《论语·第一章》学而篇 -英语翻译教程-中英双语赏析

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子曰:“学而时习之,不亦说乎?有朋自远方来,不亦乐乎?人不知,而不愠,不亦君子乎?”

Is it not a delight, said the Master, to acquire knowledge and put it into practice? Is it not a pleasure to meet friends coming from afar? Is he not an intelligentleman, who is careless alike of being known or unknown?

🎈注意said the Master不像中文「子曰」一样放在开头,而放在句子中间做插入语。这在文学作品中很常见,比如在Pride and Prejudice中有Have you any other objection, said Elizabeth, than your belief of my indifference?

Q:「学」为什么不译为learn?

🎈牛津词典中对learn的解释是gain knowledge or skill,而原文「学」指「学习知识」,故译为acquire knowledge更为精准。汉英翻译的一大难点就是exact wording。

🎈不亦说乎?不亦乐乎?不亦君子乎?这三个句型结构相似,为反问句,意为 「难道不……吗?」译为Is it not+a/an+n.?/Is he not +a/an+n.? 这里可积累一下中文反问句的英文译法。

🎈「君子」译为intelligentleman,即intelligent+gentle+man。

🎈be careless of sth,不关心/不在意xx (not concerned about something)

有子曰:“其为人也孝弟,而好犯上者,鲜矣;不好犯上,而好作乱者,未之有也。君子务本,本立而道生。孝弟也者,其为仁之本与!“

Few who respect their parents and their elders, said Master You, would do anything against their superiors. None who do nothing against their superiors would rise in revolt. An intelligentleman should be fundamentally good. A fundamentally good man will behave in the right way. Respect for one’s parents and elder brothers is the fundamental quality for a good man.

🎈「其为人也孝弟,而好犯上者,鲜矣」这句原文「鲜矣」放在句末,而译文里转译为Few who…,则把「鲜矣」之意提前了。这就应用到了C-C-E的翻译技巧,即在汉英翻译中,有时候一个句子直译为英文可能不大地道,这时我们可以先对中文原文转换说法,比如这里原文大意是「一个人孝顺父母,敬爱兄长,却喜欢触犯在上位的人,这种人是很少见的」,我们可以先将其转换说法为「很少人… …」

🎈再谈「其为人也孝弟,而好犯上者,鲜矣」,这句话里「为人也孝弟,而好犯上」看似平行结构,但许译将「为人也孝弟」处理为定语从句,将「好犯上」处理为主句谓语,如此主次手法处理使译文更有层次感,可读性更强。

🎈「务本」译为fundamentally good,学习一下这种adv.+adj.的翻译/写作方法,常见的例子有「身心健康」译为physically and mentally healthy

子曰:“巧言令色,鲜矣仁!”

A good man, said the Master, would rarely say what he does not believe, or pretend to appear better than he is.

🎈这里用了反译法,原文意为「花言巧语,伪装出一副和善的面孔,这种人很少是仁德的」, 译文处理为「一个好人不会花言巧语,伪装出一副和善的面孔」

曾子曰:“吾日三省吾身——为人谋而不忠乎?与朋友交而不信乎?传不习乎?”

I ask myself, said Master Zeng, three questions everyday. In dealing with others, have I not thought of their interests? In making friends, have my deeds not agreed with my words? In teaching students, have I not put into practice what I teach them?

🎈In doing=When doing,表做xx事时。译文将「为人谋」in dealing with others、与朋友交in making friends、传in teaching students,分别用in+doing的结构译出,单独拿出来当状语,三个in+doing并列,形成排比,读起来更朗朗上口。

🎈传不习乎put into practice what I teach them,可以与上文「学而时习之」acquire knowledge and put it into practice放在一起理解领悟。类似的说法还有知行合一。

子曰:“道千乘之国,敬事而信,节用而爱人,使民以时。”

In a country of a thousand war-chariots, said the Master, the ruler should be respectful in deed and faithful in word, thrifty in expenditure and affectionate towards the people and tell them to labor at the proper times of the year.

🎈道,治理。原文的意思为「要统治一个千乘之国,应当… …」,这里翻译时再次使用C-C-E,先将中文原文转换说法为「在一个千乘之国,统治者应当… …」

🎈译文中be respectful in…/faithful in…/thrifty in…/affectionate towards…形成并列,结构对称。

子曰:“弟子,入则孝,出则悌,谨而信,泛爱众,而亲仁。行有余力,则以学文。”

A young man, said the Master, should be filialat home and respectful abroad, cautious and trustworthy, affectionate towards all and intimate with the good. If he has time to spare when his duties are done, he may use it to learn arts.

