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Friday, May 25, 2007

Worst. Translation. Ever.

I came across this website the other day when doing a simple search for the latin lyrics to the Ave Maria. This site actually claims that the words below are the "Original Latin" and the "English Translation", as noted. Click the link to go to the cited web page.

The Ave Maria, in Latin:

Original Latin:

Ave Maria
Gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Ave, ave dominus
Dominus tecum
Benedicta tu in mulieribus
Et benedictus
Et benedictus fructus ventris
Ventris tuae, Jesus

Ave Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Ave, ave dominus
Dominus tecum Ave Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Maria, gratia plena
Ave, ave dominus
Dominus tecum

Ave Maria
Mater Dei
Ora pro nobis peccatoribus
Ora pro nobis
Ora, ora pro nobis peccatoribus
Nunc et in hora mortis
Et in hora mortis nostrae
Et in hora mortis nostrae
Et in hora mortis nostrae
Ave Maria

English Translation:

Ave Maria Ave Maria! Maiden mild
Oh! listen to a maiden's pray'r
For thou canst hear 'em in the wild
'Tis Thou, 'Tis thou canst save amid despair
We slumber safely 'till the 'morrow
Though we by men outcast, revil'd
O Maiden, see a maiden's sorrow
Oh Mother, hear a suppliant child!
Ave Maria...

The murky cavern's air so heavy
Shall breathe of balm if Thou hast smil'd
Oh Maiden, hear a maiden pleading
Oh Mother, hear a suppliant child!
Ave Maria...
Ave Maria...


Odysseus said...

Well, the LAtin is correct. It is the "sung-version" of the Ave Maria, hence all the repetition.

I don't know why the English song is being paraded as a translation. It is clearly another song entirely.

Cathy said...

Oh. my. word.

That is so lame.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't have a problem with it if it was even a faulty translation...but it's not even a translation and they're calling it such!

~ Adoro

swissmiss said...

I think they used an online translator, like Babelfish. Don't think they have Latin-to-English so they must've settled for Latin-to-say what?

Anonymous said...

I've seen a very similar "translation" -- in an old piano method book, of all places.

I wonder if that schmoopy not-translation is an attempt to cook up something in English that can be sung to Schubert's setting of the Ave Maria -- but doesn't sound "too Catholic."

You can find the Latin texts of many prayers here: Thesaurus Precum Latinarum.

Cathy_of_Alex said...

I'm afraid to see what they did to Stabat Mater

Fr. V said...

All translators are betrayers - Italian proverb

Lynne said...

The website design is as awful as the translation...

Father Tim said...

I thought it was a rather poignant translation, especially that part about "thou canst save amid despair" - which shows that the translator was hip to the coredemptrix thing.

Archistrategos said...

Actually, that is the correct translation for Schubert's Ave Maria. It was originally written in German, and contrary to popular belief, was not written for the Blessed Virgin, but for a 'lake spirit' who happened to be called Maria. It was only recently that the words of the angelic salutation were superimposed on the original words.

Adoro said...

swissmiss, I tried to respond earlier but it didn't post, I see.

I only WISH babelfish had a Latin translator...that would be a riot!

Peony Miss ~ While I couldn't get to the home page (wouldn't load), so I can't see the intent of the "author" of this mess, I get the idea that they are about stuff contrary to what the music is about.

Cathy ~ don't give me nightmares!

Fr. V. ~ Truer words were never spoken. However, I have done some translation (Spanish-English) and I was very true to the intent. But then agann, I'm not a "professional". :-) Does that get me off the hook?

Lynne ~ Isn't it, though?

Adoro said...

Father Tim ~ Have you been getting into Britnee's 'shrooms? You completely missed the most obvious line:

"Though we by men outcast, revil'd "

So appaarently this "enlightened feminist" thing you are into is just an act and you're just as much as a chauvenist pig as all the other men you all pretend to hate so much, or you're into the 'shrooms or maybe Keith's green tea leaves.


And where did Fr. Juno go?

Archistrategos ~ Who sent you? I'm going to have to check the sidebar for SOV2 to see if you're a new member. The words are clearly the words to the Hail Mary, which is NOT a Lake Spirit as much as SOV2 in their Gaia-worship would like to say.

Archistrategos said...

Haha... In all seriousness, though, it is from Walter Scott's play 'Lady of the Lake'. Schubert was very devoted to the Blessed Virgin when he wrote this, despite being a Lutheran. The 'original' version is called Ellens dritter Gesang, and the German words fit very well the English translation you provided.Here is a link :).

Adoro said...

archistrategos ~

Thanks for the link and I owe you an apology...! Sorry! Since you folllowed on the heels of a parody interruption, with that info, I figured you were part of it!

I'm so living Total Recall since the advent of SOV2 parish in the blog world!

I read the info, and while I often question Wickipedia (as everyone should...have you seen their definition of "human dignity"?!), it gives enough info.

So I stand by my original complaint...the words provided are NOT the Latin translation, and you did a lot to support that!

God bless!


Anonymous said...

Well, thanks to Archistrategos, I have learned something new today!

Adoro, feel free to add to your complaint a couple of other things wrong with the page:

1. Johann Sebastian Bach wrote some amazing stuff, but he did not write the Ave Maria prayer. Credit for those lyrics, of course, goes primarily to the Archangel Gabriel and St Elizabeth.

2. And, of course, JSB also had nothing to do with the "listen to a maiden's prayer" poem.

In the original poem, a young woman is actually asking the intercession of the Blessed Virgin. She begins her prayer with the words "Ave Maria" and goes on in her own words.

Walter Scott's "Lady of the Lake" is here -- you can scroll down to find his original poem.

Melody K said...

Ever try to find a singable English version of Panis Angelicus?
The only one I have ever found totally murders the meaning of the Latin words. Maybe some things aren't meant to be translated.