15 Interesting Facts on Translation and Interpretation

In this era of globalization, the demand for translation and interpretation is growing by the day. Be it for medical practices or in international business collaborations, professional language services have become the need of the hour. Let’s find out some of the interesting facts and statistics on language translation and interpretation.

  1. Although this has been a debatable topic for most of the linguistic experts, the Ethnologue catalog of world language estimates a total of 6909 living languages in the world which collectively account for 94% of the world population.
  2. Reportedly, Bible is the most translated book in the world. According to latest reports, the full Bible has been translated into 670 languages. The New Testament is translated into 2191 languages. Bible excerpts and stories are translated into 1121 languages.
  3. The little Prince is the most translated fictional work in the world with over 300 translations across the world, followed by Pinocchio which is translated into 260 languages till date.
  4. 30thSeptember is commemorated as International Translation Day. Interestingly, this day is also celebrated as the Feast of St. Jerome who was one of the first literary figures to translate the Bible into Latin
  5. About 1% of consumers are estimated to spend their time dedicatedly on websites in their own language.
  6. About 5% of users are more likely to purchase a product with information in their vernacular language.
  7. A substantial part of global consumers believes their ability to gather information in their own language is more important than the price of the product.
  8. According to Department of Labor in the US, by 2024 the translation and interpretation industry is touted to grow by about 29%.
  9. It is estimated that at least 350 languages are spoken in the US. English is the most spoken language, followed by Spanish, Chinese, and French.
  10. Translation and interpretation are expected to be one of the fastest growing professions out of the top 15 occupations in the US.
  11. Geoffrey Chaucer is amongst the first English translators who have produced high-quality English poems.
  12. Mandarin is considered to be the most difficult language to learn followed by Arabic, Japanese, and Hungarian.
  13. According to UNESCO, the works of Agatha Christie is most translated followed by Jules Verne and William Shakespeare.
  14. “Happy Birthday to You” is the most translated song followed by “It’s a Small World”.
  15. English is the most commonly requested language for translation followed by French, German, and Italian.
  16. Translators who translate from English to the Korean language are apparently the highest paid.

Also Read: 10 Translation Fails to Prove the Need for Professional Service  

Sources: Ethnologue, Wikipedia, Bureau of Labor Statistics, United States Census Bureau, Russian Translator

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