Part 2: Ways of Conveying the Meanings of Polysemantic Language Units

Part 2: Ways of Conveying the Meanings of Polysemantic Language Units

Part 1: Ways of Conveying the Meanings of Polysemantic Language Units

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:

Now, of course, there was as much business in machine tools at least as there had been in 1929, what with this European stuff going on. (M. Wilson)

Зараз, звичайно, роботи вистачає, на станки попит не менший, ніж 1929 року, адже он які події розгортаються в Европі.

But what happens when he gets to the heavy stuff? And it’s the heavy stuff we’re interested. (Ibid.)

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

Оh, stuff it up your nose!one of the companions said. (D.Carter)

“Заткни пельку/замовкни!” – гримнув один із тієї компанії.

“Then I’ll finish up the grids and get ready for the run just as I was going to do.(Ibid.)

“Тоді я закінчу з захисними сітками і приготую їх до досліду, який я саме й мав намір проводити…”

“… I am going to give young Dr.Anthony Haviland the run of his goddamn life.” (Ibid.)

“… Я цьому молодому докторові Ентоні Гевіленду дам такої нагінки. що він усе життя пам’ятатиме.”

Lately, we’ve had a run of shocking bad luck at the Depart­ment. (Cronin)

Останнім часом ми отримали кілька відмов у міністерстві.

Their stores were already rurt ning low. (Stevenson)

У них уже закінчувалися (завершувалися) запаси продуктів.

“They seem to be running wild”- (J.AIdridge)

“Вони, здається, готують бунт” ( щоб 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 functional 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 co-ordinate conjunction i or the implicit meaning of the subordinate conjuction оскільки/тому. (Why could he not leanr 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:

“Не is but а boy!(R.AIdington)

“Та ж він ще хлопчина/ дитина!”

All of us but a few have come to this conclusion. (G.Greene)

Ми всі, за винятком/крім небагатьох, прийшли до цього висновку.

But for his open eyes, he might have been asleep. (Glasworthy)

Якби очі не були розплющені, можна було подумати, що він спить.

The contextual environment of but, 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 тижня, 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 його 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 закінчили 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 того ще 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.