Translation Samples

English to French Translations (Travel and Tourism Industry)

Source text – English
All travel is now merely a means of moving a camera from place to place, all travellers are ruled by the all-powerful lens. Visitors old-fashioned enough to wish only to stand and look with their anachronistic eyes are shoved aside by the photographers, who take it for granted that while they do their ritual focusing, nothing else may move or cross their vision. Those peculiar souls without a camera must step aside for those more properly occupied, must wait while the rituals take place, and must bide their time while whole coaches stop and unleash upon the landscape the Instamatic God. And the populations of whole countries seeing themselves cannibalised, swallowed up, vacuumed into the black-ringed staring eye, wrench what they can from the cannibals. You want picture my house, my camel? You pay.

None of this would matter, perhaps, if anything worthwhile was being accomplished. If all the constant busyness and clicking produced, at its end, what had not existed before, images of beauty captured or truth told. But, sadly, this isn’t so. The camera is simply graffiti made respectable.

The camera is the means by which we stamp ourselves on everything we see, under cover of recording the Wonders of the World already wonderfully
recorded by professionals and on sale at every corner bookshop and newsagent. But what use to show Aunt Maud, back home, postcards of the Tuscan landscape, since we are not in the picture to prove that we were there?

No stretch of rocks has verity unless I am within it. No monument exists
but for my wife, leaning against it. No temple is of interest without my face beside it, grinning. With my camera I appropriate everything beautiful, possess it, shrink it, domesticate it, and reproduce it on my blank sitting-room wall to prove to a selected audience of friends and family the one absolutely vital fact about these beauties: I saw them, I was there, I photographed them, and, ergo, they are.

from “Amateur Photography: the World as it isn’t and our Fred” by Jill Tweedie in the Guardian

Translation – French
Tous les voyages ne servent aujourd’hui qu’à déplacer un appareil photo d’un endroit à un autre, et tous les voyageurs n’obéissent plus qu’aux diktats de l’objectif tout-puissant. Les voyageurs assez démodés pour ne vouloir regarder qu’avec leurs yeux (quel anachronisme !) doivent s’écarter pour laisser la place aux photographes, qui estiment tout naturel que rien ne vienne perturber ou traverser leur champ de vision pendant leur rituel de mise au point. Les pauvres âmes sans appareil photo doivent céder le pas à ces voyageurs aux aspirations plus nobles et attendre la fin du rituel, pendant que des bus bondés déversent sur le paysage des hordes de touristes avides d’un sacrifice au Dieu Instamatic. Et ce sont ainsi des populations de pays tout entiers qui se voient cannibalisées, avalées, englouties dans l’œil du cyclone de cette chambre noire, en essayant d’arracher en chemin tout ce qu’elles peuvent à ces cannibales. Toi vouloir photo maison, photo chameau ? Toi donner argent.

Tout cela n’aurait, peut-être, aucune importance si quelque chose de louable était réalisé. Si toute cette agitation, tous ces « clics-clacs » produisaient au final quelque chose d’inédit, une image d’une beauté immortalisée ou d’une vérité éternelle. Mais malheureusement, ce n’est pas le cas. Les photos sont l’équivalent des tags, respectabilité en plus.

Elles nous servent à marquer notre présence sur tout ce que nous voyons, en prétextant immortaliser les Merveilles du monde, pourtant déjà magnifiquement immortalisées par le travail des photographes professionnels, en vente dans presque toutes les libraires et tous les marchands de journaux du coin. Mais quelle utilité, une fois de retour de vacances, de montrer à Tante Suzanne des cartes postales de paysages de Toscane si nous ne sommes pas sur la photo, comme preuve ultime de notre présence sur les lieux ?

Aucune étendue rocheuse n’existe réellement si je ne suis pas photographié à ses côtés. Aucun monument ne tient debout si ma femme n’est pas en train de s’appuyer contre. Aucun temple n’a d’intérêt si mon visage rayonnant n’est pas photographié à ses côtés. Avec mon appareil photo, je m’approprie tout ce qui est beau, je le possède, le réduis, le domestique et le reproduis sur les murs vides de mon salon pour prouver à un public trié sur le volet (d’amis et de membres de ma famille) la seule vérité essentielle concernant ces beautés : j’y étais, je les ai vues, je les ai photographiées et donc, elles existent.

