GRIFFIN Translations - Choosing the right translator for the job

About us

Member of the Belgian Chamber of Translators and Interpreters

GRIFFIN Translations has been an independent translation company for twenty years and our involvement in languages dates back over fifty years. Our proven expertise means that we are able to guarantee the highest quality and most accurate translations. From the graduate seeking to have his diploma translated to multinational corporations with global expectations, we bring proven experience to you or your business, helping you to achieve your objectives in local, national and international contexts.

All our translators are members of dedicated associations for practising translation professionals. Our membership helps us to increase our knowledge and awareness of trends and legislation and keep abreast of developments in the field of translation.

The importance of a good translation is most obvious when things go wrong. Translation boners and howlers come from all areas. The American State Department is said to have been at one time disturbed by a memorandum received from the French government beginning with the words. Nous demandons. State Department officials were irate until it was pointed out that the French expression had the modest meaning of we request and not we demand. The original translator almost caused a diplomatic incident. The booklet for the first American cars arriving in Russia recommended using alcohol deprived of its natural qualities for antifreeze and soap made of elephant tusks to wash your car. For many years, Cleveland’s slogan, the Matchless City went around Europe as Cleveland, the City without Matches. Good clean fun has been rendered as divertissement bien nettoyé. Italians got a laugh out of the translation of the British “Home Fleet” (Flotta di casa). Laughable, indeed, but what if the joke is on you? Poor translation dogs even the most well-established companies, offering shoddily, sometimes offensively translated advertising. Language is not merely a means of expression and communication; it is an instrument of experiencing, thinking and feeling … All words can be translated after a fashion, but domestic animal will never carry the true meaning of pet.

When it comes to technical, commercial, or literary translations, each field has its own linguistic domain, and the would-be translator of a technical document must command that technical field as well as the two languages, if he wants to avoid sending out disastrously wrong directions for the use, say, of machinery. “Funny” translations aren’t always all that funny. Read what we say about the importance of native speakers for language translation.

Christopher Griffin

owner

Robert Frost is often misquoted as saying, “Poetry is what gets lost in translation”. Every translation is an interpretative act, as well as a creative one. We work hard to make sure that the translated text evokes the same emotions and maintains the same quality, intent, style and tone in the target language. We will translate your work in its entirety.

Christopher K. Griffin has two published novels to his credit: