ЗНАЕТЕ ЛИ ВЫ?

Ways of Conveying the Meanings of Polysemantic Language Units



Unlike words with evaluative and other connotation, the denotative meaning of a bulk of words can be identified at the level of word-combinations or sentences only. These words constitute a considerable part of present-day English lexicon and are referred to as polysemantic words. For example, the denotative meanings of the verb (or noun) part can be fully displayed in the word-combinations like: to part the fighting cocks, to part company with somebody, to part one's hair, to take part in something, the sixth part of the melon, to have a small part in the event, etc.

Sometimes it may be difficult to identify without larger context the proper meaning even of such a simple polysemantic word as your, which can be in Ukrainian either ваш, ваша, ваші/твій, твоя, твоє, твої or свій, своя, своє, свої respectively. The proper meaning of many other polysemantic words can be realized


already at word-combination level. This can be seen, for example, from the translation of the verbs to break and to comein the following sentences:

He shouldn't be surprised if Він не здивувався б, коли б

they began to break the windows, вони почали бити вікна.
(Galsworthy)

Bossiney broke the silence. Боссіні порушив мовчанку. (Ibid.)

If Irene broke such laws what Якщо Айрін порушила такі

does it matter? (Ibid.) закони, то що це означає?

When the evening came Car- Коли настав вечір, Керрі

rie hurried eagerly away, поспішила хутенько зник-

(T. Dreiser) нути.

«But don 'tcome near the wa- «Але не підходь близько/не

ter, or else you may be attacked наближайся до води, бо на

by sharks. (J.AIdridge) тебе можуть напасти акули.»

Stilll other meanings of these and other verbs can be realized and consequently faithfully rendered into the target language only at sentence level as in the following examples: The first prize came to me. and the 2nd and the 3rd went to students of the Stanford and Berkely Universities. (J.London) Перша премія дісталась мені, а другу й третю одержали студенти Стенфордського і Берклійського університетів. But being very lonely I read everything that came my way. (Ibid.) Але будучи самотнім/нудьгуючи на самоті, я читав усе, що потрапляло мені до рук.

The verb come has some quite different realizations in set/idiomatic expressions, cf.: to come under one's eye/notice -привернути до себе увагу; to come under one's thumb -викликати підозру; to come under the yoke - примиритися з поразкою (вгнути голову); to come unstuck-провалитися, піти прахом; сотеwhat may-що буде, те буде; to come Yorkshire over one - обдурити, обманути когось.

Some meanings of polysemantic verbs and other parts of speech are not quite easy to identify even at sentence level, as can be seen from the examples below:

«Shall I take you round the «Може, сер, я пошлю кухаря house, sir, while I send the cook повідомити його про це. доки я tQ_break it to him?» (Galsworthy) показуватиму вам будинок?»


Крістінбула четвертою за столом. ... коли б не якась копійка у моєї дружини, я не міг би стільки терти лямку (не протяг би, не витримав би так довго).

Christine made a fourth at the table. (Cronin)

... if it had not been for my wife having a little money of her own, I couldn't have carried on as I have done. (J.Priestley)

Translation of polysemantic words may often require a deep insight into content of a part or of the whole passage/text comprising some sentences. This can be partly seen from the meanings of the nouns stuff and run in the sentences below:

«But isn't there time before «Та невже у тебе не буде
your train to get all your stuff to- часу до відходу поїзда зібрати
gether?» (M. Wilson) всі свої манатки/речі?»

All that kind of antiwar talk you Усі ці патякання проти
hear nowadays from your fellows війни, які чуєш серед молоді, -
is the worst kind of subversive та це ж найгіршого штибу
stuff. (Ibid.) підривна діяльність.

Since it is always the concrete context that predetermines the real meaning of a polysemantic word, the translator has to study first of all the original passage/text thoroughly and only then suggest an equivalent which would fit in for the translation:

менший, ніж 1929 року, адже он які події розгортаються в Европі.

Now, of course, there was as Зараз, звичайно, роботи much business in machine tools вистачає, на станки попит не at least as there had been in 1929, what with this European stuff going on. (M.Wilson)

Ну а як воно покаже себе на важкому станку? Адже нас саме важкі станки цікавлять.

