Chapter Titles in Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese
Chapter 26: Seen and Unforeseen
Where a Vietnamese word has been borrowed from Chinese, the original Chinese character is shown in parentheses.
内外 nèiwài = 'inside and outside'
|Inside and outside of dreams|
Kàn-de-jiàn yǔ kàn-bu-jiàn
= 'can see, visible'.
與 yǔ = 'and (formal)'.
看不見 kàn-bu-jiàn = 'can't see, invisible'.
|Can see and cannot see|
Kako to mirai
|過去 kako =
と to = 'and'.
未来 mirai 'future'.
|Past and future|
|Vietnamese||Biết và không biết trước||biết
= 'to know, be aware of'.
và = 'and'.
không = 'not'.
biết = 'to know, be aware of'.
trước = 'before, beforehand'.
|To know and to not know beforehand|
All translators struggle with this title. The English passive is a succinct and elegant form that does not always travel well to other languages. Moreover, it is not totally clear what 'seen' refers to -- Harry's interview in the Quibbler, which was seen by Professor Umbridge, or the dream in which Harry saw through the eyes of Voldemort? 'Unforeseen' refers to Professor Trelawney's dismissal, which she ironically failed to foresee, despite being the teacher for divination.
Departing from literal translation of the English, the Chinese translator comes up with the brief but descriptive 'inside and outside of dreams'. The Japanese translator also departs considerably from the English with 'past and future'.
The Taiwanese translator cleaves closer to the English. For 'unforeseen', the translator uses 看不見 kàn-bu-jiàn, 'can't see, invisible'. Although slightly different in meaning, this does not do great violence to the sense.
The Vietnamese translator manages to stay closest to the English.