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Author Topic: Japanese Translation Questions  (Read 130656 times)

DarknessSavior

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #100 on: January 14, 2011, 07:51:21 am »
When it’s volitional+とする, it means “try to <verb>” (in the case that it might not [in the future] or did not [in the past] succeed) or “about to <verb>” (in the case that there is no “try” about the action in question).
So while that might make sense for other instances, I'm still not sure what it means in -this- one. >_>;;

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BRPXQZME

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #101 on: January 14, 2011, 09:50:04 am »
{過去に世界を掌握していた者たちは}1{後世に}2{何を}3{残そうと}4{した}5{のか}6
{What}3 {did}5 {those who once controlled the world}1 {try to leave}4,5 {to future generations}2{?}6

In practical terms, the “try” is meant in the purest sense of the volitional. The speaker doesn’t know what {they}1 wanted to do, or even if {they}1 wanted to do anything in particular in this regard. You can take it out if you firmly believe what Yoda says about trying.
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Paul Jensen

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #102 on: January 14, 2011, 10:41:20 am »
過去世界掌握していた者たち
後世そうとしたのか


First off, this sentence is probably most accurately translated as:

1) What was it that the people who were ruling the world in the past tried to leave behind?

But (1) probably sounds better as:

2) What exactly were the past rulers of the world trying to leave behind?

As for いる -- or in this case, its past tense form いた -- it just means be. It's an auxiliary verb that functions almost as be does in English. One major difference is that is often behaves much like the English auxiliary verb have, as in the following conversation:

3) A: あの映画、見た?  Did/Have you see that movie?
   B: いや、まだ見て(い)ない。 No, I haven't.

The reason for this is that Japanese doesn't have a separate auxiliary for expressing present perfect (i.e. have done form); it expresses it using いる. Its function in a given sentence is usually clear from the context, so a separate word isn't necessary.

English used to be like this. Consider the first line of Joy To The World:

4) Joy to the world, the lord is come.

In more contemporary English, we'd use the word have here, but that wasn't the case in the past.

Next, as for ~そうとする, as others have already said, it means to attempt to do, with an added nuance of failure. Think about it this way:

5) Person A (thinking to himself): 帰ろうかな?  Maybe I should go home?
    Person A (to Person B): じゃ、帰る。  I'm going home.
    Person B: ええ? もう少しここでいて。  What? Stay/Be here for a bit.

Later, Person B might say to Person C:

6) Person A: 帰ろうとしたら、PersonBに止められたんだ。 When I tried to go home, I was stopped by person B.

The phrase とする is a variant of にする, which means to make something a certain way. So basically, in (6), 帰ろうとする (represented as 帰ろうとしたら) means to make it so that I might leave.

So, 残そうとした means made as so to possibly leave behind, which of course sounds much (much) better as tried to leave behind.

Finally, as for the dreaded のか, that can usually be represented as a so called it-clause:

1') What was it that the people who were ruling the world in the past tried to leave behind?

Compare this to:

7) What were the people who were ruling the world in the past tried to leave behind?

An it-clause places focus/emphasis on a certain element in a sentence. Japanese questions ending with のか usually imply that the thing in question is something unusual, mysterious, or unexpected. The question is not a neutral question -- the asker really really wants to know what the answer is, because it's not something obvious.

That's the best explanation I can come up with right now.

HTH
« Last Edit: January 16, 2011, 09:08:04 am by Paul Jensen »
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SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #103 on: January 14, 2011, 09:32:36 pm »
Very well explained, thank you.

I read each post a few times and thought about it for a while.

Would it be right to say that:

英語を勉強しました: I studied English. Simple past.
英語を勉強していた:I have studied English. Present perfect.
英語を勉強している: I am studing English. Present progressive.

Could we just sum things up to this or is it more complex than that?

About the のか Paul, I thought you said it was used to imply that we were expecting some sort of answer? Or is that another function of のか?

