Harry Potter in Chinese, Japanese & Vietnamese Translation


The Titles of Magical Books in Harry Potter


Travels With Trolls


Chinese (Mainland) 与巨怪同行
Yǔ jùguài tóngxíng
= 'with'.
巨怪 jùguài = 'giant monster, demon'.
同行 tóngxíng = 'travel together'.
Travelling With a Giant Monster
Chinese (Taiwan) 與山怪共遊
Yǔ shànguài gòngyóu
= 'with'.
山怪 shànguài = 'mountain monster, demon'.
共遊 gòngyóu = 'travel together'.
Travelling With a Mountain Monster
Japanese トロールとのとろい旅
Torōru to no toroi tabi
トロール torōru to = 'troll' (English) + 'with' = 'with a troll'.
no = connecting particle
とろい toroi = 'slow, dull, dull-witted'.
tabi = 'journey'.
Slow Travels With a Troll
Vietnamese Ngao du với quỷ khổng lồ

Du Hành Cùng Người Khổng Lồ
ngao du (邀遊) = 'travel, roaming (old-fashioned)'.
với = 'with'.
quỷ () = 'evil spirit, devil, fiend'.
khổng lồ = 'huge, colossal'.

du hành (遊行)= 'touring'.
cùng = 'along with'.
người = ‘person'.
khổng lồ = 'huge, colossal'.
Roaming with a Colossal Fiend

Travelling with a Colossal Person

The books in the Gilderoy Lockhart Series follow a simple but humorous pattern in English. All describe spending time with a particular kind of unsavoury creature, expressed in the form 'X with Y'. In each case there is alliteration between X and Y (Break with a Banshee, Gadding with Ghouls, Holidays with Hags, etc.).

The interesting points in any translation are:

    How this assortment of unpleasant creatures is translated.

    How the parallel meanings are expressed.

    How the effect of the alliteration is reproduced. This is the most difficult task because alliteration is, of course, dependent on the particular sound of words in a language.


The troll is a European creature, specifically from northern Europe. The word has been adopted into Japanese as トロール torōru. The Chinese, Taiwanese, and Vietnamese translators resort to explanatory words or expressions.

The Japanese uses a witty alliteration. とろい toroi is a rather colloquial word meaning 'dull, slow-witted' and is a fitting description for a trip with a troll.


The Chinese echoes the common advertising copy 与时代同行 yǔ shídài tóngxíng 'Moving with the times'.

Break With A Banshee Gadding With Ghouls Holidays With Hags
Voyages With Vampires Wandering With Werewolves Year With The Yeti

Category: Adventure

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