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When the English and Russian functional sentence perspectives do not coincide, a word order change is applied in translation.

Thus, the rhematic subject in English usually takes the initial position, whereas in Russian it should be placed at the end of the sentence: A faint perfume of jasmine came through the open window. (O.Wilde) – Сквозь открытое окно доносился легкий аромат жасмина. A waitress came to their table. – К их столику подошла официантка.

This transformation is evident in comparing the structures with the subjects introduced by the definite and indefinite articles. A sentence that has the definite article with the subject has the same word order: The woman entered the house. – Женщина вошла в дом. On the other hand, a word order change takes place in a similar sentence if its subject is determined by the indefinite article: A woman entered the house. – В дом вошла женщина.

To emphasize the rhematic subject of the sentence, the construction it is … that (who) can be used in English. For example, It is not by means of any tricks or devices that the remarkable effect of Milton’s verse is produced. – Удивительный эффект стихов Мильтона объясняется вовсе не какими-то особыми ухищрениями.143 The rhematic component is positioned at the end of the Russian sentence.Another example: It was the Russian-born American physicist Vladimir Zworykin who made the first electronic television in the 1920s. – Именно Владимир Зворыкин, американский физик русского происхождения, создал электронный телевизор в 20-х годах XX столетия. In Russian, the emphasis on the semantic center of the sentence is made either with the help of the intensifier (именно), or else the meaning can be rendered through a change of word order: Электронный телевизор в 20-х годах XX столетия создал Владимир Зворыкин, американский физик русского происхождения.

Thematic components in Russian are shifted to the initial position, which often happens with objects and adverbial modifiers: It was early for that.Для этого еще было рано. A typical case is the sentence introduced by there is/are. Here the subject is rhematic and the adverbial modifier of place is thematic. Therefore, the construction is normally translated into Russian with the adverbial in the initial position: There is a book on the table. – На столе лежит книга. Compare this sentence with one of a thematic subject: The book is on the table. – Книга лежит на столе. If there is no adverbial modifier of place in the English sentence (to start the translation), the sentence beginning with there is is rendered in Russian by the verb существует: There are three kinds of solid body. – Существует три вида твердого тела.

Adverbial modifiers of place and time are usually mirrored in translation. Being thematic, they are positioned in the beginning of the Russian sentence, and in English they take the final position: Вчера в Москве состоялась встреча президента России с президентом Франции. – A meeting of the Russian president and the French president was held in Moscow yesterday.

A rhematic component expressing the agent of the action in the passive construction cannot be placed as the initial subject of the translated sentence: The telephone was invented by A. Bell. corresponds to Телефон изобрел А. Белл. (not to А. Белл изобрел телефон.)


Sentence partitioning means substituting a complex or compound sentence with several simple ones, or a simple sentence with a complex one, containing some clauses:







Sentence integration is the opposite transformation – substituting several simple sentences with a complex/compound one, or a complex sentence with a simple one.

These transformations can occur for the following reasons:

1) Grammar structure differences between the source language and the target language. For example, there are some special constructions in English that do not exist in Russian. They are translated by a complex sentence (the Complex Object, Complex Subject, Absolute constructions, etc.).

I want you to speak English fluently.Я хочу, чтобы вы бегло говорили по-английски.

They sat down to supper, Manson still talking cheerfully. – Они сели ужинать, а Мэнсон все еще оживленно говорил.

Sentence integration is necessary when the English sentence starts with the conjunctions or, nor, but, for, since the beginning of this type is alien to Russian written speech: Man is the only animal that blushes. Or needs to. (Shaw) – Человек –единственное существо, которое краснеет или которому надо бы краснеть.

2) Semantics.If two or more separate ideas are linked together in the source text (which sometime may reveal bad style), a translator can partition them. For example,

Мы получили очень краткую информацию о Вашем фонде, поэтому не можем точно определиться с порядком направления вам заявок и направляем вам это письмо. – We have received very brief information about your Fund. Therefore, we do not know exactly the requirements for application. That is why we send you this letter.

Sentence integration can take place because of the close semantic bonds between the sentences. For instance, Это хозяйство занимается выращиванием овощей и зерна, имеет молочное стадо. Этой деятельностью хозяйство занимается длительный период времени. – This farm has been growing vegetables and grains and breeding dairy herd for a long period of time.

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