The Greek that is translated as “parable” in English is translated in other languages in a number of ways:
See also image and figures of speech.
Following are a number of back-translations of Mark 13:28:
- Uma: “‘Consider what I teach to you with the parable of the ara tree. When you see its leave bud and it sends-out-shoots, you know that it is almost the dry days.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
- Yakan: “‘Observe the tree igira,’ said Isa. ‘When it’s leaves are sprouting you know that it will soon be the warm season.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
- Western Bukidnon Manobo: “Think about the parable of the fig tree. Here in our place if the branches sprout out and put forth leaves, we know that the dry season is about to come.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
- Kankanaey: “Then Jesus said, ‘Think about the fig (loan igos) tree so that’s what-you -will-learn-from. When its branches are flowing-with-sap and it leafs, you expect that rainy-season is near.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
- Tagbanwa: “You must try-to-understand and study the igos tree, that when it buds and sprouts leaves, you know that hot season is near.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
Like many languages (but unlike Greek or Hebrew or English), Tuvan uses a formal vs. informal 2nd person pronoun (a familiar vs. a respectful “you”). Unlike other languages that have this feature, however, the translators of the Tuvan Bible have attempted to be very consistent in using the different forms of address in every case a 2nd person pronoun has to be used in the translation of the biblical text.
As Voinov shows in Pronominal Theology in Translating the Gospels (in: The Bible Translator 2002, p. 210ff.), the choice to use either of the pronouns many times involved theological judgment. While the formal pronoun can signal personal distance or a social/power distance between the speaker and addressee, the informal pronoun can indicate familiarity or social/power equality between speaker and addressee.
Here, Jesus is addressing his disciples, individuals and/or crowds with the formal pronoun, showing respect.
In most Dutch translations, Jesus addresses his disciples and common people with the informal pronoun, whereas they address him with the formal form.