Page 1 of 1

English to Old Norse translation

Posted: 2016-09-24, 9:08
by Kalkalash
Hi everyone!

I'm looking to get two pieces of text translated into Old Norse. I know old and young futhark but I'm not very proficient in the language myself. I did some preliminary translating using Wikipedia, dictionaries and my knowledge of Swedish but I have no idea how correct they are.

The first text is

No gods
or kings.
Only man

which I translated as

Engi tivar
edha gramar
einga menskr

The problem was that both god and king had multiple words, and I didn't know which ones to use. Words like gudh or konungr felt a bit too modern, so I went for tivr and gramr. In old futhark the text would be

The other text is a bit longer. It goes

I won't bow to something that I've never seen
Can't believe in something that doesn't believe in me
I'm not blood of your blood, I'm no son of your god
I've no faith in your fate
Still I find salvation

which I translated as

Ek monka lúta at nog(?) sem ek aldregi sjae
Mákat trúa at nog(?) sem trúrat at mik
Ek emkat blódh af thitt blódh, ek emkat sonr thins áss
Ek ákat trú at thitt hluti
Enn ek finn frelsningr(?)

The ones with the question marks are words that I couldn't find in any dictionary (something and salvation), so I just took the Swedish word and made it sound "Norse". Maybe I should use Icelandic as reference instead?

I appreciate any help, even if it's just correcting simple words. These texts are going to be a part of a tattoo, so having small errors is okay, since I highly doubt I'll run into someone who's able to read it :D

Re: English to Old Norse translation

Posted: 2016-09-24, 15:31
by Eril
I'm far from being an expert, but in the original texts I read so far I only encountered "konungr" and "goð", and none of the alternatives you mentioned. "konungr" is a very old word, it was loaned into Finnish in Germanic times as "kuningaz".
In the second text I would strongly suggest to use "goð" instead of "áss" as the latter is pretty specific.

"hluti" means "part" or "share" - there certainly are better words for "fate" (maybe "forlag", "auðna", "afdrif", "skǫp", "urðr"?). Also, it's not neuter but masculine, so if you were to use it would need to be "þinn" instead of "þitt". Furthermore, why use "at" with "trúa"? It seems to go with dative or "á".

Your spelling also looks quite different from the kind I'm used to. And I don't think I've ever heard of the negation "-(k)a(t)" before - why put not simply "engi" before the verb?

What kind of form is "sjae" supposed to be? "sjá" is an irregular verb, the preterite 1st singular would be "sá", the perfect "hefi sén", I think (not sure about the ending of the participle).

"salvation" can be "heilsa" or "sáluhjalp".
"something" is "nǫkkut".

Re: English to Old Norse translation

Posted: 2017-08-22, 18:21
by Valerian
Hi, so what would be the correct translation of the former text? And what about the correct runes then?