I do understand your explanation of のか there but I wanted to make sure this was the same function or a different one.


Paul Jensen

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #104 on: January 15, 2011, 10:16:46 am »
Would it be right to say that:

英語を勉強しました: I studied English. Simple past.
英語を勉強していた:I have studied English. Present perfect.
英語を勉強している: I am studying English. Present progressive.

Could we just sum things up to this or is it more complex than that?

About the のか Paul, I thought you said it was used to imply that we were expecting some sort of answer? Or is that another function of のか?

I do understand your explanation of のか there but I wanted to make sure this was the same function or a different one.

I don't think anyone would say 英語を勉強しました, unless they're talking about a one-shot study session, as in the following:

1) A: 今日、何した? What did you do today?
    B: 今日、英語を勉強した。 I studied English.

The second sentence would actually likely be interpreted as past progressive, i.e. I was studying English, which would be interpreted as I used to study English.

The third sentence is the present progressive -- an activity that started in the past and continues now. Studying a language usually takes a long time, and is usually represented using a progressive form. So the third sentence would actually be rendered as I was studying English.

Things get a little tricky with negatives, though. Consider:

2) A: 今日、英語を勉強した? Did you study English today?
    B: いや、まだしてない。 No, I haven't yet.

But anyway, it looks like you've got a the basic idea.

To add a little more to the previous discussion about のか, it basically represents surprise. You can sometimes represent it in grammar (as shown in my previous post), but it's more a feeling than anything else. A speaker who utters のか is trying to show that they really want to know the answer to something that is/was unexpected to them. It's often used in riddles, for example.

HTH
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SeekerOfPeace

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« Reply #105 on: January 15, 2011, 11:00:57 am »
Thank you Paul, I’m sure we’ll have more opportunities to deal with the particle compound のか in the near future.

About DS's question:

Well here’s how I understand it.

If you want to form the volitional of your verb, you’d need to know the dictionary form first.

残す; 遺す 【のこす】: to reserve; to bequeath; to leave (behind, over); to save.

ごだん. So once you know it’s ごだん then you replace the suffix –す by –そう。
So in this case 残す turns into 残そう。

Only here it’s not really volitional because it’s not so much the -そう as it is the -そうとした construction.
So like Paul said, tried to leave behind.

Here's the next sentence:

伝説とは往々して変成され
推并られ、その真実忘却される


blue: I messed up the Kanji there but I can't make it out.
red: particles
brown: verb endings
black: nouns
Adv.: green

Expressions:
往々にして 【おうおうにして】 (adv) sometimes; occasionally; now and then; from time to time;

Alright, as usual, I'm not looking for the actual translation :thumbsup:.

Qts 1:
What is the word I've put in blue in the sentence? I can't make it out.

Qts 2:
I've underlined two endings in the sample, do they indicate the passive form?


A legend mentions [something] time and time again but the truth has been forgotten...

i88gerbils

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #106 on: January 15, 2011, 04:13:47 pm »
1. Do you mean 推算 【すいさん】 ?
2. Yes, it is 'passive'. If you see many sentences or uses, you can infer more of a informative voice (like a news report or lab report). In this case a history lesson.

"推算に語られ" is pretty crucial to understanding this. You also forgot 変成【へんせい】, which is also crucial here.

Read & translate the phrases separately like this, and then combine them back together.
1. 伝説とは往々にして変成され
2. 推算に語られ、
3. その真実は忘却される.


How I would do it:

Spoiler:
Legends are sometimes changed and embellished, and the truth is forgotten.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 04:22:06 pm by i88gerbils »

SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #107 on: January 15, 2011, 08:41:26 pm »
Thank you i88gerbills,

I didn't forget the character, I just wanted to do it step-by-step so to speak  ;).

世界の多くの人々は
Many people of the world...
This one is pretty easy, I thought.

