Informazio irabazi eta galerak testu juridiko baten itzulpenean. Usurbill-ko erriyaren ordenanzak (1888)
J.M. Zabaleta


Here the author tries to analyze what information is lost and gained in the translation to Basque of "Bylaws of the town of Usurbil" (1888), one of the few juridical texts in Basque prior to this century.

After briefly outlining the text in question and explaining its special interest, the author goes on to put forward a provisional classification of the different types of losses and of what has been gained in the above mentioned translation, and tries to explain the possible reasons, the concept of the subjacent translation which induced the translator to reelaborate the text in Basque as he has done, as well as the variations which have been derived from it.

He notes three kinds of motives:

  1. Textual organization of text and context, in which no losing or gaining of actual information is produced but is only apparent as only redundant and repetitive information which is shown in a different way in the original text as opposed to the translated one.

  2. The losing or gaining of information caused by the different attitude of the transmitter of the message in relation to the receiver, in the original text and in the translated one. For this reason, a greater simplification of the language is to be found, especially in the few technical words which appear in the original text.

  3. The translator often slips in ideological concepts which do not exist in the original text: estimations expressed in adjectives, or even moral digressions concerning the country's customs.

All this is true, yet bearing in mind that the original and the translated text were meant for the same population, even for the same people; from which it may be deduced that, at least in this case, the translators work may be affected by the different attitude he has of the receiver of his message depending on the language he uses with him.