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系列翻译教程第11课:翻译技巧--切分与合并

一、 切分

英语中长句较多, 句中修饰语多且长,使句子结构复杂,所以英译汉时,不能照样克隆复制,而是得根据汉语语法的特点,灵活处理。切分就是一种常用的方法,是指把英语中的长句分解成两个或两个以上的句子。它常包括单词分译、短语分译和句子分译等三种情况。

(一) 单词分译

单词分译是指把原文中的一个单词拆译成一个小句或者句子。采用单词分译主要有两个目的:一是为了句法上的需要。由于一些单词在搭配、词义等方面的特点,直译会使句子生硬晦涩,翻译腔十足,而把某个单词分译却能使句子通顺,且不损伤原意。二是为了修饰上的需要,如加强语气,突出重点等。英语中的名词、动词、形容词和副词等都可分译。例如:

(1)We recognize that China's long-term modernization program understandably and necessarily emphasizes economic growth. 我们认识到,中国的长期现代化计划以发展经济为重点,这是可以理解的,也是必要的。

(2) Then and there he named the startled General lying wounded on his cot the new Commander in Chief of the Airforce… 他就在当时当地任命这位躺在榻上治伤的将军为空军总司令,使这位将军吃了一惊。

(3) A movie of me leaving that foxhole would look like a shell leaving a rifle. 我离开那个猫儿洞的速度之快,要是拍成电影的话,会象出膛的子弹一样。

(4) Yet it is painfully apparent that millions of Americans who would never think of themselves as law-breakers, let alone criminals, are taking increasing liberties with the legal codes that are designed to protect and nourish their society. 显然,数百万美国人从来没有想过自己会违法,更不用说犯罪了,而就是他们正在越来越肆意歪曲旨在保护和培育这个社会的法律条文,这真令人痛心。 (原文中painfully apparent如照字面译成"痛心地明显的",不合汉语表达习惯,将painfully单译成句,既突出了重点,表明作者对这一现象感到痛心的心情,又使语言自然流畅。)

(5) At present people have a tendency to choose the safety of the middle-ground reply. 现在,人们都倾向于采取不偏不倚的态度来回答问题,因为它安全,不招风险。 (choose the safety of the middle-ground reply如机械直译成"选择不偏不倚回答问题的安全",语言晦涩难懂。将safety分译出来则较好地解决了这一问题。)

(6) Auntie Julia vainly asked each of her neighbours in turn to tell her what Gabriel had said. 朱利亚姨妈接连向坐在旁边的人打听加布里埃尔刚才说了些什么,却没有问出个所以然来。

(二) 短语分译

短语分译是指把原文中的一个短语分译成一个句子。名词短语、分词短语、介词短语等有时都可以分译成句。例如:

(1) These cheerful little trams, dating back to 1873, chug and sway up the towering hills with bells ringing and people hanging from every opening. 这些令人欢快的小缆车建于1873年,嘎嚓嘎嚓摇摆爬上高耸的山峦。车上铃儿叮当作响,每个窗口都是人。(介词短语分译)

(2) The military is forbidden to kill the vessel, a relatively easy task. 军方被禁止击毁这艘潜艇,虽然要击毁它并不怎么费事。(名词短语分译)

(3) Invitingly green Angel Island, once a military installation, contains meandering trails and picnic spots ideal for a day's excursion. 迷人的天使岛郁郁葱葱,小径蜿蜒,是一日游的理想野餐场所。但在过去它却是一个军事基地。(名词短语分译)

(三) 句子分译

句子分译可以分为简单句的分译、并列复合句的分译、主从复合句的分译以及其他情况的分译。

A. 简单句的分译

(1) Daybreak comes with thick mist and drizzle. 黎明时分,大雾弥漫,细雨蒙蒙。

(2) But another round of war in the region clearly would put strains on international relations.但是,如果该地区再次发生战争,显然会使国际关系处于紧张状态。

B. 并列复合句的分译

并列英语复合句常常在分句连接处加以切分,译成两个或两个以上的句子。例如:

(1) I sat with his wife in their living room, looking out the glass doors to the backyards, and there was Allen's pool, still covered with black plastic that had been stretched across it for winter. 我跟他妻子一起坐在他们家的起居室里,望着玻璃门外的后院。后院里有阿伦的游泳池,上面还盖着过冬时铺上去的黑色塑料蓬。(在连词and处切分)