I'll work on the next two phrases from now on:
そんな過去とすれ遺うほどの関係もなく
その時を終ていく


Here's what I'd like to know:

1. Is とすれ a different inflexion of とする which we saw before? (following 過去)? Or is it part of the expression: すれ違う 【すれちがう】 (v5u) to pass by one another; to disagree; to miss each other;

2. What does ほど mean here? My dictionary says:
ほど 【程】: indicates approx. amount or maximim; limit; upper limit; degree; extent; bounds
But I'm unsure as to the actual purpose of this adverbial noun.

3. What is もなく there? I'm guessing it's the inflected form or somethign else but what exactly?

4. About 終えていく、I know it's the て form of 終える. I was wondering if this was another case of Verb+て form+いる again. If not, what is that いく there, is it the kana form of 行く? Is it an auxiliary verb? What does it do?


BRPXQZME

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #108 on: January 15, 2011, 10:02:22 pm »
1. Is とすれ a different inflexion of とする which we saw before? (following 過去)? Or is it part of the expression: すれ違う 【すれちがう】 (v5u) to pass by one another; to disagree; to miss each other;
The latter. The reason for the kana is that the kanji 擦 probably isn’t given top billing in fonts with a limited number of kanji and certainly isn’t as common as 違.

2. What does ほど mean here? My dictionary says:
ほど 【程】: indicates approx. amount or maximim; limit; upper limit; degree; extent; bounds
But I'm unsure as to the actual purpose of this adverbial noun.
This what it does if you consider the ほど alone instead of how it’s usually used—it often works the way a certain definition of the English word “as” is used, not that that usually ends up being the best translation.

長いほど高い - as tall as it is long
遅くなるほど - the later it gets (more closely and less naturally: as it gets late)
なるほどね… - I see. (more closely and less naturally: as expected)
あくびが出るほど - enough to [make me] yawn
おこるほど - as much as [it] happens

These sorts of uses (at least in what my limited experience is) are more common than using it as a noun. In written language, it tends to be written in kana when used this way, and tends to be written in kanji when used as a noun.

3. What is もなく there? I'm guessing it's the inflected form or somethign else but what exactly?
〜もない indicates “there is not even ___”. By using the particle も instead of が, you get a different nuance than saying 〜がない, “there is no ___”. Contrast with positives: 〜もある, “there is even/also ___”; 〜がある, “there is ___”.

なく is the adverbial form of ない. There are multiple reasons for using an adverbial form of an adjective in Japanese; it is one way of closing an independent clause without also ending the sentence, for instance.

4. About 終えていく、I know it's the て form of 終える. I was wondering if this was another case of Verb+て form+いる again. If not, what is that いく there, is it the kana form of 行く? Is it an auxiliary verb? What does it do?
〜ていく is a grammar lesson unto itself.
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SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #109 on: January 16, 2011, 09:38:18 am »
Awesome reply, thank you so much. I really appreciate it!

I've read the website you've linked and here's my understanding:

その時を終ていく

This is what I've read:

When "-te iku" is attached to an intentional verb as shown in sentence (6), it expresses the meaning of orderly actions like "doing a certain thing and the going away from a speaker/hearer" (example: tabete iku, mite iku) .

On the other hand, If  "-te iku is attached to a unintentional verb, as shown in sentence (12), it expresses "the progress of a state change", (examples: Samuku natte iku, It will get cold. Korekara mo shizen o taisetsu ni shite ikitai, We want to preserve nature from now on, too. Yo no naka ga kawatte itta, The world has changed).

The thing is, is 終える an intentional verb or not? I would say it's unintentional. In that case, could I translate to:

This time is coming to an end...

そんな過去とすれ遺うほどの関係もなく
This time is about to pass as there is no connection...

The full translation:
For many people around the world, this time is about to end as there is no connection... (?)

Am I right along the right track here?

まるで妖艶な花の芳しい香りに
誘われる蜜蜂のように
As if a flower released its bewitching smell to lure in the bees.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2011, 05:56:29 pm by SeekerOfPeace »

BRPXQZME

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #110 on: January 16, 2011, 07:13:33 pm »
The thing is, is 終える an intentional verb or not? I would say it's unintentional.
Nope.

