sister

The Greek term that is translated as “sister” in English is rendered “elder sister” in Kahua because the church associated with the apostle John was assumed to be senior.

in childbirth, travail

The phrase that is translated in English versions as “in travail” or “in the pain of childbirth” is rendered in Kahua as “like a woman whose back is cracking.”

worldly people

The phrase that is translated as “worldly people” or “people who are controlled by their natural desires” in English versions is translated into Kahua with the idiom that says “people who follow their noses.”

lion

There are no lions in Bawm country, so the Bawm Chin translation uses “a tiger with a mane” where the Greek term for “lion” is used and in Sranan Tongo the “roaring lion” in 1 Peter 5:8 is a krasi tigri, an “aggressive tiger.”

In the Kahua culture, lions are not known either so the Kahua translation used “fierce animal.”

In 1 Peter 5:8, the Uripiv translation uses “a hungry shark” instead of a roaring lion.

Sources: David Clark for Bawm Chin and Kahua, Japini 2015, p. 33, for Sranan Tongo, and Ross McKerras for Uripiv)

selfish ambition

The term rendered “selfish ambition” in many English versions is translated as “they want to make themselves come out on top” in Kahua. (Source: David Clark)

In Tzeltal it is translated “raise themselves before God.” (Source: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)

object in passive voice construct

In Kahua, it was not possible to omit a grammatical object in the passive voice construct that described that the lame man was carried. The translation added the “wantoks,” i.e. people of the same language group, probably from the same village.

kiss

The Hebrew and the Greek that is usually directly translated as “kiss” in English is translated more indirectly in other languages because kissing is deemed as inappropriate, is not a custom at all, or is not customary in the particular context (see the English translation of J.B. Phillips [publ. 1960] in Rom. 16:16: “Give each other a hearty handshake”). Here are some examples:

  • Pökoot: “greet warmly” (“kissing in public, certainly between men, is absolutely unacceptable in Pökoot.”) (Source: Gerrit van Steenbergen)
  • Chamula Tzotzil, Ixcatlán Mazatec, Tojolabal: “greet each other warmly” or “hug with feeling” (source: Robert Bascom)
  • Afar: gaba tittal ucuya — “give hands to each other” (Afar kiss each other’s hands in greeting) (source: Loren Bliese)
  • Roviana: “welcome one another joyfully”
  • Cheke Holo: “love each other in the way-joined-together that is holy” (esp. in Rom. 16:16) or “greet with love” (esp. 1Thess. 5:26 and 1Pet. 5.14)
  • Pitjantjatjara: “when you meet/join up with others of Jesus’ relatives hug and kiss them [footnote], for you are each a relative of the other through Jesus.” Footnote: “This was their custom in that place to hug and kiss one another in happiness. Maybe when we see another relative of Jesus we shake hands and rejoice.” (esp. Rom. 16:16) (source for this and two above: Carl Gross)
  • Balanta-Kentohe and Mandinka: “touch cheek” or “cheek-touching” (“sumbu” in Malinka)
  • Mende: “embrace” (“greet one another with the kiss of love”: “greet one another and embrace one another to show that you love one another”) (source for this and two above: Rob Koops)
  • Gen: “embrace affectionately” (source: John Ellington)
  • Kachin: “holy and pure customary greetings” (source: Gam Seng Shae)
  • Kahua: “smell” (source: David Clark) (also in Ekari and Kekchí, source: Reiling / Swellengrebel)
  • San Blas Kuna: “smell the face” (source: Claudio and Marvel Iglesias in The Bible Translator 1951, p. 85ff.)
  • Chichewa: “suck” (“habit and term a novelty amongst the young and more or less westernized people, the traditional term for greeting a friend after a long absence being, ‘clap in the hands and laugh happily'”)
  • Medumba: “suck the cheek” (“a novelty, the traditional term being ‘to embrace.'”)
  • Shona (version of 1966) / Vidunda: “hug”
  • Balinese: “caress” (source for this and three above: Reiling / Swellengrebel; Vidunda: project-specific translation notes in Paratext)
  • Tsafiki: earlier version: “greet in a friendly way,” later revision: “kiss on the face” (Bruce Moore [in: Notes on Translation 1/1992), p. 1ff.] explains: “Formerly, kissing had presented a problem. Because of the Tsáchilas’ [speakers of Tsafiki] limited exposure to Hispanic culture they understood the kiss only in the eros context. Accordingly, the original translation had rendered ‘kiss’ in a greeting sense as ‘greet in a friendly way’. The actual word ‘kiss’ was not used. Today ‘kiss’ is still an awkward term, but the team’s judgment was that it could be used as long as long as it was qualified. So ‘kiss’ (in greeting) is now ‘kiss on the face’ (that is, not on the lips).)
  • Kwere / Kutu: “show true friendship” (source: project-specific translation notes in Paratext)

See also kissed (his feet).

flattery

The term that is rendered as “flattery” in English is translated with a Kahua idiom: “We did not bend our heads to please people (i.e., use flattery).”

Dorcas (Δορκάς)

In both Fuyug and Kahua “Δορκάς” (Dorcas) was translated rather than transliterated. It came out as “nanny goat,” which was quite acceptable as people can have animal names, and goats are not regarded with disfavor.

minding one's own affairs

The phrase that is translated as “mind your own affairs” is translated in Kahua with an idiom: “don’t interfere with your noses.”

dual vs. plural (Acts 7:16)

In this episode in Acts it is ambiguous whether only Jacob and Joseph or Jacob and all of the other patriarchs were were taken back to Shechem. In languages that distinguish between a dual and a plural this ambiguity has to be resolved. In the translation into Kahua only two bodies were taken back because Joseph’s body is specifically mentioned in Exod 13:19 and Josh 24:32.