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The Translation Of Difficult And Unknown Words

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines an important aspect of translation technique, the manner in which the translator handles difficult or unknown words. The translator of Amos typically includes a word or more in his translation corresponding to every word in his Vorlage, normally following the order of the Vorlage. Operating on the basis of such a generally literal methodology in these areas he could not avoid difficult words in his Vorlage. When they encountered unknown words their only options were either their own knowledge of Hebrew and Aramaic, exegetical or reading traditions, or perhaps the Pentateuch or other units that were already translated. Emanuel Tov suggests six different types of conjectural readings may be recognized in the LXX: (1) untranslated words, (2) contextual guesses, (3) contextual manipulation, (4) reliance on parallelism, (5) employment of general words, and (6) etymological renderings.

Keywords: Amos; conjectural reading; difficult words; Emanuel Tov; exegetical traditions; LXX; Pentateuch; translation technique; unknown words; Vorlage



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