沈阳翻译公司:合同翻译的用词特点

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          合同英语的用词极其考究,具有特定性。 要求选词专业化(professional)、正式(formal)、准确(accurate)。具体体现在下列方面:

1. May, shall, must ,may not (或shall not) 的使用 ,May, shall , must ,may not (或shall not)对学过英语的人再熟悉不过,但在合同中用这些词时要极其谨慎。权利义务的约见定部分构成了合同的主体。这几个词如选用不当,可能会引起纠纷。 may 旨在约定当事人的权利(可以做什么),Shall约定当事人的义务(应当做什么时候), must 用于强制性义务(必须做什么),may not (或shall not)用于禁止性义务(不得做什么)。May do 不能说成can do, shall do, 不能说成should do 或ought to do, may not do 在美国一些法律文件可以用shall not,但绝不能用can not do或must not ) 例如,在约定解决争议的途径时的,可以说

The parties hereto shall, first of all, settle any dispute arising from or in connection with the contract by friendly negotiations. Should such negotiations fail, such dispute may be referred to the People's Court having jurisdiction on such dispute for settlement in the absence of any arbitration clause in the disputed contract or in default of agreement reached after such dispute occurs.

本句中的shall 和may表达准确。出现争议后应当先行协商,所以采用了义务性“约定”,如果协商解决不了,作为当事人的权利,用选择性约定may也很妥当。如果may和shall调换位置会怎么样?前半句的shall换用may后,意思变成了当事人可以通过协商解决,意思上说得过去,但后半句的may换用shall 后,变成了应当诉讼解决,好象一出事,就要先见官,这就有些不友好了。本句可译:双方首先应通过友好协商,解决因合同而发生的或与合同有关的争议。如果协商未果,合同中又无仲裁条款约定或争议发生后未就仲裁达成协方的,可将争议提交有管辖权的人民法院解决。

2. 正式用语(formal term) 合同英语有着严肃的风格,与其它英语作品有很大不同。 例如: “因为”的短语多用“by virtue of ",远远多于“due to”一般不用“because of ”; “财务年度末”一般用“at the close of the fiscal year”,而不用“in the end of the fiscal year”; “在……之前”一般用“prior to”,而不用“before”; “关于”常用“as regards”, “concerning”或“relating to”,而不会用“about”; “事实上”用“in effect”,而不用“in fact”; “开始”用“commencement”,而不用“start”或“begin”; “停止做”用“cease to do”,而不用“stop to do”; “何时开会并由某某主持”的表述为:The meeting shall be convened and presided by sb. 其中“召开”不用“hold 或call”,而用“convene”; “主持”不用“chair”或“be in charge of ”,而用“preside”; “其他事项”用“miscellaneous”, 而不用“other matters/events”; “理解合同”用“construe a contract” 或“comprehend a contract”,而不用“understand a contract”; “认为”用“deem”,用“consider”少,不用“think”或“believe”; “愿意做”用“intend to do”或“desire to do”,而不用“want to do”, “wish to do”。
         合同用词不以大众是否理解和接受为转移,它是合同语言准确表达的保障。如合同出现的“瑕疵”、 “救济”、 “不可抗力”、 “管辖”、“损毁”、 “灭失”等就可能让非行业人士费解,在英语以上表达分别为defect、remedy、force majuere/Act of God、jurisdiction、damage and/or loss)。另外几乎每个合同都少不了hereinafter referred to as , whereas, in witness whereof, for and on behalf of , hereby, thereof 等虚词。这也是合同英语的一大特色。 其它例子还有: “赔偿”用“indemnities”,而不用“compensation” “不动产转让”用“conveyance”,而不用“transfer of real estate” “房屋出租”用“tenancy”,而“财产出租”用“lease of property” “停业”用“wind up a business”或“cease (名词是cessation) a business”,而不用“end/stop a business” 专利许可中的“特许权使用费”只用“royalities” 还款或专利申请的“宽限期”英文“grace”, “当事人在破产中的和解”用“composition” 以实物出资为“investment in kind” “依照合同相关规定”一般说“pursuant to provisions contained herein”或“as provided herein”等,不说“according to relevant terms and conditions in the contract” “合同任何一方当事人不得转让本合同”英文表述为“Neither party hereto may assign this contract”,其中“hereto”表示“to the contract”,选用“Neither party to the contract”较少。

