In reference to those holiday greetings I translated in a previous post, my translations of them sounded a bit weird, didn’t they? But hey, what do you want me to do? Change the meaning so they sound better to you?
Actually though, even though I said I translated them literally, I left some meaning out.
That’s right; I didn’t translate everything for you.
I left out all the parts that went overboard (from an English perspective) in expressing respect.
Consider this Korean sentence:
“2011년 한 해 동안 귀하가 폐사에 보내 주신 사랑에 감사드립니다.”
I translated it this way in in the blog post I referenced:
“Thank you for the love you have shared with our company during the 2011 year.” (Gotta love that “love” word there!)
But this is what it really says:
“Thank you, with respect, for the love which you, the esteemed, have shared in a respected way with our humble company during the 2011 year.”
Kind of weird, huh?
Korean Translation Tip – Korean really does include this much nuance expressing respect and humility, and especially in formal communications. However, it gets tedious (and runs the word count up unnecessarily) to translate it all so your Korean > English translator (including yours truly) generally leaves all this out. Just know it’s there but don’t think it needs to be included in the translations you deliver to your clients.
Oh, and by the way…
Thank you, with respect, for the love which you, the esteemed, have shared with humble ol’ me over the many years that humble ol’ I and my humble team have handled translation work for esteemed you…