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Re: I'm all in favour of cheating!

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  • llama_nom
    ... she meant protestant. Ha, ha, I don t have any emoticon to express how much that made me laugh! You ll just have to imagine it. Once I was just getting
    Message 1 of 7 , Mar 12, 2006
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      --- In norse_course@yahoogroups.com, "Patricia"
      <originalpatricia@...> wrote:
      >
      > as for Rev. Mom, she told me I was a prodigy and I cried thinking
      she meant protestant.


      Ha, ha, I don't have any emoticon to express how much that made me
      laugh! You'll just have to imagine it. Once I was just getting to
      the bottom of a cup of chocolate and my grandad asked, "Are you
      finished yet?" And I thought he said, "Are you frightened yet?"
      And I got spooked by my own distorted chocolate-dreg reflection. My
      childhood delusions over stuff people say in Star Wars are legendary.



      > and sometimes the accented letters throw me off course


      No shame there; they threw off the medieval scribes too.



      > In fact I am copying up your letter and keeping it by as "back
      up" - a remedy against despondency and Dictionary Chewing - I
      realise "they cannot touch you for it" but it is a very bad habit to
      get into Gordon tastes more of ink than anything else



      They can probably put me under house arrest though now, for
      Glorification of Dictionary Chewing, or words or unconcious gestures
      which could be interpreted as lending intangible support to someone
      in this, or any other country (real or fictional), who might have
      chewed, or dreamt of chewing, a dictionary, lexicon or other
      vocabulary item. I'm more of a book-sniffer myself. But I have to
      remember not to when reading Wright's Gothic Grammar, cos I think
      the previous owner smoked tobacco.
    • AThompson
      LN, Patricia Don t misunderstand me. I agree with everything LN says and use all LN s suggested methods at various times, both for learning the language and
      Message 2 of 7 , Mar 14, 2006
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        LN, Patricia

        Don't misunderstand me. I agree with everything LN says and use all LN's suggested methods at various times, both for learning the language and for preparing translations. The specific approaches to studying and translating which I suggested were not meant as single approaches for all one's language study activities. They were only intended as an approach for our current Hrafnkel translation "class" in the Norse Course group. And I didn't necessarily mean for people to try to translate the whole passage on their own before referring to the translation - it could just as easily be sentence by sentence. My suggestion was simply to use this particular "class" for making a genuine attempt at recognising the grammatical structure of the sentences on your own first - for example training yourself to recognise noun cases and verb conjugations - rather than having the solution simply presented to you by referring to another translation first. Similarly, I was suggesting that you present your translations to this group, as a minimum, in a way that demonstrates the extent to which you have understood the grammar. I am not suggesting that you should not also attempt a literary translation as well. But I am not able to assess, and therefore comment on, your exact understanding of the grammar of a particular sentence if, for example, your translation is in the past tense when the original was in the present. I cannot know from this whether you have done this for stylistic reasons or because you didn't recognise that the verb in the original text was in the present tense. The reason my translations in this "class" are so literal is purely to indicate, as best I can, the grammar of the original.

        I think we´ve had this discussion before:)

        And don't give up.

        Kveðja
        Alan

        -----Original Message-----
        From: norse_course@yahoogroups.com [mailto:norse_course@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of llama_nom
        Sent: Monday, 13 March 2006 1:17 AM
        To: norse_course@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [norse_course] I'm all in favour of cheating!


        It's more efficient. If there's something I don't understand and I
        have a translation handy, I think it's good to look it up as quickly
        as possible. Just like looking a word up in a dictionary or
        glossary. That way, you're more likely to remember the meaning,
        when you think back to the occasion, rather than just remembering
        your own bafflement and puzzled guesses. In fact, I reckon it's a
        good excercise to read a text with a translation to hand for
        constant comparison. It allows you to read more and faster, and
        thus get more experience of the language itself, as opposed to
        experience of head-scratching and flicking through dictionaries.
        Admittedly, having a niggly obsessive mind, as I suspect some of you
        lot do too, I always end up checking every other word in
        dictionaries and other texts where possible anyway--which defeats
        the principle a bit (oh well). I suppose different methods work for
        different people, and if you need a stronger motivation to niggle
        over the little details, I guess it might be better to lock away the
        translations while working on a passage. But if you tend to be
        overly obsessive, it's good to have a philosophy to counter that, or
        at least water it down a bit.

