Harry Potter in Chinese, Japanese & Vietnamese Translation
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Chapter 27: The Centaur and the Sneak

 

Chinese (Mainland)
马人和告密生
Mǎrén hé gàomì-shēng
马人 mǎrén = 'horse-person' = 'centaur'.
= 'and'.
告密 gàomì = 'to tell-secret' = 'to inform'.
shēng = 'student (used as suffix)'.
Centaur and informer
Chinese (Taiwan)
人馬與告密者
Rénmǎ hé gàomì-zhě
人馬 rénmǎ = 'person-horse' = 'centaur'.
= 'and (formal)'.
告密 gàomì = 'to tell-secret' = 'to inform'.
zhě = 'person (used as suffix)'.
Centaur and informer
Japanese
ケンタウルスと密告者
Kentaurusu to mikkoku-sha
ケンタウルス kentaurusu = 'centaur'.
to 'and'.
密告者 mikkoku-sha 'informer'.
Centaur and informer
Vietnamese (Chinese characters show etymology)
Nhân mã và chỉ điểm nhân mã (人馬) = 'person-horse' = 'centaur'.
= 'and'.
chỉ điểm (指點) = 'spy, detective, informer'.
Centaur and spy

The centaur is Firenze. A centaur is literally a 'horse person' or a 'person horse' in Chinese and Vietnamese. Japanese uses the word ケンタウルス kentaurusu, which looks to the ancient Greek pronunciation rather than the modern English. Centaurs do not occur in Eastern mythology; these terms were originally coined to translate the Western name.

The 'sneak' is Marietta, who reported the activities of 'Dumbledore's Army' to Umbridge. To translate this, the Mainland version uses 告密生 gàomì-shēng 'informer'. Notice the suffix shēng meaning 'student'. The Taiwanese version uses the more conventional word for 'sneak', with the suffix zhě meaning 'person'. In Japanese, the order of elements is reversed, that is, 告密者 becomes 密告者.

The Vietnamese uses a word meaning 'spy' or 'detective' or 'informer'.

Needless to say, there is no alliteration in the Chinese or Vietnamese versions, unlike the English with centaur and sneak.

(A summary of this chapter can be found at Harry Potter Facts. Detailed notes on the chapter can be found at Harry Potter Lexicon)

Chapter 26
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