Talk:metaphrase

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metaphrase and calque[edit]

I was just wondering if they qualify as synonyms? --BiT 18:39, 14 February 2008 (UTC)

No. Metaphrase is about translating texts word-by-word (such as using original idioms in translated literary works), while calque is about adding to the vocabulary of a language by adopting word-by-word translations of another language as new lexical items. Malhonen 19:20, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
Aah ok, maybe the pages require to be disambiguated about this? From the page I gathered that the word "metaphrase" suggested one word translated, but not a text translated verbatim. --BiT 20:20, 14 February 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, they'd need to be fixed. Actually, metaphrasing can refer to translating just a single idiom or phrase word-by-word, not necessarily the rest of text. The crucial difference is that metaphrases are ad-hoc translations of something in another language, while calques have become part of the native speakers' vocabulary. Neogrammarian is a literal translation of German Junggrammatiker, but it has been adopted in general usage, so it's a calque. Now, if somebody translates German aus einer Mücke einen Elefanten machen as make an elephant out of a mosquito and not make a mountain out of a mole hill, it's a metaphrase, since native speakers of English wouldn't normally say anything about elephants and mosquitoes in this context. Malhonen 12:06, 18 February 2008 (UTC)