Many of you may have noticed that things don’t always translate exactly from English to Korean, or vice versa. As an Interpreting Major, I can tell you that interpretation and translation translates the concept, not the actual words.
This can be easily seen in even just the titles of classic novels. I have a few that I’ll use as an example.
English: Anne of Green Gables
Korean: 빨간 머리 앤
Korean Translation: Red-head Anne
빨간색 means ‘red’, if you drop 색 you get the adjective form of the word.
In Korean the adjective comes before the word that it modifies; in this case it is modifying 머리, meaning head, so together it’s ‘redhead/redheaded’.
앤 means Anne!
English: Anne of Avonlea
Korean: 에이번리의 앤
Korean Translation: Avonlea’s Anne
에이번리 is Avonlea, just written in 한글. -의 is a particle indicating possession, so that turns this into ‘Avonlea’s’.
The thing possessed follows the owner/possessor (same as in English). In this case, the thing being possessed is 앤.
English: Daddy Long Legs
Korean: 키다리 아저씨
Korean Translation: Beanpole Man
I looked up 키다리; literally it means ‘beanpole’, but apparently it is also a word that is used to tease tall people.
아저씨 is an honorific used for an older man. It can be used by males or females. 오빠/형 is used for a guy close to one’s own age, unlike 아저씨.
English: Wuthering Heights
Korean: 폭풍의 언덕
Korean Translation: Storm’s Hill
폭풍 can refer to either a very strong storm, or a strong wind of a storm. It is a similar concept to ‘wuthering’. Once again we have the possesive marker ‘의’.
언덕 is ‘hill’.
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