3. 同义词、近义词、相关词的序列 FOR value RECEIVED,the undersigned does hereby sell, transfer, assign and set over to ______ all his right, tile and interest in and to a certain contract dated ______, 19____ by and between the undersigned and ______,a copy of which is annexed hereto. 在这里的同义词和近义词并列(如sell, transfer, assign and set over,right和 tile and interest),在英文合同里十分普遍。这是出于严谨和杜绝漏洞的考虑,有的也属于合同用语的固定模式。如: This agreement is made and entered into by and between Party A and Party B.句中“made and entered into”和“by and between”两组分别属于同义词和相关词并列。 For and in consideration of mutual covenants and agreements contained herein, the parties hereby covenant and agree as follows: 句中“for and in consideration of ”, “covenants and agreements”三组同义司和近义词并列。 The parties have agreed to vary the Management on the terms and subject to the conditions contained herein. 这里的“on the terms”和“subject to the conditions”是一个意思都表示“依照本协议的条款规定”。合同条款的固定模式是“terms and conditions” 再例如: “Party A wishes to be released and discharged from agreement as from the effective date”,一句中的“release”和“discharge”意思几乎相同。 并列的词还有: ships and vessels support and maintenance licenses and permits charges, fees, costs and expenses any and all any duties, obligations or liabilities the partners, their heirs, successors and assigns control and management of the partnership applicable laws, regulations, decrees, directives, and rules

4. 拉丁词 在国外合同中,拉丁词仍然是很常见: 比例税率:用pro rate tax rate要比proportional tax rate多 从事慈善性服务的律师:pro bono lawyer,不怎么用lawyer engaged in charitable legal assistance 委托代理人:多用agent ad litem。 合同翻译的第一步——读懂合同文件 一. 理解法律文件中的专门用语 英语中某些副词如“here”及“where”在法律文件中往往当作前缀,与另一个词构成法律词汇中的专门用语。在法律文件中用这些词,可以避免重复,避免误解,避免歧义,使行文准确、简洁。以这种方法构成的词主要有: hereafter, hereby, herein, hereof, hereto hereunder, hereupon, herewith, hereinbefore, hereinafter; thereafter, thereby, therein, thereinafter, thereinbefore, thereon, thereof, thereunder, thereupon, therewith; whereas, whereby, wherein, whereof, whereon, etc。 这些词各有各的含义,笔者只能捡其中几个细说:
比如: 1. Hereby: by means of; by reason of this 之意,即特此,因此,兹等意。常用于法律文件、合同协议的正式文件的开头语,在条款中需要强调时也可用。举原文说明,如: The Employer hereby covenants to pay the Contractor in consideration of the execution and completion of the Works and the remedying of defects therein the Contract Price or such other sum as may become payable under the provisions of the Contract at the time and in the manner prescribed by the Contract. 文中:
★hereby 意为 by reason of this,特此的意思。
★Covenants 是动词,意为make a formal agreement 立约,签订合同。
★ completion of the Works 是工程的竣工,Works与Work 在工程承包合同文件中常指工程而不是工作之意。
★ therein意为in the Works在本工程中。
★the Contract Price指合同总价,指工程的总造价。
★ such…as是关系代词,相当于that, which,把要限定的词置于such 与as之间使要限定的名词十分明确,避免合同双方在理解上发生争议。
★ under 意为in accordance with 根据,按照之意,决不能译成“在…….之下”。
★ the provisions of the Contract: terms and conditions of the contract 合同条件、条款之意。在对文中专业性词汇作了解释之后,就不难理解这一段的含义了,也就是读懂了。于是可以把原文译为: 业主特此立约保证在合同规定的期限内,按合同规定的方式向承包人支付合同总价,或合同规定的其它应支付的款项,作为本工程施工、竣工及修补工程中缺陷的报酬。   

合同中常用的专门用词及词组
1.关于shall与should shall在合同文件中是使用频率最高的词,在合同文件中shall表示强制性承担法律或合同所规定的义务,在表达“应该”或“必须”做某事时,应用“shall”而不能用“ must”或“should”,但有时可用“will”,力度比shall弱。 Should在法律文件中往往作“if”解,只表示“如果”之意。 如: The board meeting shall be called and presided over by the Chairman. Should the chairman be absent, the vice-Chairman shall, in principle, call and preside over the board meeting. 文中:
★ 两个shall,都表示有责任做,应该做之意。
★ Should: If 表示如果。
★ board meeting:董事会会议。
★ preside over:主持。 原文可译为: 董事会会议应由董事长召集、主持;如董事长缺席,原则上应由副董事长召集、主持。

