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LINGUIST List 22.291

Mon Jan 17 2011

Qs: Bible Translations: English and Russian

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        1.     Alla Sobirova , Bible Translations: English and Russian

Message 1: Bible Translations: English and Russian
Date: 02-Jan-2011
From: Alla Sobirova <gold_allarambler.ru>
Subject: Bible Translations: English and Russian
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My name is Alla Sobirova. I am doing the research on comparison of
Bible translations, Russian and English languages, for my PhD. First, I
want to show what differences appeared in the Bible text in English and
Russian translations in comparison with Hebrew text. So I am looking
for words which were deleted (or left implicit), words which were added
(perhaps the concept was implicit in the original, but there was no word
in the original related to that word) and then words which were in some
way modified (as to the form of the word). For example, singulars
became plurals, present tense, past tense, etc.

I would really appreciate if somebody can give me recommendation on
the topic in both languages. For English language I use the New
International Version (NIV), New American Standard Bible (NASB),
Amplified Bible, and King James Version (KJV). For Russian language I
have only one-Sinod Translation. I know there are some more but I
could not find them yet. I would be thankful if somebody could help with
that too.

Here is the example of what I want to do. I borrowed it from a good
resource that I found. It's David Bell's work about Comparative
Analyses of English Bible translations. I want to do it into 2 languages.

"Genesis 2:4-7 Verse four begins with a main construct-absolute
phrase with an elliptical verb followed by two subordinate phrases. The
first subordinate verb is a niphil (passive) and the second is qal
(active). The King James Version (KJV), American Standard Version
(ASV), Revised Standard Version (RSV), New American Standard Bible
(NASB), and Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) all translate with
a main clause followed by an adverbial, passive clause and then a
dependent, active clause. The Today's English Version (TEV)
combines the two phrases into one. The Hebrew separates this verse
from the next, but all of the modern translations (TEV, New English
Bible (NEB), NIV, New Jerusalem Bible (NJB) and Message Bible
(MSG)) as well as the RSV divide the verse in the middle and then
connect the second half with the following verse. MSG, however, has
the most radical restructuring. It takes the verb from the second
subordinate phrase with the first and vice versa. The preposition in
(2:4.5a) is substituted by how and the verb "made" (2:4.7) becomes

I need information about methods of used when researching such topic
and maybe somebody can help directly with advice.

Thank you,
Alla Sobirova

David B. Bell (2005) A Comparative Analysis of Formal Shifts in English
Bible Translations (in pdf.)

Linguistic Field(s): Translation

Subject Language(s): English (eng)
                            Russian (rus)

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