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lost in translation

Of a word or words, having lost or lacking the full subtlety of meaning or significance when translated from the original language to another, especially when done literally. (Usually formulated as "be/get lost in translation.") My friend tried explaining a few French idioms to me, but I'm afraid they were lost in translation. Online translation tools are pretty amazing, but a lot gets lost in translation this way.
See also: lost, translation

be lost in translation

Of a word or words, to lose the full subtlety of meaning or significance when translated from one language to another, especially when done literally. My friend tried explaining a few French idioms to me, but I'm afraid they were lost in translation. It's amazing how much is lost in translation in the subtitles of foreign films.
See also: lost, translation

get lost in translation

Of a word or words, to lose the full subtlety of meaning or significance when translated from one language to another, especially when done literally. My friend tried explaining a few French idioms to me, but I'm afraid they got lost in translation. It's amazing how much gets lost in translation in the subtitles of foreign films.
See also: get, lost, translation

free translation

 and loose translation
a translation or restatement that is not completely accurate and not well thought out; a translation or restatement done casually. John gave a free translation of what our Japanese client asked for, and we missed the main issue. Anne gave a very free translation of the ancient Chinese poem.
See also: free, translation
References in periodicals archive ?
Today there's a secondary level of importance because in many parts of Africa and Asia they no longer know Latin well, so English will become the base I translation which they will use for their translations into their vernacular.
But also, there would be higher risks of potentially wrong translations from anonymous partners: sharper criticism on received equivalences will be needed, making thus the revision process even more demanding.
Through various database translation support toots that can make effective use of past translations, and in the near future a document creation tool that can cope with each character code without being dependent on the computer's OS, Creer is investing in maximizing the latest translation technology," says Luu.
Henry Wansbrough's essay, "Tyndale," begins by explaining why the Bible in English appeared later than many other vernacular translations and ends with a discussion of its importance in relation to Renaissance theology and all modern translations.
The two are brought together by a New Jersey-based company with an expertise in project management, product localization and translation software, and a long list of worldwide offices.
In 1408 the Roman Catholic Church condemned this English version and any future translations.
It aids students in constructing their translations in much the same way as described above for the films of the other stories.
On April 25, Rome announced that it had created its own supervisory board for translations into English (Vox clara), which will make the final decision on what is, and what is not, acceptable (see C.
Lotus revealed at the LISA forum that it "enabled" 40 languages (everything from Latvian to Farsi), translated 12 of those languages in 90 days (including Greek, Czech and Polish) and did simultaneous translations of Japanese, FIGS (French, Italian, German, Spanish), Brazilian, Portuguese, and two forms of Chinese and Korean.
Etienne explains in his 1560 edition that he has added the notes he made while translating only those odes that appear to be without error and interesting in order to justify his translations which differ from those made by Elie Andre in 1556.
Language Weaver's translation systems produce fluent, natural sounding translations and save customers money and time through automation of the translation process.
Biblical translations should be faithful to the original language and to the internal truth of the inspired text, in such a way as to respect the language used by the human author in order to be understood by his intended reader.
One of the implications for the combination of telecommunications, machine translation and computer networks is that we might become accustomed to less-than-perfect translations as long as they serve the purpose in a given situation.
Two new translations of Boccaccio's Elegia have come out in recent years.