Re: post.prepared for anglican (aka reversible translations)

From: Eric Weiss (
Date: Sun May 18 1997 - 14:33:30 EDT

>Brian E. Wilson (
>Thu, 15 May 1997 07:11:39 +0100

>A translation is reversible. That is to say, if one person translates a

>Greek text into English, and another translates it back into Greek, the

>final result would be the original text.

>A paraphrase is irreversible. If someone paraphrases the Greek text of
>Romans 5.1-5 into English, the resultant English would not translate
>back into the Greek text Paul dictated.

To me, this means that only a literal word-order-for-word-order
interlinear rendering qualifies as a translation. And because Greek
(like English and other languages) has many words with near-synonyms or
which share greatly-overlapping semantic domains with other words, it
would still be impossible to guarantee that two different
back-translators would select identical words and hence come up with
"the [same] original text." I cannot imagine that someone would
seriously be taught or put forth this as the definition (or distinction)
of a "translation" versus a "paraphase". Would Mr. Wilson be kind enough
to cite the source (author, teacher, book, journal) of his definition?

"Eric S. (and Karol-Ann) Weiss"
part-time grad student at The Criswell College
"Send those testimonies!"

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Sat Apr 20 2002 - 15:38:16 EDT