Translation Facts: Impacts on History, Economics and Politics
Are you looking for some exciting translation facts? The need for translation is in high demand in the current global economy, but the successful transfer of information globally greatly has impacted several aspects of life throughout history. In fact, the birth of the translation industry and the ability to translate professional and accurate content has changed history, economics, and politics.
This article will take on some translation facts that shape these three core pillars of our society. Translation between the thousands of written languages worldwide is essential for interpersonal and inter-organisational communications, and here is why it’s so important.
Importance of the Translation Profession
The translation facts listed below outline the importance of the industry. The need for translation is deep-rooted, as translating content is how we share information. Cultures rely on preserving history and passing it down through generations through language, international businesses translate documents to trade within foreign markets, and the political landscape has always relied on clear exchanges between governments.
Despite the clear need for translation, not all people have the unique skills and abilities to translate professional content between languages effectively. Fortunately, qualified translators can help! The translation profession has existed for millennia and is only becoming more relevant and critical. Today, the transfer of information across the globe is possible in seconds.
Although translation technology is advancing, it is still not a match for the innate ability of the human brain. And unfortunately, the extinction of languages is a significant concern for language scholars and practitioners worldwide. Several known “last native speakers” of languages are now ageing in their 80s and 90s. The race to download their vocabularies, semantics and linguistic intricacies is on.
Top 10 Translation Facts
The translation facts listed below summarise the tremendous ongoing importance and influence of translation over the ages:
- Pronounced tran(t)s-ˈlā-shən, the word “translation” is derived from the Latin word “translationis.” In modern times, the definition has become “a rendering from one language to another or the product of such a rendering.”
- Individuals have been translating written content since 2,000 BCE. Note: Verbal interpretation pre-dates written translation.
- The most common types of translated content are books, communications, professional documents, government papers, promotional materials, and (more recently) websites.
- The most translated text in the world is the Bible. Parts of the Bible have been translated into 3,415 languages, and Wycliffe Bible Translators intend to translate professional copies into every language by 2038.
- The other most translated texts in history are the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human (500+ languages) and the Jehovah’s Witnesses website (600+ languages).
- Currently, there are 7,000 living languages in the world. With a world population of 7.7 billion, the need for translation services is endless.
- The most spoken languages worldwide are Chinese, Spanish, English, Arabic and Hindi. However, the most commonly translated languages are English, French, German, Russian and Italian. Note: According to UNESCO’s Index Translationum database.
- The translation industry expanded to $56 billion in 2021, with an estimated 330,000 professional translators worldwide. Considering the number of freelancers, the actual number is likely significantly higher.
- The industry has its own internationally-recognised day of celebration. International Translation Day falls on the 30th of September each year, honouring the death of the Patron Saint of Translation, St Jerome.
- There are numerous accounts of the costs of mistranslations. A notable example is the bombing of Hiroshima, which was due to mistranslated communications between governments.
Renaissance Translations’ Professional Translation Services
As you’ve learnt from these translation facts, the language services sector is huge. And it’s only getting bigger! With the current globalised economies and multicultural societies, the need for translation will only increase. Those who don’t translate professional documents may struggle to survive and effectively communicate in the modern world.
If you need a professional translation, we can help! Renaissance Translations has a network of over 5,000 professional native-speaking translators competent in translating content to and from over 120 languages. Regardless of your industry, project scope or topic, we have the resources you can trust to exceed your expectations.
Your partnership with Renaissance Translations comes with professional memberships such as ATC and SDL LSP Partner Programme. Let’s discuss your translation project today! Contact our team or learn more about our services on our website.