Bathrobe's Harry Potter in Chinese, Japanese & Vietnamese Translation
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Names of Hogwarts Staff in the Chinese translations of Harry Potter

 

(For the romanisation of Chinese, see Transliteration. To understand the writing systems of CJV, see Writing Systems.)

 

TEACHERS AND STAFF OF HOGWARTS
English
Mainland
Taiwan
Notes
Albus Dumbledore 阿不思・邓布利多
Ābùsī Dèngbùlìduō
阿不思鄧不利多
Ābùsī Dèngbùlìduō
Dumbledore is a venerable authority figure but his name is actually an old word for 'bumble bee'! Both Chinese translations use the comical sounding 鄧不利多 Dèngbùlìduō, which in the Taiwanese version means 'Deng not profit many'. / 'Deng' is a Chinese surname as in 'Deng Xiao-ping', the late supreme leader of China. The Mainland version changes 'not' () to 'cloth' (also ), losing the effect somewhat. The meaning of 阿不思 Ābùsī is 'ah not think' or 'Mr not think' ('Ah' is attached to names in the south of China to add a feeling of familiarity).
(Full name)
Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore
阿不思・珀西瓦尔・伍尔弗里克・布赖恩・邓布利多
Ābùsī Pòxīwǎ'ěr Wū'ěrfúlǐkè Bùlài'ēn Dèngbùlìduō
阿不思・博知維・巫服利・布萊恩・鄧不利多
Ābùsī Bózhīwéi Wūfúlì Bùlái'ēn Dèngbùlìduō
The comical name in English just turns into a long name in Chinese. There is no way in Chinese to convey the incongruity of having Wulfric and Brian in the same name! The Mainland translator is more meticulous in transliterating the name. The Taiwanese translator is rough and ready, but the first character in Wulfric, meaning 'wizard', is a nice touch.
Minerva McGonagall 米勒娃・麦格
Mǐlèwá Màigé
麥米奈娃
Mài Mǐnàiwá
Mài (Taiwanese version) is a real Chinese surname. Curiously, McGonagall's name is put in Chinese order (surname first) in this version.
Dolores Jane Umbridge 多洛雷斯・简・乌姆里奇
Duōluòléisī Jiǎn Wūmǔlǐqí
桃樂絲·珍·恩不里居
Táolèsī Zhēn Ēnbùlǐjū

The Mainland Chinese translator, rather inaccurately, transliterates as 乌姆里奇 Wūmǔlǐqí (meaning is 'dark housemaid inside strange', but the characters' function is phonetic.)

The Taiwanese rendition is also phonetic, although some meaning can be made out: ēn means 'kindness, favour, grace'; means 'not'; 里居 lǐ-jū means 'address'. The general implication is that there is no kindness or grace to be found with Dolores Umbridge.

Severus Snape 西弗勒斯・斯内普
Xīfúlèsī Sīnèipǔ
賽佛勒斯・石內卜
Sàifólèsī Shínèibǔ
The Mainland version is an orthodox way of representing the sound of 'Snape'. The first character is phonetic, without much meaning.

The Taiwanese version uses shí ('stone') rather than . This would not happen in standard Mandarin, where the sounds are distinct, but many regional speakers, especially in the South, pronounce shi as si. For a Southern speaker, the pronunciation is thus Sínèibǔ. Note that the i in Si is not pronounced.
Professor Quirrel 奇洛教授
Qíluò jiàoshòu
奎若教授
Kuíruò jiàoshòu
(Mainland) means 'strange' and is peculiarly common in and suitable for Harry Potter books. Kuí (Taiwan) is a Chinese surname. 教授 jiào-shòu means 'professor'.
Mr Flitwick 弗立维教授
Fúlìwéi jiàoshòu
孚立維教授
Fúlìwéi jiàoshòu
Both versions are phonetic. Neither translator has bothered to add the 'k' at the end of 'Flitwick'. It is possible that the Mainland translator has copied the Taiwanese as this character occurs in Book 1.
Professor Sprout 斯普劳特教授
Sīpǔláotè jiàoshòu
芽菜教授
Yá-cài jiàoshòu
'Sprout' in the Mainland version is purely phonetic. The Taiwanese version translates the meaning: 芽菜 Yá-cài means 'sprout' + 'vegetable'.
Professor Binns 宾斯教授
Bīnsī jiàoshòu
丙斯教授
Bǐngsī jiàoshòu
Phonetic transliteration.
Gilderoy Lockhart 吉德罗・洛哈特
Jídéluó Luòhātè
吉德羅・洛哈
Jídéluó Luòhā
Phonetic transliteration. = 'auspicious', = 'virtue'. / luò is a Chinese surname, although that is probably not relevant here. Beijing speakers learning English say 'Good morning' as 'Good-a morning', because their teachers place emphasis on each individual sound (including the 'd' at the end of 'good') rather than on the overall aural impression. The same reasoning leads the Mainland translator to add a to the end of 'Lockhart'. This scrupulously correct 't' is summarily disposed of by the Taiwanese translator.
Remus Lupin 卢平教授
Lúpíng jiàoshòu
雷木思・路平
Léimùsī Lùpíng
'Lupin' is rendered phonetically in both versions. The and in 'Lupin' are both surnames in Chinese. The name 路平 Lùpíng in the Taiwanese version means 'road is flat'. The Mainland version uses only the name 'Professor Lupin' or 'Lupin', omitting 'Remus'.
Sybill Trelawny 西比尔・特里劳妮
Xībǐ'ěr Tèlǐláonī
西碧・崔老妮
Xībì Cuīlǎonī
Both phonetic renditions, the Mainland version paying more attention to each individual sound, the Taiwanese to the total impression.