The terms usually used in discussing grammar here are “transitive” (has a direct object; the subject is the agent that accomplishes the verb’s action) and “intransitive” (does not have a direct object; the verb just happens, end of story). Quite a few verbs in Japanese come in pairs of these (in English, similar pairs like “raise” and “rise” are rare; we usually either use the exact same verb for both [wherein the phrasing determines the difference] or two fairly unlike verbs).

So 終える is the transitive form, where some subject acts on some object. The intransitive verb 終わる means something came to an end, often of its own accord. It’s the difference between “he ended the [whatever]” and “the [whatever] ended”.
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Paul Jensen

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #111 on: January 16, 2011, 10:01:25 pm »
世界の多くの人々は
そんな過去とすれうほどの関係もなく
その時を終えていく

So, this should be something like:

Many people in the world
live out their time
as though simply passing through the past,
with no connection to it at all.


As you noticed, the first line is pretty straightforward. The second line can be divided as follows:

そんな過去とすれ違うほど  to the extent of passing by/through that past
関係もなく  with no connection at all (も is used for emphasis here)

As for the interpretation of the third line, it seems clear from the context that the phrase その時を終える (ending that time) means that the people mentioned in the first line are dying.

The third line contains ~ていく, which here indicates a repeated action (i.e. dying). I don't think it's necessary to explicitly represent it, though. The simple present expresses this just fine, IMO.


Quote
まるで妖艶な花の芳しい香りに
誘われる蜜蜂のように
As if a flower released its bewitching smell to lure in the bees.

Close. This isn't an independent sentence -- it's an adverbial clause, which should be:

As though a honeybee lured by the bewitching, sweet-smelling fragrance of a flower

or possibly:

As though a honeybee bewitched by the sweet fragrance of a flower


You probably know this by now, but the best way to translate a complex sentence/clause is to reduce it to the core elements to get the basic meaning, and then to augment that meaning by incorporating the other elements.

In the clause above, the core is the subject, 蜜蜂. You can break down the clause like this:

蜜蜂のように  like a honeybee

What kind of honeybee?

誘われる蜜蜂  a honeybee that's been lured

Lured by who/what?

妖艶な花の芳しい香りに  by the bewitching, sweet-smelling fragrance of a flower

Exactly like a honeybee?

まるで 蜜蜂のように  almost exactly like a honeybee


HTH
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SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #112 on: January 17, 2011, 10:53:54 am »
Thanks to both of you.

Alright Paul, I’ll try to use your technique this time around.
彼らは何かを求め
闇が包み込む迷宮へと挑む


彼らは:「かれらは」So the topic is of this sentence is about them (they).
They…

何かを求め:  「なにかをもとめ」Something is the direct object of request.
So this gives me:
They requested something…

闇:「やみ」: darkness. Followed by the subject marker 「が」.

包み込む:「つつみこむ」:(v.) to wrap up.

迷宮:「めいきゅう」:(n.) labyrinth

へと:This is a particle compound but I have no idea what it does. Perhaps it means to go in a direction with something…

挑む:「いどむ」:(v.) to challenge
So I would say something among the lines of:

They requested that some people challenge the darkness that engulfed the labyrinth.

A question:
「包み込む」defines what comes after, in this case 迷宮 correct?

Paul Jensen

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #113 on: January 17, 2011, 10:42:12 pm »
Alright Paul, I’ll try to use your technique this time around.
彼らは何かを求め
闇が包み込む迷宮へと挑む


彼らは:「かれらは」So the topic is of this sentence is about them (they).
They…

The structure of this sentence is a little different from the other one you posted about the bees. That one was a passive adverbial clause, with the subject at the end. This is a normal "active" sentence, so you need to approach it in a different way.