        But then I do also like the challenge of tackling something that I
        haven't got a translation for. And, of course, if I still can't
        make sense of the grammar after seeing it in a translation, maybe
        because it's an idiomatic phrase that's been translated loosely,
        then that requires further investigation. Some things I just have
        to make a note of in the sections of my notebook devoted to
        mysteries! To be dealt with, or asked about, later... The
        important thing is not to get disheatened or bogged down. Further
        reading often clarifies something, when you come across a similar
        phrase in a different context.

        It's nice, and helps to avoid Old Norse Burn-Out, to alternate
        between various approaches, some more labour intensive than others,
        maybe if I'm tired, just reading to get as much sense as possible
        without worrying about everything; but when I'm more alert and
        energetic, making a proper translation of something as best I can.
        And for the days when that gets too easy, you can always go and
        squint at wormeaten parchments on Saganet [
        http://saga.library.cornell.edu/ ]. They have some printed books
        too though.

        On literalness, I agree that it's important to understand first how
        a sentence works grammatically in all its finer points. But I also
        think it's just as important to have a clear idea of how it might be
        expressed in idiomatic English. A perfectly literal translation--if
        such a thing is possible--can sometimes be misleading, on its own,
        or not very meaningful. I don't want to suggest that Alan goes to
        that extreme, and he also guards against that danger by adding
        helpful notes, where the literal meaning doesn't quite convey the
        sense in English. My point is just that thinking of a good natural
        way to put a sentence in English is as much a part of translation as
        figuring out the grammatical relations of the words in the
        original. The aesthetics is something else again, but it interests
        me too (after all, these are works of literature), and I don't think
        that Patricia's comments about this third level of translation, the
        artistic aspect of it, are at all off topic.

        > To be sure I am finding that heavy going and now wonder if I have
        bitten off a trifle more than I can chew, I was ordering a copy of
        the Cleasby-Vigfusson Dictionary hoping that would help,

        Tsk, chewing dictionaries is a very bad sign though. Maybe as part
        of a balenced diet, but still... Mind you, you're at an advantage
        now that the online edition is out of action again.





        --- In norse_course@yahoogroups.com, "Patricia"
        <originalpatricia@...> wrote:
        >
        > Thank you Alan, I fear my guesses are more "otherwise" than
        educated hence my use of inverted commas in my original translation.
        >
        > I do not copy from an existing translation - smacks of cheating to
        me, besides it would show up if I did that, my guesses are clearly
        not good, the reason being that I am still struggling with actually
        learning the language from the three (Barnes & Faulkes) Books that I
        have.
        >
        > To be sure I am finding that heavy going and now wonder if I have
        bitten off a trifle more than I can chew, I was ordering a copy of
        the Cleasby-Vigfusson Dictionary hoping that would help, best cancel
        that it strikes me as unnecessary expense now, and I can now see
        that I have clearly had the wrong approach to this learning process
        from the beginning. I can see that keeping the whole thing as
        literal as possible would obviously be the best now, and I fully
        appreciate your pointing that out.
        >
        > Understanding the grammar of a Language that is no longer spoken
        is a difficulty, at least with my other languages I have the
        opportunity of e.mailing - telephoning or dropping by at a Friends
        house if I get stuck on my reading
        >
        > Thank you for this particular comment, I wonder if it would be
        better to "take a break" and continue to study my books - for a
        while anyway - for on a couple of points I have noticed where you
        have underlined - I have made a "typo" and this has altered the
        sense of the thing - so much for driving myself to complete a
        translation when "dog" tired
        >
        > Advice from anyone who cares to offer it will be much appreciated,
        I am fully aware of "driving" myself too much, and causing myself
        and the group - embarrassment or whatever
        >
        > Kveðª¡
        >
        > Patricia
        >
        > Alan's comments were -
        >
        > Comments below. What you include in your translation, 'educated'
        or otherwise, is entirely up to you. This purpose of the activity is
        to assist you in learning. It is not a test. If you´ve guessed a
        single word or phrase or copied a whole sentence from an existing
        translation without fully understanding the sentence makes
        absolutely no difference to me; but, personally, I would see little
        benefit to yourself from a learning perspective in doing so. If you
        are using an existing translation to assist you, I would suggest not
        using it until after you have tried to work out the whole text on
        your own first, then refer to the translation to validate your own
        translation and for guidance on the parts you couldn´t make sense
        of, but only include in your submitted work what you have been able
        to work out and make some sense of. I suggest you always keep your
        submitted translation as literal as possible (even at the expense of
        gracefulness of expression) because that way I can be more certain
        as to whether you have understood the grammar.
        >
        >
        >
        > Kve𪡊>
        > Alan
        >







