Determining English equivalents for words or phrases in other languages (that is, translation into English)

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2
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1answer
256 views

Equivalence at word level [closed]

Is there a one-to-one relationship between word and meaning?
3
votes
1answer
797 views

American English equivalent of “revise” (as in studying)

Today, I discovered that the meaning of revise to do with studying is used in British, Australian and New Zealand English, rather than American English: (UK, Australia, New Zealand) To look over ...
0
votes
6answers
330 views

Is there an English idiom equivalent to “coup de main”

I am looking for a translation of the French military term coup de main. (Not the common French civilian usage which translates as helping hand.) The term occurs frequently in the correspondence ...
3
votes
4answers
245 views

Phrase that means “gaining money for someone” in a negative context

In German, we have a phrase "jmd. in die Tasche spielen", literally "to play into someone's pockets". I am looking for a fitting English equivalent. The phrase means, you are causing a third party ...
1
vote
1answer
179 views

How should this sentence be interpreted?

So I am reading the essay "On Some Verses of Virgil" by Michel de Montaigne (translation by Donald M. Frame) and I came across this particular sentence. Is there any ugliness in doing wrong that ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

How would you call a word that doesn't exist or translate well into another language?

I've run into this situation several times, being a native Spanish speaker. There are some words you just can't translate into another language. Is there a particular word to describe this? I'm not ...
1
vote
2answers
153 views

The opposite of close set (eyes)

What's the opposite of close set eyes? wide set eyes? far set eyes? :D I heard this in the TV show Grimm. I got curious what would be the opposite
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Translation for “btw verlegd” (NL) for EU business - meaning VAT moved?

For our website I need a translation for the expression "BTW verlegd" (Nederlands / Dutch). When a company (seller) in the EU sells something to a foreign EU company (foreign buyer), the VAT can be ...
1
vote
1answer
109 views

Why we are not translating western institustion names?

I saw this in many places but want to ask my question in a specific example. In Wikipedia article on European Central Bank there is a section Preceded by 17 national banks National Bank of Austria ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

Is “plastic glass” as a container a valid expression?

In another question here (sanity of a plastic glass!) the term "plastic glass" is being used which sounds somewhat odd to me, but has not been brought into question by any respondents. Maybe it is ...
0
votes
2answers
108 views

Apply to a university to study/for studying..?

I'm writing my CV and do not know how to correctly say that: * After I graduated from X (//X is a high school), I applied to a university to study chemistry and also computer systems. * I'm ...
1
vote
1answer
261 views

How do you say 'cooked pig small intestine filled with pig blood' in English?

In our culture, we usually serve cooked pig small intestine filled with pig blood in times of feast. Is there a single English word for this? In our language, it's Sa-thithun.
0
votes
2answers
269 views

Emphasis is put on relation of A and B, instead of/on

Having the following sentence, I'm not sure how to use prepositions after 'instead': The emphasis is put on the relation between A and B, instead of on A and B themselves. Is "instead of on" ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

How to say “along the way” when I mean it literally?

I wanted to help a foreigner looking for his guide. I said: Go towards the church, you will meet your guide along the way. I meant that he would meet him while going towards the church. What should ...
2
votes
6answers
134 views

The word for “professional system” or “task system”

I work with software engineering and in norwegian (I'm from Norway) we have a word, "fagsystem", which refers to a software system/application that is specialized to handle a certain kind of business ...
1
vote
2answers
413 views

Converting a sentence to passive with “would”

I know how passive voice is created in general: He is rich => He is said to be rich. People say that he's not able to win => He's said not to be able to win. There is a sentence: He ...
0
votes
2answers
568 views

Opportunity vs chance?

As a non-native English speaker, I wonder what the difference is between the following sentences: It's a chance to work with you. It's an opportunity to work with you. I ask this question, because ...
5
votes
7answers
332 views

What is an English word which means 'bêtement'?

Bêtement is a French word whose literal meaning is 'in the manner of an animal'. It is often used metaphorically, to describe an action carried out in a robotic fashion – without thinking. How would ...
1
vote
2answers
688 views

Translation of foreign company names and abbreviations [closed]

How do I deal with translation of names of foreign organisations or company names and their abbreviations? I have an example where I want to refer to the Swedish television company SVT, which is an ...
3
votes
4answers
608 views

How can I translate “Jeitinho Brasileiro” into English?

Jeitinho Brasileiro can be literally translated to "Brazilian way to do things"! Wikipedia has an article about it. There are various meaning to this expression and one gives the idea of ...
3
votes
3answers
220 views

A correct English expression for heavy and aching head

There is a Russian expression referring to the feeling of heaviness and pain in the head that translates literally as "head is buzzing" or "head is humming" (голова гудит). Is there any similar ...
0
votes
1answer
261 views

I was able to re-introduce the process that had not been done anymore. Past perfect?

I am not sure whether or not there should be past simple or past perfect: I was able to re-introduce the procedure that had not been being followed anymore. I was able to re-introduce the ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Is there an equivalent for French “CQFD”

In French, when concluding a demonstration, we say "CQFD", which stands for "Ce Qu'il Fallait Démontrer". Do English has an equivalent for this ?
2
votes
1answer
119 views

The instrument that measures the consumption of water

What is the English name of this instrument, that measures the consumption of water? In Hebrew we call it "Sheon Mayim" (literally: "water clock"), but in English, water clock is a clock for ...
3
votes
3answers
300 views

deity / divinity / god

I'm translating some Buddhist texts to English and I'm wondering if there are any subtle differences in usage between the words deity, divinity, and god (in the lower case sense)? What is the word ...
0
votes
2answers
231 views

Past perfect/simple question in an example

Talking about the trip I did a few years ago: I have been there and it was amazing. I had not seen a frozen sea until that time! Did I use past perfect correctly or should I just say "I did not ...
0
votes
1answer
269 views

Future perfect or simple in this context

In a movie I saw, a young boy told to an old man that he would be gone for a long time when something happens. I'm trying to figure out what the boy actually said and what tense should have been used ...
2
votes
5answers
10k views

English equivalent of the French custom “l'apéro”

In France, when gathered with friends, it is customary to drink beers or other light alcohol around 7pm, and this time is called apéritif (or apéro). Does this custom have an English (UK and/or US) ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there such a word as “lightweightness”?