German to English Translations (Travel and Tourism Industry)

Source text – German

Die Fahrt von Berwick nach Edinburgh, vierundfünfzig englische Meilen, fast immer im Angesichte des Meeres, wäre allein die Reise wert; von so seltener, wunderbarer Schönheit ist die Gegend, aber deshalbwohl umso unbeschreibbarer.

Bis dicht hinab an die Wellen der Küste bebaut wie ein Garten:
Kornfelder, Wiesen mit Herden bedeckt, Obst- und Gemüsegärten
wechseln, alles in der Pracht der üppigsten Vegetation. Dazwischen
kleine Gehölze, duftende, blühende Hecken, und in ihrer Mitte Dörfer,
die umso malerischer erscheinen, da sie schon ein ländlicheres
Ansehen haben und nicht, wie die englischen, kleinen Städten ähnlich
sind. Das Land ist nicht bergig, aber auch nicht flach; wellenförmig
erhebt es sich zu kleinen Anhöhen und sinkt wieder zu lieblichen
Gründen hinab. Freundliche, einzelne Landhäuser liegen überall zerstreut, ehrwürdige, efeubewachsenen Ruinen der Vorzeit erheben ihre alten Mauern und zeugen von vergangener Größe. Und nun noch der Anblick des Meeres, dieses ewig wechselnden Elements, das jeder Gegend, auch der ödesten, Leben gibt!

Kleine Inseln mit Leuchttürmen, entfernte blaue Felsen, die zackig
und wild am Horizonte sichtbar werden, alles, alles vereint sich hier,
um ein Ganzes voll wunderbarer Schönheit zu bilden.


Carron, Stirling


Gegen Abend erreichten wir Stirling.

Diese ziemlich große, lebhafte Stadt wird schon zu den Hochlanden
gerechnet. Jetzt war sie voller Soldaten, und Straßen und Häuser
umso lebendiger. Ihre Lage am Fuße eines hohen Felsen ist sehr schön. Einige Straßen führen gerade den Fels hinauf, auf dessen höchstem Gipfel ein altes Schloß thront. Jetzt ist es zum Teil zu Kasernen, zum Teil zu Offizierswohnungen eingerichtet.

Translation – English

It would have been worth travelling to Scotland for the journey
from Berwick to Edinburgh alone, as at nearly all points on this
45-mile-long journey we had a view of the sea. This area exhibits a rare and wonderful beauty, making it indescribable.

One encounters alternating images of cornfields, meadows full of herds, and fruit and vegetable gardens stretching all the way to the shoreline. All of these are cultivated like a garden and home to the lushest possible vegetation. Among them, one spots small shrubs and fragrant, blooming hedges, and in their midst are villages that appear all the more picturesque by virtue of their rural appearance (which can be contrasted with the English ones that resemble small cities). The land is not mountainous, but also not flat; it rises to form small hills in a wavelike way before sinking again to reveal delightful spots of land. Friendly-looking country houses are scattered everywhere, while the old walls of venerable, ivy-clad ruins of antiquity rise up impressively, bearing witness to their past grandeur. And then there’s the view of the sea, that constantly changing element that gives every area, even the most barren, life!

Small islands with lighthouses, distant blue cliffs that appear jagged and wild on the horizon – here everything combines to form one wonderful image of beauty.


Carron, Stirling


We arrived in Stirling around evening time.

This quite large, vibrant city is considered part of the highlands.
At this point in time, Stirling was full of soldiers, making the
streets and homes all the more lively. The city’s location
at the foot of a high cliff is very beautiful. Several roads
lead up to the cliff, and an old castle sits atop its summit.
It currently houses barracks and officers’ quarters.

We enjoyed a magnificent view from the terrace located
in front of the castle. Before us lay a wide, fertile valley
exhibiting all the splendour of the highest culture, the most lush vegetation, the place brimming with dwellings, villages, and grand trees. The River Forth displays the most varied crooks as it winds its way through the cheerful area; at some points it continues in a forwardly direction, at others it returns to long passages before again creeping hesitantly forward, as if it were reluctant to leave this paradise behind. A beautiful stone bridge located right at the outskirts of the city at our feet only makes the landscape appear more picturesque. In the distance, one can see clouds of smoke rising from Carron in a way that resembles a volcano. Beautiful blue twilit mountains on either side obscure one’s vision in these directions, yet there are no limits to one’s view extending forwards.

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