Mermaids

Discuss and coordinate development of mainline and user-made content translations.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Mermaids

Post by mpolo »

I have been using Nereiad (sea nymph) to translate mermaid/merman (actually I use an adjective formed from it so as to have male and female versions). Now the new description of the Siren says that she could easily be mistaken for a Naiad (river nymph), which would be really silly for me to translate... I guess I'll just make something up -- comparing her to a sea goddess or something, but the terminology error in the main file should probably be fixed sometime after 1.0.0.

lwa
Inactive Developer
Posts: 271
Joined: June 11th, 2005, 8:19 am
Location: Paris, France

Re: Mermaids

Post by lwa »

mpolo wrote:I have been using Nereiad (sea nymph) to translate mermaid/merman
In which language ? Maybe you misspelled "Nereid" (sea nymphs, childs of the sea god Nereus in greek mythology) ?

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Post by mpolo »

You're right. In English (and in Latin and Greek) there's no "a" in Nereid. (I'm using Nereius and Nereia in the Latin anyway, since we have males and females to differentiate.)

User avatar
turin
Lord of the East
Posts: 11662
Joined: January 11th, 2004, 7:17 pm
Location: Texas
Contact:

Re: Mermaids

Post by turin »

mpolo wrote:but the terminology error in the main file should probably be fixed sometime after 1.0.0.
What terminology error? Merfolk are not sea nymphs, sea nymphs are something different. This is, from what I've seen, consistent with Greek mythology, which the merfolk are based on. (You probably shouldn't translate merfolk to mean sea nymph.)

[edit]
See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nymph, and compare to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mermaid.
For I am Turin Turambar - Master of Doom, by doom mastered. On permanent Wesbreak. Will not respond to private messages. Sorry!
And I hate stupid people.
The World of Orbivm

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Post by mpolo »

The terminology error is that the sirens are being compared to "river nymphs" (naiads), not to "sea nymphs" (nereids) as would be expected. In Latin (and most romance languages) there is no real option here, as mermaid is Germanic and the concept doesn't exist in their mythologies. One of the romance languages wanted to use "sirens", but that was ruined by the 3rd level unit...

In any case, by using the adjective rather than the noun, you could argue that I have "sea-nymphic ones" rather than actual nymphs. (In the same way, my elves are "wood-nymphic ones", and I plan to make the high elves "mountain-nymphic ones" -- the enchantress line already has such names.)

lwa
Inactive Developer
Posts: 271
Joined: June 11th, 2005, 8:19 am
Location: Paris, France

Post by lwa »

In the greek mythology, Nereids are females sea nymphs and live with Tritons (males).

In Wesnoth, Mermen and Mermaids advance to Tritons who are males or females.

Lugo Moll
Posts: 123
Joined: August 1st, 2005, 11:15 am
Location: Sweden

Post by Lugo Moll »

Isn't Triton the roman name for Poseidon?
"Oh, what sad times are these when passing ruffians can say Ni at will to old ladies."
-Roger the shrubber

lwa
Inactive Developer
Posts: 271
Joined: June 11th, 2005, 8:19 am
Location: Paris, France

Post by lwa »

Lugo Moll wrote:Isn't Triton the roman name for Poseidon?
It's Neptun.

scott
Posts: 5242
Joined: May 12th, 2004, 12:35 am
Location: Alexandria, VA

Post by scott »

Triton was a son of Poseidon. I don't know what his name was for the Romans.
Hope springs eternal.
Wesnoth acronym guide.

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Post by mpolo »

Triton is the same in Latin and Greek.

User avatar
turin
Lord of the East
Posts: 11662
Joined: January 11th, 2004, 7:17 pm
Location: Texas
Contact:

Post by turin »

lwa wrote:In Wesnoth, Mermen and Mermaids advance to Tritons who are males or females.
No, because sexes aren't randomly assigned to merfolk. You can recruit a Mermaid Initiate, who is female, or a Merman Hunter, who is male, or a Merman Fighter, who is male. The Fighter is the only one who advances to a Triton.
mpolo wrote: as would be expected. In Latin (and most romance languages) there is no real option here, as mermaid is Germanic and the concept doesn't exist in their mythologies.
I think that you're making a mistake trying to translate Merman to your language. I think it would be preferrable to just make up a word for the race, meaning something like fish-man, or just use 'Merman'. It is IMHO OK for the player not to immediately know what the unit is when looking at the unit name, since they do have the picture. We already kind of do that in the english version, like with Revenant, which I have no clue what it means.
For I am Turin Turambar - Master of Doom, by doom mastered. On permanent Wesbreak. Will not respond to private messages. Sorry!
And I hate stupid people.
The World of Orbivm

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Post by mpolo »

Unfortunately Latin is very unweildy with compound words. For now, I'm leaving it as it is. I already was forced to make up names for all the undead, but they're at least single words. (Ghouls are "pallidi" - the pale ones, while Nightgaunts are "macri noctis" - the lean ones of the night....)

By the way, Revenant is medieval English, derived from Medieval French, derived from Latin Reveniens: "that which comes (or came) back". "Draug" was the one that gave me problems -- it's from Icelandic mythology. I called them "Draugri", since in Icelandic it's Draugr.

Corwin
Posts: 90
Joined: August 17th, 2005, 5:17 pm
Location: California

Post by Corwin »

turin wrote:I think that you're making a mistake trying to translate Merman to your language. I think it would be preferrable to just make up a word for the race, meaning something like fish-man, or just use 'Merman'. It is IMHO OK for the player not to immediately know what the unit is when looking at the unit name, since they do have the picture. We already kind of do that in the english version, like with Revenant, which I have no clue what it means.
Good point. I used to have no idea what a Revenant was without the picture. I think I learned a lot of my less common vocabulary from playing games with pictures associated with uncommon names. Even if the name can't be translated, at least people playing the game would learn a little English. I think it is great that there is so much work on translation of this game.
Corwin

scott
Posts: 5242
Joined: May 12th, 2004, 12:35 am
Location: Alexandria, VA

Post by scott »

Isn't there a group that comes up with new Latin words for modern things? Try asking them what a mermaid would translate to.
Hope springs eternal.
Wesnoth acronym guide.

mpolo
Posts: 113
Joined: June 15th, 2004, 8:18 pm

Post by mpolo »

I have the Vaticans "Wörterbuch des neuen Lateins", but they don't have a listing for "Meerjungfrau". The modern words that get made up are for things that are likely to be used in a modern Latin text, and since most of those come from the Vatican, "Mermaid" is pretty unlikely.

My translation matches the Italian Wesnoth translation "Nereide", while the Spanish uses "siren-like": "sirénida". French makes up a word: "ondine" - I assume that's something like "of the waves"... Portuguese doesn't seem to have translated these yet.

Post Reply