🎈入,在家,at home

出,在外面,abroad

译文均处理为状语。

🎈「信」译为trustworthy。延伸一下:仁(benevolence)、义(righteousness)、礼(courtesy)、智(wisdom)、信(trustworthiness)

子夏曰:“贤贤易色;事父母,能竭其力;事君,能致其身;与朋友交,言而有信。虽曰未学,吾必谓之学矣。”

If a man, said Zi Xia, loves virtue above beauty, does his best to serve his parents, devotes his life to the service of the prince and keeps his words in making friends, though he is not learned as people may say, I will say he is cultured.

🎈贤贤易色,第一个贤是动词,表重视;第二个贤是名词,表品德、内在美;易是动词,换掉,即不重视;色是名词,表外在美。意为重内在美(virtue),不重外在美(beauty)。杨伯峻先生将贤贤易色解释为:对妻子,看中品德,不看中姿色。所以译文处理为love virtue over beauty。

🎈虽曰未学,吾必谓之学矣。这里的两个「学」译为learned/cultured,类似于educated,积累一下「受过教育/有涵养/有教养/有文化的」表达方式。例如,a well-read and cultured woman

子曰:“君子不重,则不威;学则不固。主忠信。无友不如已者。过,则勿惮改。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, should not be frivolous, or he would lack solemnity in his behavior and solidity in his learning. He should be truthful and faithful, and befriend his equals. He should not be afraid of admitting and amending his faults.

🎈不重,不自重,行为举止轻率,译为frivolous (If you describe someone as frivolous, you mean they behave in a silly or light-hearted way, rather than being serious and sensible. )

🎈学而不固,lack solidity in his learning。这里可用联系常见表达「基础巩固」a solid foundation。如The first two years provide a solid foundation in the basics of computing.

曾子曰:“慎终,追远,民德归厚矣。”

If a ruler regrets the death of his parents, said Master Zeng, and never forgets his ancestors, then people would follow him in doing good.

🎈中文原文没有主语,译文补出了主语a ruler。翻译时经常需要对无主语句添加主句,这时需要根据上下文推断应当添加什么主语。

子禽问于子贡日:“夫子至于是邦也,必闻其政,求之与?抑与之与?”子贡曰:“夫子温、良、恭、俭、让以得之。夫子之求之也,其诸异乎人之求与?”

Zi You said to Zi Gong, “When our Master comes to a country, he would make inquiry into the way how the state is governed.Is the inquiry made on invitation or on his own initiative?” Zi Gong said, “Our Master makes inquiry in a good way, moderate and temperate, modest and humble. Is it not different from other ways of inquiry? What matters if it is made on invitation or on his own initiative?”

🎈求之与?抑与之与?”第一个和第三个通「欤」,语气助词,表疑问;第二个通「予」,给予。整句意为「是自己求得?还是别人告诉他?」故译为Is the inquiry made on invitation or on his own initiative?

🎈夫子之求之也,其诸异乎人之求与?单看这个句子,大意指「孔子调查的方式与他人不同」,即孔子调查时,是「温、良、恭、俭、让以得之」,联系上文子禽之问,暗含「重要的是老师做调查时的品质(温、良、恭、俭、让),至于是自己求得还是别人告知,则不重要」,因此末尾增译了What matters if it is made on invitation or on his own initiative?

子曰:“父在,观其志;父没,观其行;三年无改于父之道,可谓孝矣。”

Judge a man by what he will do to his father who is alive, said the Master, and by what he has done to his father who is dead. A son who does not alter his father’s ways three years after the father’s death may be called filial.

🎈志,志向,指向未来,故译为what he will do;行,行为,指过往和当下的所作所为,故译为what he has done

🎈「父在」「父没」分别译为定语从句,即his father who is alive、his father who is dead。即将主谓结构转化为偏正结构。父在,父亲在世(主谓结构),转化为在世的父亲(偏正结构);父没,父亲离世(主谓结构),转化为去世的父亲(偏正结构)

🎈「父在,观其志;父没,观其行」这句话探讨的是「评判一个人是否孝顺的方法」,因此译文以Judge a man by…, and by…引出两种情形下的两种方法。

🎈三年无改于父之道,可谓孝矣。添加主语a son。 「三年无改于父之道」处理为定语从句who does not alter his father’s ways three years after the father’s death,注意这里定语从句含假设之意,即如果儿子能够三年无改于父之道,那么可谓孝。

有子曰:“礼之用,和为贵。先王之道,斯为美;小大由之。有所不行,知和而和,不以礼节之,亦不可行也。”

In performing the rites, said Master You, propriety is important. That is the fair way how former kings dealt with matters great or small. But it will not do to observe propriety without the regulation of the rites.

🎈matters great or small,形容词great or small放在名词matters后面,稍有强调意味,即事情无论大小都能处理得好。如There are all kinds of lanterns, floats, big or small.