        A Norse funny farm, overrun by smart people.

        Homepage: http://www.hi.is/~haukurth/norse/

        To escape from this funny farm try rattling off an e-mail to:

        norse_course-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
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      • Patricia
        Well it s like I may have said before Alan - I had the same trouble with Latin when I was at College -and I am grateful for this sterling opportunity to
        Message 3 of 7 , Mar 14, 2006
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          Well it's like I may have said before Alan  -  I had the same trouble with Latin when I was at College -and I am grateful for this  sterling opportunity to learn, but there are times when  I fall in to the pit of "trying to make it sound nice", and that is not good enough, I believe you are definitely right in viewing the Literal  Translation as the one best suited to us now and I am certainly going to continue to give it my best shot - anything less than that would not be me, and no I shall not be giving up, not giving up the course, and also I'm afraid not giving up driving myself - it is my way
          Very many thanks for your communication,
          and for understanding
          Kveðja
          Patricia
           
           
           
           
           
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: AThompson
          Sent: Tuesday, March 14, 2006 9:55 AM
          Subject: RE: [norse_course] I'm all in favour of cheating!

          LN, Patricia

          Don't misunderstand me. I agree with everything LN says and use all LN's suggested methods at various times, both for learning the language and for preparing translations. The specific approaches to studying and translating which I suggested were not meant as single approaches for all one's language study activities. They were only intended as an approach for our current Hrafnkel translation "class" in the Norse Course group. And I didn't necessarily mean for people to try to translate the whole passage on their own before referring to the translation - it could just as easily be sentence by sentence. My suggestion was simply to use this particular "class" for making a genuine attempt at recognising the grammatical structure of the sentences on your own first - for example training yourself to recognise noun cases and verb conjugations - rather than having the solution simply presented to you by referring to another translation first. Similarly, I was suggesting that you present your translations to this group, as a minimum, in a way that demonstrates the extent to which you have understood the grammar. I am not suggesting that you should not also attempt a literary translation as well. But I am not able to assess, and therefore comment on, your exact understanding of the grammar of a particular sentence if, for example, your translation is in the past tense when the original was in the present. I cannot know from this whether you have done this for stylistic reasons or because you didn't recognise that the verb in the original text was in the present tense. The reason my translations in this "class" are so literal is purely to indicate, as best I can, the grammar of the original.

          I think we´ve had this discussion before:)

          And don't give up.

          Kveðja
          Alan

          -----Original Message-----
          From: norse_course@yahoogroups.com [mailto:norse_course@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of llama_nom
          Sent: Monday, 13 March 2006 1:17 AM
          To: norse_course@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [norse_course] I'm all in favour of cheating!


