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Just joking: Can puns be translated?

Just joking: Can puns be translated?Going through the library of great content at our sister site, www.MultilingualWebmaster.com, I came across this gem of an article on how complicated it is to correctly translate puns.

And it's no wonder: Since puns deliberately exploit confusion between similar-sounding words for humorous effect, it would seem that adapting them to the target culture is the appropriate course to take.

Some of the masters of adapting puns are the folks involved in writing and translating the Astérix and Obélix comic books and movies. Lingual Fun has a good story about managing text expansion and translating characters' names so that the absurdity and fun was maintained. For example, the dog of Obélix, Idéfix (idée fixe, obsessed with something or some idea) is translated to Dogmatix (from 'dogmatic', and the dog prefix is very funny).

So, if you're feeling adventurous, try translating the following:
   "Don't you know the King's English?"
   "No Sir, is he?"


And if you have a few more minutes, why don't you take a look at other articles that we've written?


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