First, think about the core structure. The core structure of this sentence is:

1) 彼らは 挑む。  They dare/challenge

Everything else in the sentence modifies this basic action. If you work backwards from the main verb, the next thing you'll find is the answer to, "How/in what way did they dare/challenge?". The answer is:

2) 迷宮へと  to the labyrinth

The へと here is confusing. AFAIK, と turns the phrase before it into an adverbial clause. と is often used as a substitute for に, which usually functions as an adverbial marker. For whatever reason, you never find the particle sequence へに in Japanese -- へと is used instead. You could also think of と as "quoting" the phrase that comes before it -- picture somebody thinking or shouting "To the labyrinth!".

Then, "What kind of labyrinth?"

3) 闇が包み込む  (one) shrouded/veiled/enveloped in darkness

Notice that (3) is actually a short sentence, with a subject (闇) and a verb phrase (包み込む). 闇 is marked by が because 闇 is the subject of an embedded clause/sentence, and not the subject of the whole sentence.

Then, "What was the purpose of this challenge?"

4) 何かを求め  to seek/find/search for something

If you put this all together, you get the run-on like sentence:

5) They dare(d?) their way to the labyrinth enshrouded by darkness in search of something.

Quote
A question:
「包み込む」defines what comes after, in this case 迷宮 correct?

Yes. Note that this is the opposite of English, in which modifying clauses (i.e. sentences that modify noun phrases) come after the elements they modify.

HTH
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SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #114 on: January 18, 2011, 10:06:13 am »
Epic explanation Paul, thank you.


莫大な金銀財宝、華々しい名誉
練魔される技術、「?」えられる知識
そして積み上げられる徳

I'm not certain about the Kanji highlighted in yellow.

Since this is once again a long sentence, I'll take it slow and go one phrase at a time.

莫大な金銀財宝、華々しい名誉
Great treasures of gold ans silver, spectacular prestige

莫大な:「ばくだいな」(adj.) vast
金銀:「きんぎん」:(n.) gold and silver
財宝:「ざいほう」:(n.) treasure
華々しい:「はなばなしい」:(adj.) brilliant, spectacular
名誉:「めいよ」:(n.) honor, prestige


練魔される技術、

練 【きたう】 Kitau (u) 【ねり】 Neri (s) 【れん】 Ren (s) NA
魔 【ま】 (n) (1) demon; devil; evil spirit; evil influence; (n-suf) (2) (See 覗き魔) someone who (habitually) performs some (negative) act; (P); ED
される (v1) honorific or passive form of the verb "suru"; KD
技術 【ぎじゅつ】 (n) art; craft; technique; technology; engineering; skill; (P);


I’m not sure I understand the function of される here. Does it mean:
Crafter by evil spirits…?

そして積み上げられる徳。
...and was piled up for profit.

そして (conj) and; KD
Possible inflected verb or adjective: (passive or potential)
積み上げる 【つみあげる】 (v1,vt) to pile up; to make a heap; to lay bricks; ED
徳 【とく】 (n) (1) virtue; (2) benevolence; (3) (See 得・とく・1) profit; benefit; advantage; ED

自ら望めば誰もが
夢を見ることができた時代

自ら:「みずから」:for one’s self
望む:「のぞむ」:(v.) to desire
誰も:「だれも」:everyone
夢を見る:「ゆめをみる」:(v.) to have a dream, to dream
時代:「じだい」:(n.) era


For everyone desired this for themselves, those kind of dreams were possible at that time.


人々は彼らのことを「冒険者」と呼ぶ
Everyone called those people adventurers.

 
« Last Edit: January 18, 2011, 10:25:59 am by SeekerOfPeace »

i88gerbils

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #115 on: January 18, 2011, 11:25:49 am »
Quote
錬磨される技術

錬磨 you mistyped as . They have the same reading too. :-)
技術 is skill. You see this word as well as each separated very often in games (特技, 技, 術).

I look at this phrase like this - 技術 that/which are/will be 錬磨. Like Paul Jensen mentioned, it's beneficial to work backwards through the sentence.

