Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [GTh] An Interesting GThomas "Link"

Expand Messages
  • Michael Grondin
    ... I took a look at this site, Rick, and as you know, I m sure, the usefulness of indices of English translations of any text is severely limited by the fact
    Message 1 of 4 , May 5, 2001
    • 0 Attachment
      Rick Hubbard wrote:
      >Those who are interested may find the following link useful:
      >http://www.intratext.com/X/ENG0103.htm

      I took a look at this site, Rick, and as you know, I'm sure, the usefulness
      of indices of English translations of any text is severely limited by the
      fact that translators almost never translate the same source-language word
      or phrase consistently thruout the translated text. Also, they often use
      the same English word to translate different source-language words in
      different contexts. This leads to basically unreliable results from this or
      any index/search function that transverses English translations. What would
      make such functions basically reliable, I think, is either to index the
      source language rather than the translation, or to use a certain kind of
      English translation wherein each unique source-language word or phrase is
      translated with a unique English word or phrase. Such translations exist,
      but haven't enjoyed much popularity. Having tried to do this myself with my
      own translation of Thomas, I know that it isn't easy, and that the
      end-result is simply not as satisfying as a free-form translation. But the
      other option (taking some account of the source-language) has an even
      bigger problem - namely, how to do it?

      Given these remarks on the unreliability of searches of English
      translations, someone may think to ask, "But didn't Dave Hindley just do a
      search for the English phrase 'Son of Man' in a translation of Justin's
      works? And didn't you rely on those results?" Quite true (he admits
      sheepishly), and that points up the problem, since Dave's search did indeed
      give me a false sense of security. Fortunately, I only had a limited object
      in mind - to show that Justin used the phrase at least once. Also
      fortunately, the phrase in question was translated in the expected way. But
      if I did a search of a politically-correct translation of Justin, wherein
      'son of man' was rendered as 'child of humanity', I'd never find what I was
      looking for, and I might well erroneously conclude that Justin was
      unfamiliar with the term. Scary. The technology is trustworthy within its
      limits, but those limits can be so easily overlooked.

      Regards,
      Mike
    • Rick Hubbard
      Mike, I am in full agreement with your assessment of the value of indices and concordances of English translations (on the intratext site and elsewhere). What
      Message 2 of 4 , May 6, 2001
      • 0 Attachment
        Mike, I am in full agreement with your assessment of the value of indices
        and concordances of English translations (on the intratext site and
        elsewhere). What I found much more interesting on this particular site,
        however, was the construction of the "author's" canonical parallels (option
        4 at the root page). Its my fault, I suppose, for not calling attention to
        that in the first place.

        At the same time, your criticism of the limitations of such search methods
        points directly at a solution (although you don't exactly spell it out).
        That solution would be to adopt the "technology" of English language
        searches to original languages such a Coptic, Greek and Hebrew. The sticky
        issue that requires compatible fonts for server (web-page) and client
        (web-browser) are still problematic, but I suspect as the Unicode standards
        continue to be refined, and as new Active Server Page (asp) capabilities
        evolve, such a task will be fairly easy to accomplish.

        Sound like this would be a good spare time project for you, Mike.

        Rick Hubbard
        Humble Maine Woodsman
      • David C. Hindley
        Mike, ... Justin used the phrase at least once. Also fortunately, the phrase in question was translated in the expected way.
        Message 3 of 4 , May 6, 2001
        • 0 Attachment
          Mike,

          >>Fortunately, I only had a limited object in mind - to show that
          Justin used the phrase at least once. Also fortunately, the phrase in
          question was translated in the expected way.<<

          Yes, the same problem we experience when using an English concordance
          based on the KJV when we are normally reading the RSV or NRSV, etc.
          This is, I think, the reason for the popularity of Strongs Numbers as
          a tool among English-only readers.

          It gets worse when we consider that advances in our understanding of
          the texts means that the different translations, made over time, may
          leave out verses contained in the others, etc. Strongs, I think, is
          keyed to the KJV (I don't own a copy, preferring Youngs Analytical
          Concordance when I have recourse to use one). Very messy stuff, and
          Strongs cannot help with problems like this.

          Young's, incidentally, has a section of the concordance dedicated to
          showing all the English words used to render each Hebrew and Greek
          (according to their lexical form, and ignoring common verbs or
          particles, etc.). As a result, if you know the lexical form of a
          Hebrew or Greek word, you can find the English renderings, and from
          that look up each English word in the concordance proper. Kind of a
          kludgey way to do it, but it works.

          The GoT, though, is not an excessively long document. I suppose that a
          crafty program developer could find a way to create a database program
          that could make just such a search (going either direction if set up
          right) much easier. <hint, hint>

          Regards,

          Dave Hindley
          Cleveland, Ohio, USA
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.