but there are differences in accuracy, properness, and pros and cons. The success or failure in this regard best reflects the true skill of a translator. Consider the following example:
A foreign business representative, neither overly sympathetic toward China nor overly disposed against it, would need to be convinced on a number of scores before he could responsibly commit his firm to taking an equity position in a Chinese enterprise.
Translation: An enterprise representative who has neither excessive favoritism nor excessive dislike towards China must consider many factors before investing on behalf of the company in China and forming an equal equity relationship with certain Chinese companies.
Analysis: Looking up the dictionary, sympathetic-words have meanings such as “sympathetic”, “cool solution”, “agreeable”, “harmonious”, “consensual”, but there is no such meaning as “favorable”. If you copy it in a dictionary, the translation will not be smooth. Therefore, when translating this sentence, you must fully consider the emotional color and weight of the meaning of the word, so that the meaning conveyed is both appropriate, authentic and appropriate. This requires the translator to work hard, take time to experience and think about it. Only in this way can we produce an amazing translation.
The underwriter realizes this and certainly does not set out to make life difficult for his agency colleagues. However, he has a job to do. Part of that job is to ensure that people who attempt to buy policies because they expect to”die” soon do not succeed in fooling him and his company. (Field Financial Understanding Guidelines, South East Asia, Swiss Re, p,5)
Translation: The underwriter recognizes this, and of course he will not cause problems for his deputy colleagues, but he has work to do, part of which is to ensure that those who are expected to “die” soon and try to buy real insurance policies People’s attempts to deceive themselves and the company cannot succeed. (“Life Insurance Financial Underwriting Guide”, (Southeast Region) Swiss Re)
Analysis: In English, the number of exclusive praise and derogatory words is much less than that in Chinese, and the praise and derogation of English words is mostly determined by the second text. In the process of translation, once it is established which words are commendatory in the context and which words are derogatory in the context, the corresponding words with commendatory and derogatory meanings should be used in the translation according to Chinese custom to express the true meaning of the neutral words in the original text. . In the original text of this example, the word “succeed” means gain a purpose or reach an aim, which is a neutral term. In Chinese, “to achieve success”, “to obtain results”, and “to reach the goal” are often used to correspond to it, but “achieve success” “, “Achieving results” are all compliments, and “reaching the goal” is a neutral meaning. However, if the term is used to indicate that someone does something with bad intentions, then the word “success” can no longer be used. Translating it into “to achieve the goal” is not clear enough, and the love and hate are not very clear, so in In this case, it is more appropriate to use matching derogatory words. The translation of do not succeed into “cannot succeed” is very much in line with this situation.
4. Carefully distinguish the style of words used
The language used in business English is generally more elegant, because in business interactions people are generally more polite, more formal, and often use language that does not have a very strong personal tendency.
The home of your dreams awaits you behind this door. Whether your taste be a country manor estate or a penthouse in the sky, you will find the following pages filled with the world’s most elegant residences.
Translation: Open the door, and you are waiting for your dream home. Whether you are looking forward to a country house or a skyscraper roof house, you can see the most elegant houses in the world for you to choose from when you open the following pages.
Analysis: The above is an advertisement. The await, be, manor, elegant, residence, etc. in the advertisement are all formal vocabulary, which replaces the colloquial wait, is, house, nice, place. The producer of the advertisement chose more elegant terms, of course, with deep intentions: on the one hand, it can highlight the noble quality of the product, and on the other hand, it satisfies the consumer’s mentality of paying attention to identity and pursuing superior quality. . The elegant terms of the original text are translated as “waiting”, “expecting”, “house” and “elegant residence” respectively, and correspond to the original text as far as possible in terms of style.
5. Pay attention to the adjustment of the expression, so that the translation conforms to the logic and actual situation
Assuming the laboratory tests go well, and you can quote us a competitive price, we’d certainly be able to place more substantial orders on a regular basis.
Translation: If the laboratory tests are qualified and your quotation is competitive, we will definitely order large quantities on a regular basis.
Analysis: The basic meaning of “go well” in the original text is “going well” and “no error”, but if Assuming the laboratory tests go well is translated into “if the laboratory tests go well” or “if the laboratory tests go well” The translation emphasizes the detection process. This is not very relevant to the content of the main sentence “We will definitely order large quantities of goods on a regular basis” below. Because the smoothness of the inspection process is not necessarily related to “our bulk orders”. The translator translates it as “If the laboratory test is qualified”, the focus is on the test result rather than the test process, which is in line with the actual situation. Therefore, when the selected text does not conform to the logic and actual situation, it is necessary to adjust the expression. Different ways of expression will bring different associations and results to people, and thus will produce different effects.
6. Pay attention to the conciseness of expression, so that the sentence is concise and expressive
Shipping details, including whether transshipments are allowed. Also recorded should be the latest date for shipment and the names of the ports of shipment and discharge. (It may be in the best interest of the exporter for shipment to be allowed “from any UK port “so that he has a choice if, for example, some ports are affected by strikes. The same applies
For the port of discharge.)
Translation: Shipment details: including whether to allow