Harry Potter in Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese & Mongolian Translation
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A Study of Recent Developments in Wizardry

 

 

Chinese (Mainland)
近代巫术发展研究
Jìndài wūshù fāzhǎn yánjiū
近代 jìndaì= 'modern'.
巫术 wūshù = 'wizard crafts'.
发展fāzhǎn = 'development'.
研究 yánjiū = 'study, research'.
Modern Wizardry Development Study
Chinese (Taiwan)
巫術最新發展研究
Wūshù zuìxīn fāzhǎn yánjiū
巫術 wūshù = 'wizard crafts'.
最新 zuìxīn= 'latest'.
發展 fāzhǎn = 'development'.
研究 yánjiū = 'study, research'.
Wizardry Recent Development Study
Japanese
魔法界における最近の進歩に関する研究
Mahō-kai ni okeru saikin no shinpo ni kansuru kenkyū
魔法 mahō = 'magic'.
-kai = 'circles/world'.
における ni okeru = 'in'.
最近 saikin = 'recent'.
no = connecting particle
進歩 shinpo = 'advance'.
に関する ni kansuru = 'regarding'.
研究 kenkyū = 'study, research'.
Study on Recent Advances in Magical Circles
Vietnamese (Chinese characters show etymology)
Một nghiên cứu về những phát triển gần đây trong pháp thuật một = 'a'.
nghiên cứu (研究) = 'study, research'.
về = 'concerning'
những = plural marker
phát triển (發展) = 'development'
gần đây = 'recent, late'.
trong = 'in'.
pháp thuật (法術) = 'magic'.
A Study on Recent Developments in Magic
Mongolian (previous)
Ид шидийн сүүлийн үеийн хөгжлийн судалгаа
Id shidiin süüliin üiin khögjliin sudalgaa
ид шид id shid = 'magic' (genitive form).
сүүлийн үе süüliin üe = 'recent times' (genitive form).
хөгжил khögjil = 'development' (genitive form).
судалгаа sudalgaa = 'research'.
Research of Magical Development of Recent Times
Mongolian (new)
Орчин үеийн Ид шидийн хөгжил судлал
Orchin üiin Id shidiin khögjil sudlal
орчин үе orchin üe = 'contemporaneous, present, modern' (genitive form).
ид шид id shid = 'magic' (genitive form).
хөгжил khögjil = 'development'.
судлал sudlal = 'study, research'.
Studies of Contemporary Development of Magic

A very academic-sounding title.

Wizardry

The English title uses 'wizardry', suggesting not merely 'magic' but the practical application of magic by wizards.

    The Chinese versions both use 巫術 / 巫术 wū-shù etymologically meaning 'techniques' ( / shù) used by 'wizards' ( / ).

    Vietnamese uses pháp thuật (法術), which it elsewhere uses as a term for 'magic'.

    Both Mongolian translations also simply use ид шид id shid 'magic'

    Japanese interprets 'wizardry' as 'the wizarding world' or 'wizarding circles' (魔法界 mahō-kai).

Recent

'Recent' suggests developments that have taken place in the last decade or so.

    The Taiwanese translation (Mandarin Chinese) uses 最新 zuìxīn 'latest, most recent, newest', suggesting that these are breaking developments, or at least developments that are relatively fresh.

    The Vietnamese translation uses gần đây 'recent, late', which is also close to the period intended.

    The Japanese uses 最近 saikin, literally 'nearest', generally used for 'recent'.

    The Mainland translation (Mandarin Chinese) uses 近代 jìndài 'modern'. This refers to the period prior to the contemporary period. In China it is likely to refer to the period prior to the Second World War and the liberation of China. It is thus too early for what would be covered in a book on 'recent' developments.

    The previous Mongolian translation uses сүүлийн үе süüliin üe meaning 'recent times, latest times'.

    The new Mongolian translation uses орчин үе orchin üe meaning 'contemporaneous, present, modern'.

Developments

The English word 'development' has conventionally fixed translations in other languages, all with a sense of 'progress', 'moving forward', or 'advancing to a higher stage'. But 'developments' (plural) does not necessarily have this sense in English and, having the etymological sense of 'unfold', can merely refer to changes that have taken place in the situation.

    The two Chinese translations both use 发展 / 發展 fāzhǎn 'development', referring to development in a positive and forward-looking sense.

    Vietnamese uses the same term, phát triển (發展).

    Japanese uses 進歩 shinpo with the equally positive meaning of 'advance'.

    Both Mongolian translations use the standard Mongolian term for 'development', хөгжил khögjil.

A Study

A study refers to a serious piece of study or research.

    Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese all use the same term, 研究 (Chinese yánjiū, Japanese kenkyū) or nghiên cứu meaning 'research'.

    The Mongolian translations also use fixed terms for 'research', either судалгаа sudalgaa or судлал sudlal.

Structure of Title

The English title uses prepositions to link the title together. 'Study' normally takes 'of'. 'Developments' usually take the preposition 'in'. Thus, 'A Study of Recent Developments in Wizardry'.

    The Chinese translations both use a straight concatenation of nouns, although in slightly different order. The meaning is thus: 'Modern Wizardry Development Study' or 'Wizardry Recent Development Study'.

    The Mongolian translations also use a concatenation of nouns, but unlike Chinese they are linked by the genitive form. The sense is thus 'Research of Magical Development of Recent Times' or 'Studies of Contemporary Development of Magic'.

    Vietnamese is wordier because it renders the English fairly literally, due to influence from European languages. The 'a' in 'a study', the 'in' of 'in wizardry', and the plural marker in 'developments' are all translated. The title thus reads 'A Study concerning Recent Developments in Magic'.

    The Japanese is the clumsiest and most verbose of all, reflecting the actual state of Japanese academic book titles. The title is best analysed from the end to the beginning.
      関する kansuru is a verb meaning 'to be related'. Literally に関する研究 ni kansuru kenkyū means 'research that concerns / is related to'.
      おける okeru is a verb meaning 'to be placed'. Literally, における進歩 ni okeru shinpo means 'advances that are in'.
    The entire title literally means 'Study concerning Recent Advances that are in Magical Circles'

Category: Wizardry

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