Discussion:
To change tense or not change tense, when translating from Latin to English?
(too old to reply)
Horace LaBadie
2018-02-07 03:28:27 UTC
Permalink
Augustine said, “Pray as if everything depended on God, work as if
everything depended on you.”
https://groups.google.com/d/msg/alt.usage.english/ylfQbqKdL6I/QeUt2zV1AwAJ
Sic orate ac si totum a Deo dependeret, et sic laborate ac si totum
dependeret a vobis.
http://www.ewtn.com/v/experts/showmessage print.asp?number=320602&language=en
... but "depended" looks wrong in the translation at both links above. AFAIK,
Australia's Tony Abbot used "depends" which looks correct in English.
It depends on your purpose in making the translation.
António Marques
2018-02-07 11:05:27 UTC
Permalink
Augustine said, Pray as if everything depended on God, work as if
everything depended on you.
https://groups.google.com/d/msg/alt.usage.english/ylfQbqKdL6I/QeUt2zV1AwAJ
Sic orate ac si totum a Deo dependeret, et sic laborate ac si totum dependeret a vobis.
http://www.ewtn.com/v/experts/showmessage_print.asp?number20602&language=en
... but "depended" looks wrong in the translation at both links above. AFAIK,
Australia's Tony Abbot used "depends" which looks correct in English.
It’s an imperfect subjunctive, the English would be ‘would depend’.
‘Depended’ preserves the mood.
Joseph C. Fineman
2018-02-07 22:51:17 UTC
Permalink
Augustine said, “Pray as if everything depended on God, work as if
everything depended on you.”
https://groups.google.com/d/msg/alt.usage.english/ylfQbqKdL6I/QeUt2zV1AwAJ
I say: That comes from this: Sic orate ac si totum a Deo dependeret,
et sic laborate ac si totum dependeret a vobis.
http://www.ewtn.com/v/experts/showmessage_print.asp?number=320602&language=en
... but "depended" looks wrong in the translation at both links above. AFAIK,
Australia's Tony Abbot used "depends" which looks correct in English.
To my (perhaps oldfashioned) taste, that "as if" is short for "as you
would pray/work if" & introduces a contrary-to-fact condition, so
"depended" is natural. However, in many colloquial contexts that is not
a possible interpretation -- in particular, with "It looks as if..." we
usually mean to (weakly) assert rather than deny the following clause,
and so "It looks as if he isn't here" is normal. "It looks as if he
weren't here" is a mixture of registers (and "It looks like he weren't
here" a more grotesque one).

However, by now perhaps most people, including Mr Abbot, do not make the
distinction.
--
--- Joe Fineman ***@verizon.net

||: Eating beef is the second most overrated pleasure in :||
||: America. :||
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