          It's more efficient.  If there's something I don't understand and I
          have a translation handy, I think it's good to look it up as quickly
          as possible.  Just like looking a word up in a dictionary or
          glossary.  That way, you're more likely to remember the meaning,
          when you think back to the occasion, rather than just remembering
          your own bafflement and puzzled guesses.  In fact, I reckon it's a
          good excercise to read a text with a translation to hand for
          constant comparison.  It allows you to read more and faster, and
          thus get more experience of the language itself, as opposed to
          experience of head-scratching and flicking through dictionaries. 
          Admittedly, having a niggly obsessive mind, as I suspect some of you
          lot do too, I always end up checking every other word in
          dictionaries and other texts where possible anyway--which defeats
          the principle a bit (oh well).  I suppose different methods work for
          different people, and if you need a stronger motivation to niggle
          over the little details, I guess it might be better to lock away the
          translations while working on a passage.  But if you tend to be
          overly obsessive, it's good to have a philosophy to counter that, or
          at least water it down a bit.

          But then I do also like the challenge of tackling something that I
          haven't got a translation for.  And, of course, if I still can't
          make sense of the grammar after seeing it in a translation, maybe
          because it's an idiomatic phrase that's been translated loosely,
          then that requires further investigation.  Some things I just have
          to make a note of in the sections of my notebook devoted to
          mysteries!  To be dealt with, or asked about, later...  The
          important thing is not to get disheatened or bogged down.  Further
          reading often clarifies something, when you come across a similar
          phrase in a different context.

          It's nice, and helps to avoid Old Norse Burn-Out, to alternate
          between various approaches, some more labour intensive than others,
          maybe if I'm tired, just reading to get as much sense as possible
          without worrying about everything; but when I'm more alert and
          energetic, making a proper translation of something as best I can. 
          And for the days when that gets too easy, you can always go and
          squint at wormeaten parchments on Saganet [
          http://saga.library.cornell.edu/ ].  They have some printed books
          too though.

          On literalness, I agree that it's important to understand first how
          a sentence works grammatically in all its finer points.  But I also
          think it's just as important to have a clear idea of how it might be
          expressed in idiomatic English.  A perfectly literal translation--if
          such a thing is possible--can sometimes be misleading, on its own,
          or not very meaningful.  I don't want to suggest that Alan goes to
          that extreme, and he also guards against that danger by adding
          helpful notes, where the literal meaning doesn't quite convey the
          sense in English.  My point is just that thinking of a good natural
          way to put a sentence in English is as much a part of translation as
          figuring out the grammatical relations of the words in the
          original.  The aesthetics is something else again, but it interests
          me too (after all, these are works of literature), and I don't think
          that Patricia's comments about this third level of translation, the
          artistic aspect of it, are at all off topic.

          > To be sure I am finding that heavy going and now wonder if I have
          bitten off a trifle more than I can chew, I was ordering a copy of
          the Cleasby-Vigfusson Dictionary hoping that would help,

          Tsk, chewing dictionaries is a very bad sign though.  Maybe as part
          of a balenced diet, but still...  Mind you, you're at an advantage
          now that the online edition is out of action again.