But what happens when he gets to the heavy stuff? And it's the heavy stuff we're interested.

(Ibid.) «Oh, stuff it up your nose!» one of the companions said. (D.Carter) «Then I'll finish up the grids and get ready for the run just as I was going to do.» (Ibid.) «... I am going to give young Dr.Anthony Haviland the run of his goddamn life.» (Ibid.)

«Заткни пельку/замовкни!» -гримнув один із тієї компанії.

«Тоді я закінчу з захисними сітками і приготую їх до досліду, який я саме й мав намір проводити...»

«... Я цьому молодому докторові Ентоні Гевіленду дам такої нагінки. що він усе життя пам'ятатиме.»


Lately, we've had a run of Останнім часом ми
shocking bad luck at the Depart- отримали кілька відмов у
ment. (Cronin) міністерстві.

Their stores were already run- У них уже закінчувалися
ning low.
(Stevenson) (завершувалися) запаси

продуктів.

«They seem to be running «Вони, здається, готують
wild». (J.AIdridge) бунт» (захопити владу)

It would be wrong to assume that only polysemantic notionals can realize their actual meanings at the level of word-combinations and sentences. Some meanings of functionals can also be identified only at the level of sentences or external word-groups. Among these may be even the meanings of conjunctions as, for example, that of and in the following sentence: The poem was long and he could not learn it by heart. Here and may have either the meaning of the coordinate conjunction / or the implicit meaning of the subordinate conjuction оскільки/тому. (Why could he not learn the poem by heart? - Because it was long.) - Оскільки/тому що вірш був великий, він його не вивчив напам'ять.

Similarly with some other functionals whose implicit meanings, functions and sometimes even their logico-grammatical nature can be clearly established only at the level of word-groups or sentences. This becomes clearly evident from the following sentences in which the lexical and logico-grammatical nature of the word but is most explicitly realized:

«He is but a boy!» «Та ж він me хлопчина/
(R.AIdington) дитина!»

All of us but a few have come Ми всі, за винятком/крім to this conclusion. (G.Greene) небагатьох, прийшли до

цього висновку.

But for his open eyes, he Якби очі не були
might have been asleep, розплющені, можна було
(Glasworthy) подумати, що він спить.

The contextual environment ofbuf.therefore, predetermines the lexico-grammatical nature of the word (and not only of this word), which may be adverb (We can not but try. - Нам залишається тільки ще раз спробувати) or conjunction (Never a week passes but he comes. - He минає і тиждня, щоб він не навідався.)

The word but is also used in different functions in idiomatic expressions. Cf.: «But me no buts. sir, interrupts the diddler, apparently in a very high dungeon.» (E.Poe) - «а ти мені не


«алекай» (не відхрещуйся), - грубо обірвав йогф голос причепи ніби/мов із глибокої темниці. The last but one -передостанній, but for - якби не/коли б не.but for your help we should not have finished in time-якби не твоя допомога, ми не зактчили б роботу вчасно; but then крім того: London is a busy place, but then it is also the place where you get the best entertainment. (CADE) Лондон - місто великої ділової активності, а крім тогоще й місце, де можна найкраще порозважатися.

The choice of a definite meaning out of some inherent in the semantic structure of an English language unit can also depend upon the style of the matter under translation. For example, the idiomatic expression to loose one's reason and its synonyms to loose one's mind, to go out of one's head, to go insane are confined in their use to literary speech styles, while to go mad or to go crazy are used in colloquial and low colloquial speech styles, as a rule.

Similar stylistic restrictions are observed with the use of Ukrainian equivalents and analogies of this idiomatic expression too. Cf.:

literary/neutral style: зійти з розуму/рішитися розуму, з'їхати з глузду.

colloquial/low colloquial: блекоти/чемериці наїстися, здуріти, сказитися.

No need to prove that the lexical meaning of each of these variants, even when taken out of context, already predetermines at the same time the speech style, in which it can and should be used in the target language.

A considerable number of other sense units, however, which are endowed with particular emotive, stylistic or extralingual meanings, can not exaustively explicate these characteristics at the level of a word-group or even sentence, but only at the level of passage/ text. This becomes especially evident when translating belles-lettres/ publicistic and some other styles texts.1





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