Publication details [#54521]

Fuertes-Olivera, Pedro A. and Sandro Nielsen. 2011. The dynamics of terms in accounting: What the construction of the accounting dictionaries reveals about metaphorical terms in culture-bound subject fields. Terminology 17 (1) : 157–180.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Language as a subject
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


European accounting terminology is dynamic as term creation and formation occurs on national, European Union and international levels. Although English is the lingua franca of accounting, international accounting standards in English exist on a par with their translations into other languages. However, an analysis of online dictionaries shows that these cannot cope with the dynamic nature of accounting terminology. This paper discusses a network of internet dictionaries in English, Danish, and Spanish that was compiled using the functional approach to specialised lexicography. It shows how terminologists can work in subject fields where culture and context play a key role in the development of nationally accepted and internationally recommended terms, and proposes ways to remedy deficiencies identified in the dictionaries examined. Finally, it discusses strategies for translating English metaphorical terms into Spanish assuming that bilingual accounting dictionaries should use conceptually similar terms in both source and target languages.