          --- In norse_course@yahoogroups.com, "Patricia"
          <originalpatricia@...> wrote:
          >
          > Thank you Alan, I fear my guesses are more "otherwise" than
          educated hence my use of inverted commas in my original translation.
          >
          > I do not copy from an existing translation - smacks of cheating to
          me, besides it would show up if I did that, my guesses are clearly
          not good, the reason being that I am still struggling with actually
          learning the language from the three (Barnes & Faulkes) Books that I
          have.
          >
          > To be sure I am finding that heavy going and now wonder if I have
          bitten off a trifle more than I can chew, I was ordering a copy of
          the Cleasby-Vigfusson Dictionary hoping that would help, best cancel
          that it strikes me as unnecessary expense now, and I can now see
          that I have clearly had the wrong approach to this learning process
          from the beginning. I can see that keeping the whole thing as
          literal as possible would obviously be the best now, and I fully
          appreciate your pointing that out.
          >
          > Understanding the grammar of a Language that is no longer spoken
          is a difficulty, at least with my other languages I have the
          opportunity of e.mailing - telephoning or dropping by at a Friends
          house if I get stuck on my reading
          >
          > Thank you for this particular comment, I wonder if it would be
          better to "take a break" and continue to study my books - for a
          while anyway - for on a couple of points I have noticed where you
          have underlined - I have made a "typo" and this has altered the
          sense of the thing - so much for driving myself to complete a
          translation when "dog" tired
          >
          > Advice from anyone who cares to offer it will be much appreciated,
          I am fully aware of "driving" myself too much, and causing myself
          and the group - embarrassment or whatever
          >
          > Kveðª¡
          >
          > Patricia
          >
          > Alan's comments were - 
          >
          > Comments below. What you include in your translation, 'educated'
          or otherwise, is entirely up to you. This purpose of the activity is
          to assist you in learning. It is not a test. If you´ve guessed a
          single word or phrase or copied a whole sentence from an existing
          translation without fully understanding the sentence makes
          absolutely no difference to me; but, personally, I would see little
          benefit to yourself from a learning perspective in doing so. If you
          are using an existing translation to assist you, I would suggest not
          using it until after you have tried to work out the whole text on
          your own first, then refer to the translation to validate your own
          translation and for guidance on the parts you couldn´t make sense
          of, but only include in your submitted work what you have been able
          to work out and make some sense of. I suggest you always keep your
          submitted translation as literal as possible (even at the expense of
          gracefulness of expression) because that way I can be more certain
          as to whether you have understood the grammar.
          >

          >
          > Kve𪡊>
          > Alan
          >







          A Norse funny farm, overrun by smart people.

          Homepage: http://www.hi.is/~haukurth/norse/

          To escape from this funny farm try rattling off an e-mail to:

          norse_course-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          Yahoo! Groups Links








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        • llama_nom
          Good points, Alan. Makes excellent sense. ... all LN s suggested methods at various times, both for learning the language and for preparing translations. The
          Message 4 of 7 , Mar 14, 2006
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            Good points, Alan. Makes excellent sense.



            --- In norse_course@yahoogroups.com, "AThompson" <athompso@...>
            wrote:
            >
            > LN, Patricia
            >
            > Don't misunderstand me. I agree with everything LN says and use
            all LN's suggested methods at various times, both for learning the
            language and for preparing translations. The specific approaches to
            studying and translating which I suggested were not meant as single
            approaches for all one's language study activities. They were only
            intended as an approach for our current Hrafnkel translation "class"
            in the Norse Course group. And I didn't necessarily mean for people
            to try to translate the whole passage on their own before referring
            to the translation - it could just as easily be sentence by
            sentence. My suggestion was simply to use this particular "class"
            for making a genuine attempt at recognising the grammatical
            structure of the sentences on your own first - for example training
            yourself to recognise noun cases and verb conjugations - rather than
            having the solution simply presented to you by referring to another
            translation first. Similarly, I was suggesting that you present your
            translations to this group, as a minimum, in a way that demonstrates
            the extent to which you have understood the grammar. I am not
            suggesting that you should not also attempt a literary translation
            as well. But I am not able to assess, and therefore comment on, your
            exact understanding of the grammar of a particular sentence if, for
            example, your translation is in the past tense when the original was
            in the present. I cannot know from this whether you have done this
            for stylistic reasons or because you didn't recognise that the verb
            in the original text was in the present tense. The reason my
            translations in this "class" are so literal is purely to indicate,
            as best I can, the grammar of the original.
            >
            > I think we´ve had this discussion before:)
            >
            > And don't give up.
            >
            > Kveðja
            > Alan
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