Pathetic Mistranslations

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
If you find examples of institutions or million dollar companies using hopeless mistranslations in their products, please post a link here.
 
See this video:
at EXACTLY 56 seconds.

The text comes from the movie The Hunger Games, and it is an excerpt from the "The Treaty of The Treason" (No I'm not making that name up) here is the part that you can read:

hoc edictum legem
signed hic hodie exstant in Capitolio Panem
The inclusion of "signed" without any shame whatsoever should speak for itself...
Anyone have any idea what this is actually saying?

Unfortunately I couldn't find this scene in full HD on youtube, the rest of the text in that frame is also legible, but alas, not in this definition.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
This edicted law signed today that "panem" is existant in the Capitolium?
"Panem" signed this edicted law today in the existant Capitolium?
This law is edicted, signed today by "Panem", seated in the Capitolium? (I know "panem" is the name of some organization in the film, that's why I didn't translate "bread" lol.)

LOL LOL LOL LOL. That's funny people senselessly compiling Latin (or mixed with English here...) words to give a mysterious look to their stuff. But when you know at least a little bit of Latin, it isn't mysterious, it's ridiculous. :D
 
This edicted law signed today that "panem" is existant in the Capitolium?
"Panem" signed this edicted law today in the existant Capitolium?
This law is edicted, signed today by "Panem", seated in the Capitolium? (I know "panem" is the name of some organization in the film, that's why I didn't translate "bread" lol.)

LOL LOL LOL LOL. That's funny people senselessly compiling Latin (or mixed with English here...) words to give a mysterious look to their stuff. But when you know at least a little bit of Latin, it isn't mysterious, it's ridiculous. :D
LOL I was a bit afraid my Latin skills were not up to par and that secretly somehow that quote made sense. Glad to see Its not that way :D

"Panem" is the name of the country where they live in the film btw :)
 

Iohannes Aurum

Technicus Auxiliarius
I believe that the mistranslation is found in the original novel and it happened to be transferred over to the movie. The scriptwriters were obviously not good in Latin. Suzanne Collins can obviously easily afford a professional Latin translator herself.
 

Aurifex

Aedilis
Staff member
The inclusion of "signed" or other English words in gibberish Latin is smoking-gun evidence of Google Translator.
I like the smoking-gun metaphor applied to Google.
Incidentally, Google Translate translates "smoking-gun evidence of Google translate":
fumigans-gun evidentiam Google vertendumque
whilst "smoking-gun evidence of Google Translate" is:
fumigans-gun evidentiam Google Reddo

It's difficult to decide which of these shots from Google's gun is more off target.
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Google translate should have an option of back-translation of its own translations, that would allow people to know what the hell was meant in the beginning. Providing this option wouldn't be as messed-up as the rest. But it should be possible, and less complicated than real translations, no - if at least one of the two languages is a non inflected one, I suppose? Some memory remembering what word of a given language it translates this word of another given language with (giving alternatives if there are several), etc. Of course one would have to know the initial language (here most probably English), or try them all until one makes sense.

Anyway, talking of bad Latin in films, I remember having been shocked when, watching some medieval-themed French series, I heard an inquisitor say this:

In Nomine Patris et Filius et Spiritus Sancti.

To mess up even such a well-known formula...
 

Arca Defectionis

Civis Illustris
Anyway, talking of bad Latin in films, I remember having been shocked when, watching some medieval-themed French series, I heard an inquisitor say this:

In Nomine Patris et Filius et Spiritus Sancti.

To mess up even such a well-known formula...
Now, now: Both the Son and the Spirit of the Saved Man [are] in the Name of the Father.

Makes sense. Just a bit of a different meaning. :p
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
This one was posted by Acsacal on another forum we're both on some time ago already:

Amo vitam
Amo generem
Tamen quare sum sola
Amo rosam
Desidero pacem
Tamen quare sum sola

The translation they give:

I love life
I love sex
Why am I then lonely?
I love the rose
I yearn for peace
Why am I then lonely?

I suppose they thought it was the accusative of genus... Venerem would have been better, maybe
 
Seen in Bioshock Infinite (an otherwise amazing game, btw) inside the house of the Fraternal Order of the Ravens, their motto is:
Audemus patria nostra defendere

it is supposed to read: "We dare to defend our country"
of course, anyone with a semester of Latin could have told you that it should be patriam nostram.
 

Aurifex

Aedilis
Staff member
It could be vulgar Latin's m omissa...
I'd rather have put it like this: "The only way we could possibly excuse this as correct Latin would be by assuming the originators of it were consciously and defiantly writing Vulgar Latin, even though they must have realised that their failure to mark the accusative inflection would be almost universally interpreted as a result of ignorance and nothing more."
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
I know it was most certainly by ignorance, lol.
 

limetrees

Civis Illustris
Couldn't they be daring to defend by means of their fatherland - a risk all to win all strategy?
 
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