Archive for Lost in translation

Breath Clay

From a page at Chambers Wines about the VinItaly exhibition in Verona:

Caption: "Some translations are more successful than others".

But what, asks Francois Lang, is "Breath Clay" a (bad?) translation of?

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Pre-natal wifi

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Jackie Chan Campus Station

As Language Log readers are well aware, Jackie Chan recently became super famous for the amazing bounciness of his hair and the mystical syllable he proclaimed in self-admiration: "Duang " (3/1/15) and "More on 'duang'"  (3/19). Now we find that he has a bus stop named after him:


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Anti-Bowl

A month ago, we studied the enigma of "Anti-mouth-bowls" (3/1/15).  It was Jan Söhlke who had sent me a photograph of what were labeled "Anti-Mund-Schuessel" ("anti-mouth-bowl").  He mentioned that the same Viennese shop had other bowls with equally mystifying names and promised to go back and take pictures of them.  Jan has now delivered on his promise by sending the following photographs:

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Ask Language Log: hippocampus

Via Jason Schrock on Twitter

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Japlish t-shirt

Axel Schuessler's daughter is visiting Japan and saw in a store the shirt below:

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"English will not be longer problem for your!"

Yvonne Treis sent in this photograph of a sign at an “America English” language school in Addis Ababa/Ethiopia that she took in May 2009:

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Correctly English

Ben Zimmer called my attention to this book cover, via David Adger's Twitter account:

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To all aspiring pet phoneticians out there

Jeroen van de Weijer sent in the following photograph of a veterinary hospital in Shanghai:

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Smartisan T1

Video for a new Chinese electronic watch, submitted by Stephen Hart:


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Anti-mouth-bowls

Jan Söhlke sent in this photograph taken in a shop in Vienna:

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Awesome foods

Felix Sadeli sent in this list of colossal mistranslations of food names. We've already seen several of these and explained a number of them on Language Log:

Here I'll just give brief explanations for four of the droller items in Chinese and Japanese on the list.  Perhaps Language Log readers will be inspired to follow suit for some of the remaining items, especially those in other languages.

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Enter here

From Bob Sanders comes this sign at a burger joint in the Melbourne, Australia airport:

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