In the Taiwanese version, cuī is a Chinese surname. 老妮 lǎo-nī means 'old girl'. This conceals a pun. The surname cuī has the same pronunciation as cuī meaning 'hasten, urge'. The name 崔老妮 Cuīlǎonī thus means 'fast becoming an old spinster'. This term is often used by students in Taiwan to disparage teachers they don't like. The translation is a witty and apt name for Professor Trelawney. (Thanks to ZeYoung Liou for this observation).
Professor Grubbly-Plank 格拉普兰教授
Gélāpǔlán jiàoshòu
葛柏蘭教授
Gěbólán jiàoshòu
'Grubbly-Plank' is abbreviated in both versions. The Taiwanese version is a reasonably acceptable Chinese name (Surname is . is also a surname, but read Bǎi it means 'cypress'; not sure which pronunciation is intended here. Lán means 'orchid'.)
Mad-eye Moody 疯眼汉穆迪
Fēng-yǎn-hàn Mùdì
瘋眼穆敵
Fēng-yǎn Mùdì
Fēng = 'crazy', yǎn = 'eye', / hàn (Mainland version) = 'fellow'. 穆迪 / 穆敵 Mùdì is phonetic, but in the Taiwanese version has the meaning 'enemy'.
Griselda Marchbanks (Professor Marchbanks) 玛奇斑教授
Mǎqíbān jiàoshòu
溫順・馬治邦
Wēnshùn Mǎzhìbāng
溫順 (Taiwanese version) means 'temperate and docile'
Madam Pomfrey 庞弗雷夫人
Pángfúléi fūrén
龐芮夫人
Pángruì fūrén
'Madam Pomfrey' in the Mainland version is phonetic. The Taiwanese version is not so accurate but shorter and more easily remembered. Páng is the same character in both versions and means / 'vast, great'. It is also a Chinese surname. 夫人 fūrén means 'Mrs' or 'Madam'.
Madam Hooch 霍琦夫人
Huòqí fūrén
胡奇夫人
Húqí fūrén
'Madam Hooch' in the Mainland version could be a real Chinese name. The first character huò is a surname and the second character means 'jade'. The same would go for the Taiwanese version except that here means 'strange', not the normal choice for a name! 夫人 fūrén means 'Mrs' or 'Madam'.
Madam Pince 平斯夫人
Píngsī fūrén
朋夫人
Péng fūrén
The librarian. 平斯 Píngsī is phonetic. Péng means 'friend'.
Professor Tofty 托福迪教授
Tuōfúdì jiàoshòu
禿福教授
Tūfú jiàoshòu
托福 tuōfú (Mainland version) means 'entrust happiness' ( has no particular meaning) . 禿福 tūfú (Taiwanese version) means 'bald happy'!
Professor Sinistra 辛尼斯塔教授
Xīn'nísītǎ jiàoshòu
辛尼區教授
Xīn'níqū jiàoshòu
 
Horace Slughorn 霍拉斯・斯拉格霍恩
Huòlāsī Sīlāgéhuò'ēn
赫瑞司・史拉轟
Hèruìsī Shǐlāhōn

Possible transliterations of 'Horace' include 霍瑞斯 Huòruìsī, 霍勒斯 Huòlèsī, or 霍里斯 Huòlǐsī. The Mainland translator comes up with 霍拉斯 Huòlāsī. The Taiwanese translation is more idiosyncratic with 赫瑞司 Hèruìsī.

Translation of the meaning of Slughorn's name was one option, but the translators have not taken this route. Both try to represent the English pronunciation, as 斯拉格霍恩 Sīlāgéhuò'ēn or 史拉轟 Shǐlāhōng. The characters have no particular meaning. The Taiwanese rendition is shorter than the Mainland and starts with /sh/, pronounced /s/ in the local accent.

Argus Filch 费尔奇
Fèi'ěrqí
飛七
Fēiqī

The Taiwanese version gives 'Filch' the name: 'to fly' + 'seven', which is a very interesting translation. The character fēi is used in Chinese to describe a thief, especially when he is skilled at stealthy or undetected entry. The word 飛賊 fēizéi or 'flying thief' is the Chinese word for 'cat burglar'. The use of a number as a nickname is suggestive of secret societies, gangs and brotherhoods (see notes to Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix). This all goes to suggest that Filch is a thief -- quite similar, in fact, to the connotations of his name in English ('filch' = 'steal'). (Thanks to Simon Summer for pointing this out).

The Mainland version is phonetically more faithful to the English, but the meaning is less satisfactory. fèi means 'spend, waste'. ěr is phonetic. means 'strange'.

Rubeus Hagrid 鲁伯・海格
Lǔbó Hǎigé
魯霸・海格
Lǔbà Hǎigé
The hǎi in 'Hagrid' means 'sea', perhaps an allusion to his vast size? The Mainland name has probably taken the Taiwanese version as its inspiration, as in the case of many other names in Book 1.

 

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