A lot of translations are done side-by-side, such as the following example:

 In principio creavit Deus   In the beginning, God created  
 caelum et terram            the heaven and the Earth

Is there a special name for when the translation is arranged like this, i.e. a _ translation? I seem to recall there being a special name for this, but I can't recall it.

4 Answers 4


I believe that the word you're looking for is parallel translation.

  • 2
    Or "parallel text".
    – Colin Fine
    May 24, 2011 at 16:47
  • 1
    The example is called a "Parallel Bible", too.
    – JeffSahol
    May 24, 2011 at 17:40

Another term, polyglot edition, refers to books published in a form where the original language is printed on left-hand pages, the translated text on right-hand facing pages. You can view a sample of such a text here.


A word-for-word translation under the original text is known as an interlinear translation.

John 1v1, from the Kingdom Interlinear

John 20v28, from the Kingdom Interlinear

  • This provides a similar experience (of having a translation very close to the original) but is not the same as side-by-side. The latter has the translation in a separate column on the same page or an entire facing page in translation, which is what the OP is looking for. Interlinear translation goes one line in the original language and the next line is that same line translated into the target language.
    – Mitch
    Jul 15, 2011 at 14:52

A more general term: synoptic translation (example). But just as polyglot this doesn't specify the layout. The layout could be side-by-side (left/right page or parallel columns), interlinear, ruby etc. The layout for The Raven's example isn't side-by-side btw, it's interlinear.


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