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Minas Tirith Forums » Reference Material » Names in your language (Page 2)
Author Topic: Names in your language
Tigranes
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Barrow-wights - Grabunholde (again literally).
They could have used "Wichte" (same word as wights) but that word is nowadays more of a pejorative and doesn't really carry an ominous sound anymore.


quote:
("ä" is pronounced like the a in "bad", whereas "a" is pronounced "ah")
Roughly. German vowels are all different from English vowels - the latter have a somewhat nasalized quality, whereas the German vowels are clear sounding. There isn't really an equivalent to ä in English.


"Bruchtal" literally means Rivendell, though I suspect it can also have another meaning - in Northern Germany we have brook, which is similar to the English meaning of the word. This might very well be related to "bruch", but I don't have a German dictionary here to prove it.

Since Tolkien's languages and place names are very German-friendly in pronunciation, many (non-English) names have been left as they are (particularly the Frankish and Celtic ones). The first (and only. The new one never happened) German translation is awesome, BTW. Tolkien himself oversaw some of it.

[ 07-24-2010, 12:27 AM: Message edited by: Tigranes ]

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Mithcoriel
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Oh yeah, forgot:
Elf - Elb

And if that's relevant at all: the title of the book "The Hobbit" was made into "The little Hobbit".


quote:
Roughly. German vowels are all different from English vowels - the latter have a somewhat nasalized quality, whereas the German vowels are clear sounding. There isn't really an equivalent to ä in English.
Really? o_O Cause German and English are both my mother languages, and I would have said there's no difference between the two. If I wanted to tell german-speakers how to pronounce "bad", I would spell it "bäd".
If there is any difference at all, it would have to be so subtle, I'd call it simply a different accent, not a different pronounciation.

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Mithrennaith
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Again dealing with the Dutch translations of those names and terms introduced to this topic since my previous post:

Dwarrowdelf - Dwergenkrocht (‘Dwarves’ cavern’, krocht being an archaic word for ‘cavern, vault’, possibly cognate to ‘croft’ as in ‘undercroft’.)
Westernesse - Westernisse (nisse being a cognate of ‘ness, nesse’ of roughly the same meaning and roughly as obsolete, wester- being as usual in Dutch as ‘wester-’ in English and meaning the same.)
Farmer Maggot - Boer (Van der) Made (Boer translating ‘farmer’ directly, also in e.g. Boer Gilles for ‘Farmer Giles’; made is the Dutch translation of ‘maggot’, however, Van der Made is an existing Dutch surname, referring not to maggots, but to the place name Made, in the province of Noord-Brabant, which only accidentally has the same shape, but is derived quite differently; thus echoing Tolkien’s explanation of ‘Maggot’ in the Guide to Names.)
Goldilocks - Goudhaartje (literally ‘litte gold hair’)
Middle-earth - Midden-aarde (this looks like a literal translation of the elements ‘middle’ as midden and ‘earth’ as aarde, ignoring the derivation from middangeard showing that there is actually no direct connection with ‘earth’. But even taking the view that a literal translation might be appropriate, this form is actually incorrect, as the hyphen, present in the English name only for reasons of pronunciation, has apparently been introduced in the Dutch name by analogy. There, however, it serves no purpose at all and is therefor out of place, the proper Dutch form should be Middenaarde. Tolkien’s most important Dutch translator has, however, consistently used the hyphen, and as a consequence the hyphenated form has become ossified in Dutch. A better translation based on the OE form middangeard would be middelgaarde; but even Norse Midgård is in Dutch simply assimilated as Midgard.)
Helm's Deep - Helmsdiepte (perfectly literal translation using cognate elements)
The Fellowship - Het Reisgenootschap (meaning ‘the traveling fellowship’, genootschap literally translating ‘fellowship’, but in contemporary Dutch also functioning as a high-sounding term for a society, as an alternative to the common vereniging.)
Elf - Elf (actually an existing Dutch word - probably borrowed when translating Shakespeare. There is an older dialectal form alf that was not used by the translators of Tolkien. Plural elfen, adjective elfs.)

The title of the book The Hobbit simply became De Hobbit, translating the article and strictly following Tolkien’s injunction not to change ‘hobbit’; its subtitle ‘or There and Back Again’ being translated literally as of Daarheen en Weer Terug.

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Artaresto
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More..

Middle-Earth - Midgard (Norse)
Mirkwood - Myrkskog (Meaning 'dark wood', and where mirk and myrk probably share the same precursor)
Shelob - Hutula (She = Hu [in certain dialects])
Helm's Deep - Helmsdjupet (+/- translation)
Fellowship - Brorskap (more like brotherhood, perhaps)
Iron Hills - Jernhøene (hø is a rare alternative to haug and has a Danish feel to it)
Isengard - Jarnagard (Jarn is Norse for iron, whence Tolkien also got 'gard' from, I'll bet.
Brandywine - Brennvina (brennevin spans all liquor, but is a good phonetic translation)
Grey Havens - Gråhavnene (translation)
Sting - Stikk/Brodd (stick [as in to stick]/sting)

[ 12-19-2010, 11:11 AM: Message edited by: Artaresto ]

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Artaresto
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Interesting piece from the Silmarillion:

Mount Dolmed - Dolmedberget (berg)
Mount Rerir - Rerirtinden (tind)
Mount of Taras - Tarasfjellet (fjell)

The (excellent) Norwegian translator of the Silmarillion uses 3 synonyms for 'mount', meaning 'rock', 'peak' and 'mountain' respectively.

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Hamfast Gamgee
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How do foreign languages cope with Dwarfs and Dwarves?
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Artaresto
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No difference here.
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