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TRANSFORMATION OF SOME IDIOMS IN THE PROCESS OF TRANSLATING



As has already been pointed out some phraseological expres­sions singled out by the Acad. V. Vinogradov as unities and having mostly a transparent meaning may reflect various national features of the source language. The latter may be either of lingual or extralingual nature, involving the national images, their peculiar pic-turesqueness or means of expression with clear reference to tradi­tions, customs or historical events, geographical position of the source language nation. Such phraseological expressions are often of a sim­ple or composite sentence structure. Being nationally distinct, they can not have in the target language traditionally established equiva­lents or loan variants. As a result, most of them may have more than one translator's version in the target language. It may be either a regular sense-to-sense variant (an interlinear-type translation) or an artistic literary version rendering in which alongside the lexical meaning also the aphoristic nature, the expressiveness, the picturesqueness, the vividness, etc. of the source language phraseologism/idiom.

Taking into account the aims pursued and the contextual envi­ronment of the idiom, there must be acknowledged at least two main levels of translating the national idioms:

1) the level of the interlinear rendering, i.e., sense-to-sense translation only, which is quite sufficient to faithfully express the lexi­cal meaning of most of these phraseologisms/idioms;

2) the literary/literary artistic level at which not only the sense but also the expressiveness, the vividness, the picturesqueness and the apho­ristic nature (if any) of the idioms should possibly be conveyed as well.

Faithful translation of national idioms/phraseologisms is mostly achieved via deliberate transformations of all kinds performed by the translator. The transformations are aimed at making the national images, the sense and structure of these phraseologic expressions easier for the target language readers/listeners to comprehend .Such transformations, therefore, adjust in many a case the source lan­guage idiom as a sense unit to the requirements of the target lan­guage bearers. Here are some examples of translation with the help of transformations of particularly English phraseologisms performed first (1) at the interlinear (sense-to-sense rendering) level and then (2) at the literary/literary artistic level: the wind cannot be prevented from blowing 1. вітрові не перешкодиш віяти; 2. вітрові не скажеш не віяти/дути; вітру не затулиш; he that doesn't respect, isn't respected 1. хто інших не поважає, сам'поваги не має; 2. поважатимеш інших, поважатимуть і тебе; it's an equal failing to trust everybody and to trust nobody 1. однакова вада - довіряти всім і не довіряти нікому; 2. довіряти кожному і не довіряти нікому - однакова вада; the pleasures of the mighty are the tears of the poor 1. розваги всесильних/ багатих - то сльози бідних/ знедолених; 2. вельможні скачуть - убогі плачуть; що панські жарти, то людські сльози; they must hunger in winter that will not work in summer 1. той голодує взимку, хто не працює влітку; 2. шукаєш влітку холодок - знайдеш узимку голод, or: лежатимеш на печі - не їстимеш калачі.



No need to emphasize that some successful literary artistic translations/variants of specifically national idioms may in the end become regular translation loans of the target language.1

Transformations become absolutely inevitable when the Eng­lish phraseologisms or mots contain a passive voice structure, the introductory it/there, or some other analytical constructions, as for instance, those with the auxiliary verbs (do, does, etc.). Cf.: there is no love lost between them вони недолюблюють одне одного/глек розбили; Does your mother know you are out? Молоко на губах ще не висохло/ще не доріс. Can the leopard change his spots? Горбатого могила виправить. Though sometimes transformations may become necessary to make the denotative and connotative meaning of idioms/phraseologisms easier for the target language bearers to comprehend. Thus, neither the sense-to-sense nor the literary variant of the proverb the moon is not seen when the sun shines (місяця не видно, коли світить сонце/сяє сонце - місяця не видно) can fully express its connotative (and denotative) mean­ing when the proverb stands for somebody or something eclipsing with his or its importance (fame, size, etc.) somebody or something meant by the «moon». All in all, however, there are few such sen­tence-type phraseological expressions which need some additional explication in Ukrainian. More often the content of the kind of phraseologisms/idioms is clear already at language level, i.e., out of context, which enables their literary translation. This can be observed from a few more examples below: what matters to a blind man that his father could see що з того сліпому, що його батько був зрячим; it is too late to shut the stable door when the horse is stolen пізно зачиняти конюшню, коли коня вкрали; when two ride on one horse

1 See more about translation loans in: Зорівчак Р.П. Фразеологічна одиниця як перекладацька категорія. -Львів: «Вища шк.» Вид-во при Львівському ун-ті, 1983.

one must sit behind коли двоє їдуть на одному коні, комусь/одному з них сидіти/їхати ззаду/двоє не можуть сидіти спереду..





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