される is the passive of する. We know that when you combine a "noun" + する it's like making a verb out of "noun". So 錬磨される is like 錬磨する except passive. It's similar to saying 技術は彼に錬磨される (note I added the 彼に for clarity). As a side note, 彼に錬磨されるのは技術 would be another way of conveying something similar. Try to word all three of these separately and you'll see they convey similar meaning in English (but not exact).

1. 錬磨される技術.
2. 技術は彼に錬磨される.
3. 彼に錬磨されるのは技術.

SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #116 on: January 18, 2011, 11:58:52 am »
Alright, let me try again then.

錬磨される技術.
So the passive form of 練磨「れんま」 is ''was practiced''. What follow is 技術「ぎじゅつ」for technique. So:
A technique which was practiced.

技術は彼に錬磨される
The technique was practiced by him.

彼に錬磨されるのは技術.

(not too sure about this one)
What was practiced by him is a technique.

DarknessSavior

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #117 on: January 18, 2011, 05:33:07 pm »
That section is kind of...strange. But here goes anyway:

莫大な金銀財宝、華々しい名誉
練磨される技術、蓄えられる知識
そして積み上げられる徳
A vast treasure of silver and gold, a magnificent honor.
Techniques that are mastered, knowledge that is preserved.
And finally, the benevolence that was gained.

I didn't know what that kanji was, to be honest. But I took a page from the BRPXQZME book of tricks, and I googled the first line of the paragraph. It just so happens I pulled up a .pdf scan of some publicity thing for the game (Wizardry, right?), which had the full quote, and the kanji in question. Never hurts to try doing that if you're having trouble transcribing something.

~DS
Red Comet: :'( Poor DS. Nobody loves him like RC does. :'(
Sliver-X: LET ME INFRINGE UPON IT WITH MY MOUTH
DSRH - Currently working on: Demon's Blazon, Romancing SaGa, FFIV EasyType.
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Paul Jensen

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #118 on: January 18, 2011, 07:55:21 pm »
Epic explanation Paul, thank you.

No problem. :)


莫大な金銀財宝、華々しい名誉
練磨される技術、蓄えられる知識
そして積み上げられる徳
A vast treasure of silver and gold, a magnificent honor.
Techniques that are mastered, knowledge that is preserved.
And finally, the benevolence that was gained.

I'd put this a slightly different way:

Vast riches of silver and gold,
Spectacular honor,
Skills to be honed,
Knowledge to be stored,
And virtue to be attained.

The phrase 積み上げられる is especially hard to render in English in this case because it literally translates to pile up, which doesn't sound very poetic at all.

The last line could be profit to be amassed, but it's probably unlikely since gold and silver were already mentioned in the first line.


Quote
自ら望めば誰もが
夢を見ることができた時代

For everyone desired this for themselves, those kind of dreams were possible at that time.[/i]

Close. The core of this phrase (it's not a complete sentence) is 時代, so the structure should be something like:

1) It was an age when...

The full translation is:

2) It was an age when anyone who desired could have such dreams.


Quote
人々は彼らのことを「冒険者」と呼ぶ
Everyone called those people adventurers.

Looks good to me.

HTH
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SeekerOfPeace

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Re: Japanese Translation Questions
« Reply #119 on: January 18, 2011, 08:12:02 pm »
Thanks to both of you.

Quote
Looks good to me.

YEEEEEAAAAHHH!

Paul, you've often mentioned the core of a sentence. How do you determine what is the core of a sentence? Common sense?

Or is it usually a noun, or words at the beginning or the end of a sentence?

Could you clarify this concept please? I'm making some progress and I think that strategies such as going from the end of the sentence and back or finding the core element are really great and useful to know.

ここは?どこだ?
This place... Where am I?


久しぶりの「擭」物か。。。
I'm having difficulty identifying the kanji in bold (I know this one is wrong but I don't know which one is right).