🎈it will not do to do something, 指做xx行不通的/不奏效,可作为句型积累起来用于口语/翻译/写作。如在电影Cinderella中有It will not do to let the stag go free,

有子曰:“信近于义,言可复也。恭近于礼,远耻辱也。因不失其亲,亦可宗也。”

If you make a promise, said Master You, in accordance with what is right, your promise can be carried out. If you respect a man in accordance with the rites, you will be far from dishonor. If you are not discredited by your kins, you will be reliable.

🎈「信近于义」「恭近于亲」,这两个短句结构一致。「近于」,表符合,译为in accordance with…

🎈言可复也,复,指履行诺言,常见搭配为carry out/fulfill one’s promise

子曰:“君子食无求饱,居无求安,敏于事而慎于言,就有道而正焉,可谓好学也已。”

An intelligentleman, said the Master, eats to live, and not lives to eat. He may dwell in comfort, but not seek comfort in dwelling. He should be prompt in action and cautious in speech. He should seek good company and amend his faults. Such a man may be said to be good at learning.

🎈「食无求饱」译法套用了西方谚语Eat to live, but not live to eat。「求」,追求,表目的,故这里用not live to eat十分合适,to eat不定式表目的,表达出「求」之意。

🎈「居无求安」译为dwell in comfort, but not seek comfort in dwelling,与上文「食无求饱」eats to live, and not lives to eat结构相似,读来更有美感

🎈敏于事be prompt in action,慎于言be cautious in speech,与「敬事」be respectful in deed而信faithful in word,节用thrifty in expenditure而爱人affectionate towards the people放在一起积累,积累be+品质adj.+prep.+n.这个表达结构。

子贡曰:“贫而无谄,富而无骄,何如?”子曰:”可也;未若贫而乐,富而好礼者也。”子贡曰:“《诗》云:‘如切如磋,如琢如磨’其斯之谓与?”子曰:“赐也,始可与言《诗》已矣,告诸往而知来者。”

Zi Gong said. “What do you think of a poor man who does not flatter and a rich man who does not swagger?” The Master said, “Not bad, but not so good as a poor man who is cheerful and a rich man who is respectful” Zi Gong said, “Are such menlike polished ivory and stone and jade refined, as said in the Book of Poetry?” The Master said, “My dear Zi Gong, now I may begin to talk with you aboutPoetry. For when I told you about the past, you can anticipate the future.”

🎈首句译文中,flatter与swagger押韵,体现音美beauty in sound/prosodic beauty。在许渊冲的英译中,经常可以看到押韵,如「梧桐更兼细雨 到黄昏 点点滴滴」 On parasol trees a fine rain drizzles, As twilight grizzles.( drizzle和grizzle押韵);「近乡情更怯,不敢问来人」译为Now nearing home, timid I grow; I dare not ask what I would know.(grow和know押韵)

🎈拓展:许渊冲的三美论:意美(message beauty)、音美(prosodic beauty)、形美(form beauty)

🎈这里「骄」译为swagger(to walk proudly, swinging your shoulders in a way that shows you are very confident – used to show disapproval),即大摇大摆、趾高气昂地走路,用swagger将「骄」这一抽象概念具体化,十分形象生动。化抽象为具体,可以让语言更有画面感,比如,翻译「他奄奄一息」,我们可能译为He is near death. 但其实还可以译为He is inches from death,这里用be inches from让人感觉十分逼近,更有画面感。

🎈贫而乐,a poor man who is cheerful;富而好礼,a rich man who is respectful。为什么不处理为a poor and cheerful man/a rich and respectful man?比较一下这两种译法,就会发现第二种(即直接将形容词并列)稍显堆砌,而许译版本(将两个形容词分开做前置、后置定语)则显得结构更为匀称。

🎈《诗》指《诗经》,译为Book of Poetry。大家注意积累一下经典作品的译名,如《论语》(the Analects of Confucius)、《孟子》(the Mencius)、大学(the Great Learning)、《中庸》(the Doctrine of the Mean)

子曰:“不患人之不已知,患不知人也。”

I care less, said the Master, to be understood and recognized by other people than to understand and recognize others.

🎈不患A,患B。处理为I care less to do A than to do B

重点表达

君子 intelligentleman

孝弟 respect their parents and their elders

犯上 do something against superiors

作乱 rise in revolt

千乘之国 a country of a thousand war-chariots

敬事 be respectful in deed

节用 thrifty in expenditure

泛爱众 affectionate towards all

贤贤易色 love virtue above beauty

慎终 regret the death of his parents

追远 never forget his ancestors

温、良、恭、俭、让 moderate and temperate, modest and humble

礼 rite

和 propriety

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