Archive Page 2

29
Nov
10

Als Konig Abi-Esuh Gerechte Ordnung Hergestellt Hat

Last week, my friend, Jad, who is studying Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology at the University of Toronto, contacted me, asking if I could translate something from German for him. This wasn’t exactly a surprising turn, since materials on the ancient Near East and Classical world are fairly evenly split between French, English, and German, and while he speaks English just fine and his French is good enough to slog his way through what he needs to, his German is completely nonexistent. (Lest you think I’m insulting him, he’s also native bilingual in Arabic, can read Syriac, and is as good as me in Latin and Imperial Aramaic, and his French is awesome considering the late start he got on it.) My response was that I could do it, but it’d be pretty slow because of my relative inexperience in German. Still, it was only six pages long, so I got crackin’ and, although it took longer than it should have because I kept second-guessing myself, I got it back to him in time for his presentation on the material, and I think I did a fairly good job on it. Good enough, in fact, that I feel like publishing my translation here. The original article is entitled “Als König Abi-ešuh Gerechte Ordnung Hergestellt Hat” Eine Bemerkenswerte Altbabylonische Prozessurkunde by Michael Jursa, published in the Revue d’Assyriologie et d’Archéologie Orientale volume 91 issue 2 © 1997 Presses Universitaires de France, translated and reprinted for reference and educational purposes, used without permission.

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα

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10
Oct
10

Subtitling

Subtitling can be a tricky issue. I’ve tried my hand at subtitling before, so I know how hard it can be, getting the right words to show up in just the right place. You have all the problems of an accurate, idiomatic translation, amplified by the need to break it up into one- or two-line blocks in the right places and make it show up in the right place, down to the hundredth of a second. (Most subtitle formats allow for thousandths of a second, but rare is the case where that makes much difference.)

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα

21
Aug
10

Gospel of Matthew 3

And here we go again. A whole chapter this time! Well, it’s a short chapter, but the Bible is inconsistent about these things.

This time we leave Jesus for a bit to meet John the Baptist, a holy man very like Jesus who lived a little earlier, and whom early Christians coopted as a prophet of the coming of Jesus in order to take his followers into the fold. He is most famous for dunking people in water (βαπτίζω: to baptize; from βάπτω: to dip) in the process of confessing of sins (ἐξομολογέομαι τάς ἁμαρτίας), quite possibly related to the Jewish tradition of throwing one’s sins into the water on Yom Kippur. As part of the (frankly, weird to anyone who knows anything about Judea in the early Roman Empire) New Testament theme of Pharisee and Sadducee bashing, some of the aforementioned show up and, rather than thinking that maybe they want to be better people, John calls them names and tells them that someone is coming who will baptize them in fire (ouch!) In order to be sure everyone knows Jesus is better than John, Jesus goes for a baptism, and John says he should be the one getting baptized (see, in those days, only messianic figures could baptize someone), and of course there’s that reference to baptism in fire. Coincidentally, very John (The Divine. That’s a Revelation reference. Of St. John the Divine.)

There’s some other interesting things here. For one, verse 16 has a very odd construction (I’d translate it literally as “Jesus being baptized immediately, he came up from the water,” which is fine as it goes, but very odd in context, especially temporally). Also, “ἡ τροφὴ ἦν αὐτοῦ ἀκρίδες καὶ μέλι ἄγριον” (emphasis mine): “his food was locusts and wild honey.” That the author felt the need to specify suggests that there may have been domestic honey, harvested not by foresters but beekeepers. I’m sure there’s literature on that somewhere, but not having quick access to it at the moment I’m just going to say that I think that’s pretty cool, beekeepers in the days before bee suits and epinephrine.

There’s also a quote from Isaiah. There’s a lot of Old Testament quotes in the New Testament to “prove” that Jesus is the messiah (a lot of them merely force his life into a timeline that cannot be possible, of course). This one is meant to show that John is a prophet who will pave the way (see what I did there?) for Jesus.

Translation followed by original text (still using A Reader’s Greek New Testament: 2nd Edition, footnotes excised and numerals changed to Greek by me) below the cut.

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα

17
Aug
10

Matthew 2:13-23

Wow, I can’t believe I forgot about this! Yeah, I did actually finish translating Matthew 2 (and a little farther, actually, but not to a decent stopping point). I haven’t done much more, but I plan to keep working on it, since, as a college graduate, I don’t really ever work on any Greek that I don’t pick up myself. Here’s my translation of Matthew 2:13-23 (the rest of the chapter), followed by the Greek as copied from A Reader’s Greek New Testament (2nd Edition), but with the numerals changed to Greek because why not? My translation may sound a little awkward at times because I’m trying harder to maintain the impact of word choice and order than to translate colloquially.

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα

02
Aug
10

The Simple Things

Although I love making fancy food, and Americans in general like to pile on the flavors, I was recently reminded that sometimes simple is best.

καὶ τὰ λειπὀμενα

11
Jul
10

DnD Epicness

Yeah, so I’m an even bigger nerd than you thought: I play Dungeons and Dragons. Well, technically I don’t play the RPG Dungeons and Dragons, published by Wizards of the Coast ever since they bought out TSR. I’ve been playing with Paizo rules (with some throwbacks where we deem 3.5 better) for a few years now, and am currently a paladin in a campaign from Paizo’s Pathfinder setting (Curse of the Crimson Throne, in case you were wondering). Last night we had a few epic moments that I felt should be recorded for posterity.

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα

07
Jul
10

Real Life Phonology

Linguistics is a relatively young science, so it’s still got a few kinks to work out. One I just recently noticed is that the definition of “phoneme” needs a little work. The official definition is a little hard to pin down, but let’s go with the great Wiki’s “the smallest segmental unit of sound employed to form meaningful contrasts between utterances.” That’s a good enough definition for most purposes. However, phonemes are referred to by their base allophones, so I suppose that’s really what I have a problem with.

καὶ τὰ λειπόμενα