Publication details [#6021]

Wong, Wang Chi. 1997. 重釋「信、達、雅」──論嚴復的翻譯理論 ['Xin, Da, Ya': on Yan Fu’s translation theories]. Journal of Translation Studies 1 : 36–62.
Publication type
Article in jnl/bk
Publication language


Despite many studies on Yan Fu, one of the most important translators of the late Qing, the true meaning of Xin, Da, and Ya, the terms used by Yan to explain the difficulties in translation, has not been properly understood. By analyzing Yan’s own writings, he argues, against common belief, that the three terms are closely related and directed towards one goad: faithfulness to the original, but a 'faithfulness' that takes into consideration the standard of the readers, who were ignorant of the West, Yan had to resort to various means to put across the ideas of the originals. The paper also attempts to situate Yan’s translations and his theories in the historical context, relating them to the socio-political situation of the time. This helps to better understand the general translation trend in the late Qing, when people considered translation a means of national salvation.
Source : Based on abstract in journal