The difficulty of translation depends on a number of factors. Sometimes the content itself is simply complex and dense. Other times the time crunch can make the work difficult. However, the number one difficulty most translation service professionals struggle with is working with languages that simplydon’t work well together. There are certainly a few that test the skill of our translators. Today, Akorbi will discuss the 4 most difficult language pairs that translation service professionals work with on a day-to-day basis.
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Four Most Difficult Languages to Translate To and From English
- Mandarin Chinese – Probably the most difficult language to translate into English is the most widely spoken language in the world — Mandarin. First, there is a huge difference between the English and the Mandarin alphabet. Mandarin is composed of 80,000 characters, each with unique characteristics, while English has only 26 characters. Additionally, written translation isn’t the only difficulty for language service professionals. Since Mandarin is a tonal language, with every phonetic “letter” having four distinct pronunciations, even interpreting Mandarin as a native English-speaker is a challenge.
- Arabic – Arabic finds itself on this list for a few different reasons. First of all, most letters are written in 4 different forms, depending on where they’re placed within a word. Plus, vowels are not included when writing. As you can imagine, this makes translation service very difficult compared to other languages. To complicate matters, there is a huge variety of dialects within the Arabic language, all of which have a large impact on the diction.
- Polish – While Polish is certainly easier than some of the other languages, it is still a real challenge to translation service professionals. Slavic languages are notoriously difficult for English speakers with their subtle grammatical complexity. Polish stands out with a difficult spelling system which relies heavily on diacritics (marks above and below letters which indicate pronunciation) and seven separate cases that ramp up the difficulty even more. A very complex treatment of gender is the cherry on top that lands Polish as the number three language on our list.
- Thai – Thai is a language that was largely uninfluenced by Western languages, which results in very few shared commonalities with English. The large Thai alphabet’s 44 consonants and 18 vowels make the language quite the challenge for translators. In addition, there are no cases in Thai, the sentences do not end in full stops, there are no plural or gender forms, and there are no spaces between words. As you can imagine, this results in a language that is very difficult to translate.
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Contact Akorbi For Professional Translation Service
Despite these language difficulties, you can rest easy knowing that your translations will be carried out quickly and accurately with Akorbi. Contact us today at 1-877-425-6724 to learn more!