HOME > 翻訳 > なるほど!英訳塾(ビギナー編)第十回

なるほど!英訳塾 ~ビギナー編~

タイトル

最近インフルエンザが流行っていますね。今年は抗ウィルス薬が効かない耐性ウィルスも見つかっているようですね。手洗い・うがい・栄養のある食事・十分な睡眠など、よく言われていることですが、やはりこれが風邪予防には効果があるようです。

翻訳者にとっても体調管理は重要です。体調が悪いと集中力や思考力が低下して、翻訳の質や処理量に大きく影響します。特にフリーランス翻訳者にはさまざまな自己管理が求められます。体調管理がしっかりできる翻訳者を目指してくださいね。

それでは、今日のレッスンです。

最初に前回のレッスンの練習問題についての解説です。


A big thank you to readers who wrote in to share their ideas on how the sentence I gave for practice in the last session should be translated. Here is my version: 日本語

(7a) サントリーは来春の実施を検討していた清涼飲料の値上げを見送る。砂糖や容器など原材料の高騰を受けて缶コーヒーなど一部商品を十円値上げする方針だった。

(7b) Suntory has decided to forgo raising the prices of beverages that it has been considering to implement from next spring. It was planning to increase the prices of some products such as can coffee by 10 yen due to price hikes in raw materials such as sugar and containers.

The most important thing is to change the structure of the original Japanese and supply a subject and a main verb. The only candidate for the subject is of course “Suntory”, and since it has been used in the first sentence, “it” or “the company” can be used instead. 日本語

The hint for the main verb comes from “方針”, which may be translated as “plan” or “consider” as a reader has suggested. Another thing to note is that “受けて” in the middle of the sentence should not be translated directly as “receiving”. Besides “due to”, “in response to” is also acceptable.  日本語


Now, the focus this week is on subject or topic noun phrases that are modified by relative clauses. When such noun phrases are translated into English, the head noun gets separated from the main verb by a relative clause. In some cases, this makes the sentence difficult to process. 日本語

(1a) 消費低迷で収益力が低下しているイオンは、三菱商事の国際調達などを活用して経営効率を高める。

(1a) is extracted from the first paragraph of a newspaper article. In (1a), the head noun of the modified noun phrase is marked by a double underline and the relative clause modifying it is marked by a single underline. 日本語

(1b) Aeon, whose profitability has declined due to a slump in consumption, wants to improve its operational efficiency by making use of Mitsubishi’s international procurement network.

 (1b) shows the translation of (1a) with the original structure followed closely. Note that due to the presence of the relative clause, the subject, “Aeon”, and the main verb, “wants”, get separated. 日本語

The relative clause contains new information necessary for understanding the article that has not been mentioned in the preceding context. It is more difficult for readers to process sentences in which the subject gets separated from the main verb by one or more relative clauses. 日本語

(1c) Aeon has suffered a decline in profitability due to a slump in consumption, and wants to improve its operational efficiency by making use of Mitsubishi’s international procurement network.

(1c) is an improved version of (1b) with the relative clause rewritten as a separate sentence. 日本語

(2a) 2000年以来、年間の既存店ベースで前年より減り続けてきたコンビニの売り上げがここにきて上向いている。

(2b) The turnover in convenience stores, which has been declining from the previous year based on the annual number of existing stores since 2000, has been improving recently.

(2c) The turnover in convenience stores has been declining from the previous year based on the annual number of existing stores since 2000. But it is showing a rising trend recently.

(2a) is also taken from a newspaper article. If it is translated directly as shown in (2b), the main noun, “turnover”, gets separated from the main verb, “has been improving”, by a rather long relative clause. The reader has to process and keep a lot of extra information in memory before getting to the main verb. 日本語

If (2b) is split into two sentences as shown in (2c), the reader will have an easier time. 日本語

(3a) 九七年に社長に就任した岡田元也氏は世界最大の小売り、米ウォルマート・ストアーズを見本に業容拡大を目指した。

(3b) Okada Motoya, who took up his appointment as the president in 1997, set his sights on business expansion with the world’s largest retailer, America’s Walmart Stores, as his model.

(3c) When the president of Aeon, Okada Motoya, took up his appointment in 1997, he set his sights on business expansion with the world’s largest retailer, America’s Walmart Stores, as his model.

In (3a), “岡田元也氏” is mentioned for the first time in a newspaper article about Aeon. (3b) is a perfectly grammatical translation that retains the original structure of (3a). However, it sounds rather abrupt to introduce “Okada Motoya” suddenly.日本語

A different version is provided in (3c) with the relative clause changed to an adverbial clause. Note that Okada Motoya’s name is preceded by his title, which makes this sentence fit in more naturally as new information is not introduced abruptly. 日本語

Please be careful when translating relative clauses. Even though the original structure can be reproduced in English, it may not always be contextually appropriate. 日本語


今日のレッスンでは、関係節を使った英訳がいかに読みづらいかについてお話しました。関係節を使うことが悪いということではありません。日本語原文をみて、中心となる名詞を修飾している内容をwhich やwho などの関係代名詞を使って英訳できるな、と思うときはよくあると思います。その際に、主語と動詞があまりにも離れてしまっていると、読み進めていくうちに主語を忘れてしまったり、その間の情報に意識がいってしまい、大切な「何がどうした」の部分をすぐに理解できなくなる場合があります。そういう場合はぜひ、今日ご説明したような方法で英文を作るテクニックを思い出してください。

みなさんからの疑問・質問をお待ちしています。メール こちらまでメールをお送りください。それではまた次回!

  目次へ戻る  

↑Page Top

プロフィール

ンー・ソーキン

ンー・ソーキンさん:Ng Soh King
シンガポール出身。シンガポール大学で日本語を専攻した後、ハワイ、日本、オーストラリアの大学に通い言語学博士号を取得。その間、シンガポール大学の教壇に立ち、日本語や翻訳を教える。2005年よりフリーランス翻訳者として活躍。幅広い分野の翻訳をこなすが、今後、金融・医薬分野での翻訳に力を入れていきたいと希望。香港在住。