Wednesday, September 21, 2011
One of the easiest ways to make a translation into a language like Mondial with a given set of source languages is to find a site that shows the same text in multiple languages. For the Bible this is easy: this site will list up to nine translations side by side, and that helps immensely with a language that still has only 7000 words. For this sample I couldn't immediately find a good word for the French "la terre subsiste toujours" but luckily the Latin version I called up as well has "in aeternum stat" - ah, so let's just go with "sta in eternitá", problem solved.
For multiple versions of the Qur'an you'll want to go to this site, and sometimes you will also find non-religious books like The Little Prince that have been translated into multiple languages. Neither a biblical nor a quranic translation would be faithful to the original, but for a quick and easy translation just for the sake of being able to say that Language X has so-and-so books of the Bible this is a really easy way to do it.
The most difficult part would actually be names of people and countries. Here too though it can be easy to just go with the standard another language has used (maybe French or Italian) and mostly copy that, taking out accents and doubled consonants and so on.
The quick sample of a few verses of Ecclesiastes:
Paroles de Qohelet, filio de David, rege in Jerusalem:
Vanitá de vanitás, dica Qohelet; vanitá de vanitás, tuto e vanitá.
Quel profite ha le hom de su tote pena que il fa so le sole?
Un generacion anda, un altre vena, ma le tera sta in eternitá.
Le sole leva se, le sole cucha se, il hasta se al loco u il nasca de novel.
Le vente directa se al midi, turna al norde; poi il turna ancor, i returna se al mem circulacion.
This weekend I plan to reread the grammar and internalize it some more.