Is there a good translation for the German word "Leichtgewichtigkeit" (lit. "lightweightness")? According to leo.org and dict.cc, there is none, but according to these translations, there are ...
1
vote
2answers
182 views

Forms of strict reporting — what do Americans call them?

I had to deal with typographically printed sheets with some generic text and fields to fill in information by hand (dates, signatures etc.) or through printing (if you are lucky to hit the fields). ...
6
votes
9answers
3k views

The meaning of “blue canoe” in the lyrics of “Where to Now, St. Peter” sung by Elton John

In his song Where to Now, St. Peter, Sir Elton John sings: I took myself a blue canoe, And I floated like a leaf Dazzling, dancing half enchanted In my Merlin sleep. Crazy was the ...
1
vote
1answer
122 views

“heart advice” - jarring or beautiful?

I'm translating a Tibetan text written in verse into English. The style is one of direct advice rather than learned philosophy. My aim is for the translation to have the same down-to-earth quality as ...
3
votes
3answers
413 views

Does “alter” means “change into something worse”?

In French, the verb altérer means change into something worse or degrade. As a non-native English speaker I wonder whether the English verb alter has necessarily this negative meaning or in the ...
1
vote
5answers
333 views

English equivalent of Greek saying

My Greek friend has told me a Greek saying, which roughly translates to: The thief screams to frighten the landlord Effectively it means: You are only making a fuss so that nobody accuses you, ...
5
votes
5answers
248 views

Translation of « débrayable » for camera modes and automatic software processing

I am French and I am looking for how to express the concept of the French word débrayable: Something débrayable is able to be manually configured as opposed of something which is always automatically ...
5
votes
6answers
611 views

Do we have an equivalent for Persian's proverb “to stretch one's leg more than one's rug”?

In Persian we have this proverb which translated literally becomes: To stretch one's leg more than one's rug which means that you go beyond the circle of your authorities, or the circle of your ...
3
votes
3answers
92 views

Does the term “Postal Authority” Make sense?

I have received a parcel today, from Israel, and the box is branded "Israel Postal Authority". In Hebrew the same body has the word "Reshut" in its name, a term I believe originated from the Hebrew ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

What's the difference between maintenance, upkeep & sustenance [closed]

Question: I was translating the term Wartung, Instandhaltung und Unterhalt in our software. I came up with Maintenance, Upkeep & Sustenance And I was just thinking. Is somebody actually ...
0
votes
2answers
178 views

If we use “fairy” in our band name, will people think of sprites or gay men?

Seems like a really weird question but here's what it's about: Me and my band are currently searching for a bandname which seems to be very hard. We recently (finally) found one name that we all ...
-2
votes
1answer
104 views

I read the dictionary as if it were a novel [closed]

In my mother tongue, we have an expression that I have translated to I read the dictionary as if it were a novel. I think the meaning is easy to grasp by I wonder if there a more suitable ...
82
votes
12answers
5k views

Is there English counterpart(s) to Japanese old saying, “Present salt to your enemy.”?

We have a popular Japanese saying, “敵に塩を送る” — literally, “present (supply) salt to one's enemy”, meaning ‘play fair and square, not taking advantage of the weak point of your rival.’ It’s different ...
1
vote
1answer
120 views

“The” before person name and context indication

I'm a native French speaker and the following is translated from French: A production still in which the beauty of the natural elements and colours evoke the Renoir of A Day in the Country (1936) ...
-1
votes
3answers
193 views
1
vote
3answers
81 views

Party organized by the students of a department

At German universities, there student councils, called "Fachshaft", which is an extracurricular representative structure for students. Each year (or semester), the student councils organize parties ...
0
votes
3answers
254 views

What phrase or word can I use to describe a bad mix of action?

This is in a Saudi YouTube series that I'm subtitling; I came across a colloquial word which means literally 'a mixture of melon juice, mango juice and corn', and figuratively expresses a bad course ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

Which one to use as general Personal Pronoun: he, she or it [duplicate]

The issue On my mother language, Portuguese, we have a lot of little differences to English on Pronouns. My question Which phrase is correct? Since I don't know if user is a man or a woman (or a ...
-2
votes
1answer
812 views

Ek kaan se suno aur dusre kaan se nikaal do in English proverb? [closed]

I know a Hindi proverb, but I would like to know translation of same in English. How will we say in form of proverb/idiom Not listening or paying attention to the words that come out of your ...
0
votes
1answer
164 views

Words like Schadenfreude or Sauerkraut [closed]

What are some composite German words such as "Schadenfreude" or "Sauerkraut" that are commonly used in English and with no English equivalents?
0
votes
1answer
299 views

How to say “he was waiting long time but not … (did not reach goal)”? [closed]

How to say "he was waiting long time but not ... (did not reach goal)"? I have problem with some translation I want express such expression that "someone" is waiting long but not finished it since ...
1
vote
10answers
639 views

Single word for “unqualified truth”

Suppose someone (let's call him Alex) is bad at playing soccer, but he does not want to hear that. Now if someone says to Alex in his face, "you are a really bad soccer player", what would be an apt ...