(2) On her once familiar street, as in any unused channel, an unfamiliar queerness had silted up; a cat wove itself in and out of railings, but no human eye watched Mrs Drover's return. 走在一度熟悉的大街上,就像在一条没有人走过的道路上一样,她心里充满了从未有过的新奇。一只猫在栏杆那儿绕来绕去,但是没有人留意特罗弗太太回来。(在; 处切分)

(3) The entire cable-car system recently got an overhaul after more than a century of operations, so you are on firm ground even if the streets seem to be tilting beneath you. 在运行了一个世纪之后,最近对整个缆车系统进行了彻底检修。所以即使你觉得街道似乎在下面倾斜,你在缆车上仍很安全。(在连词so处切分)

(4) The recruitment of Chinese labor was not universally accepted in racially conscious 19th century America and some white workers were unsettled by their appearance in large numbers. 在种族意识十分强的19世纪的美国,招募中国劳工的做法并非普遍为人接受。由于工地上大批出现中国劳工,某些白人工人感到心绪不宁。(在连词and处切分)

C. 主从复合句的分译

英语复合句汉译时常在分句连接处加以切分,分译成两个或两个以上的句子。例如:

(1) One day, while out on the bleak moors, Pip is startled by a hulking, menacing man who threatens him if he does not bring him some food immediately. 匹普外出在阴冷的荒原上游荡时,一个魁梧、凶狠的男子把他吓了一跳。这个男子威胁他,让他立即为他送些食物来。(在who引导的从句前切分)

(2) All this had come to an end in 1905 when the medical mission was dissolved and several of Mother's colleagues were killed in the uprising. 1905年,这一切都宣布结束了。在一次暴动中,妈妈的几个同事牺牲了,医疗队也解散了。 (when处切分)

D. 其他情况的分译

有些长句的翻译得根据具体情况、意群的分布等进行灵活处理,合理进行切分,使译文层次分明,观点明确。例如:

(1) Suddenly the door bursts open and the Time Traveler appears, dirty, disheveled, and bedraggled, with a nasty cut on his chin. 突然,门猛然开了,时间旅行家出现。他十分肮脏,衣冠不整,满身是泥,下巴颏被严重划伤。(在appear后切分)

(2) The boy and the woman were already seated by spread table-cloth when the man came down to them, dressed in his business suit and vest and tie and hat as if he expected to meet someone along the way. 等到男人走过来时,女人和孩子早已挨着地上铺开的桌布边坐好了。男人身穿上班的套装和背心,系着领带,戴着帽子,似乎估计路上会遇到什么人似的。(分词短语前切分)

二、合并

一般说来,英语句子要比汉语句子长,英译汉时切分用得较多;但是较口语化的英语句子也比较短,英译汉时有时也得用合并。合并常用于以下二种情况:

(一) 简单句与简单句的合并

把原文中的两个或两个以上的简单句合并成一个句子。例如:

(1) She is intelligent, ambitious and hard-working. She is also good at solving problems. 她很有才智、雄心勃勃、工作努力,还善于解决问题。(两句合一)

(2) The door was unlocked. She went inside and sat in a stupor. She was near collapse, barely able to move her swollen feet. 门没锁上,她走了进去,呆呆地坐了下来,极度的衰弱几乎使她无力挪动她那红肿的双脚。(三句合一)

(3) I pulled up a chair and sat down. I sat with my legs wide apart at first. But this struck me as being irreverent and too familiar. So I put my knees together and let my hands rest loosely on them. 我把椅子挪过去坐下,开始两脚分开,但我突然觉得这样显得不尊重,太不拘礼节,便把两膝并拢,把双手随便地放在膝盖上。(四句合一)

(二) 复合句的合并

把原文中的主从复合句或并列复合句译成一个简单句或词组。例如:

(1) We are going to have to be prepared to operate with people who are nuts. 我们将不得不应付那些难对付的家伙。

(2) And he found himself trying to suppress a bitterness that was soul-destroying. 他发现自己在竭力抑制损伤灵魂的苦涩。

(3) Many people have married whose chances to do so were much inferior to Miss Martha's. 许多条件远不如玛莎的人都已结了婚。

(4) The diagnosis seems in every case to correspond exactly with all the sensations that I have ever felt. 每次看病的诊断似乎都和我所有的感觉完全相符。



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