2. Unless otherwise Unless otherwise: 除外。比 “if not”和 “otherwise”表达正式。 该词由两个同义词“ unless” 和“otherwise”组成,otherwise有代词作用,后面一般跟动词的过去分词限定,意为:除非另…….:如“除非合同另有规定”可译为“unless otherwise specified in the Contract”, 又如“除非信用证另有规定”可译为“ unless otherwise specified in the Letter of Credit.” 如: These articles shall apply to documentary credits, including stand by letters of credit, to the extent to which the credits in question shall be applicable, and shall be binding on the Parties to the Contract, unless otherwise expressly agreed by the Parties thereto. 文中:
★ unless otherwise,表示除非合同双方另有约定。
★ these articles 指本条文 ★ apply to 适用,适用于,
★ in question: under consideration; being discussed about 即“在考虑中的或议论中的”某事、某问题,可译成“这”或“该”, 比如“该事项”, 可译为“the matter in question”,这是合同中长用的专业词组。 比如: Party A agrees to acquire from Party B and Party B agrees to transfer to Party A the Patented Technology for contract Products. The Patented Technology in question shall be the same technology as the technology of Party B’s latest products. 文中的the Patented Technology in question 是指前句中的the Patented Technology, 用了in question 就可以省略“在前句中的……”这样一句话,十分简捷鲜明。 例句可译为:甲方同意从乙方获得乙方同意向甲方转让的合同产品的专利技术。这种技术应与乙方最新产品的技术完全一致。
★ Shall be binding on the Parties to the Contract: 对合同各有关方面均具有约束力。 原文可译为: 本条文适用于一切跟单信用证,并包括在其适用范围内的备用信用证,对合同各有关方面均具有约束力,除非另有约定。

3. In accordance with: under; pursuant to 这三个词组都作“根据”,“按照”解,是法律文件中常用的词组,比according to 正式。试看例文: 例1: On the FOB basis, the Buyer shall book shipping space in accordance with the date of shipment specified in the contract. 文中:
★ in accordance with the date of shipment:根据装运日期
★ FOB= Free on board: 船上交货。按照1999年9月国际商会公布的《2000年国际贸易术语解释通则》的规定,采用此术语,卖方将货物在合同指定的装运港装到买方的船上,即完成交货。卖方承担货物越过船舷以前的风险和费用;买方承担其后的风险和费用。采用此术语时,在FOB 后面常要注明装运港名称,如FOB Shanghai.
★ book shipping space: 洽定舱位。 原文可译为: 按照FOB条件,由买方负责根据合同规定的装运日期洽定舱位。 注意:文中的买方或卖方,为合同的专门词汇,都要大写。中译英时需注意这一点。例2: When, under the laws and approval from the relevant authorities, a limited liability company is converted into a company limited by shares, the total amount which shares are converted into shall be equivalent to the amount of the company’s net assets. 文中:
★under the laws:依法,按照法律
★a limited liability company:有限责任公司
★a company limited by shares: 股份有限公司 ★be equivalent to : 相等,相当于
★the amount of the company’s net assets: 公司净资产额 原文则可译为: 有限责任公司依法经批准变更为股份有限公司时,折合的股份总额应当相等于公司净资产额。

4. Provided that Provided that: 但规定,规定;但是,等意。对合同的某一条款需要作进一步规定时或在作规定时语气转折时常用此词组。在中译英时,要学会使用此词组,有时中文字面上并未见“但规定”,或“进一步规定”的字辞,但内含此义,可先将中文作“语内译”,若含有上述两义,应运用“provided that” 词组。例: An irrevocable credit shall be deemed to constitute a definite under taking of the issuing bank. Provided that if the stipulated documents are presented and are complied with the terms, conditions and provisions of the credit, and if the credit provides for sight payment, the payment shall be made or shall be guaranteed to be made. 文中:
★provided that对信用证的承诺性作了进一步规定。
★be deemed 被认为,被称为,视为等,是法律文件中的正式用语,比“ be believed; be considered”正式。 如: In the absence of such indication, the credit shall be deemed to be revocable.可译为:如无该项表示,信用证应视作是可撤销的。
★shall be deemed to constitute a definite undertaking of the issuing bank: 应被子认为构成开证行的确定承诺。
★Irrevocable 是revocable 加否定前缀构成,不可撤销之意。
★The credit provides for sight payment:即期付款信用证。 原文可译为: 不可撤销信用证,应被认为构成开证行的规定承诺。(但规定)如提交了规定的单据并符合信用证条款,并系即期付款信用证时,则进行付款或保证该款的照付。除上述法律文件中常用词组外,还有若干,如in respect of; in respect thereof (关于关于上文已提及的事项);in the event of , in the event that ( 如果;如果……..发生,比when正式);in case, the (the ) case of (如果;万一,一旦,);be liable for; be liable to ( 应付有责任);in Testimony whereof: in Witness whereof (以此为证,特立此证); know all Men by these presents (根据本文件;特此宣布);undersigned: (法律文件末尾的签名者,若前有定冠词the,是指文件签署者的自称;now therefore, (特此;因此,一般与whereas 连用,其后边常跟hereby. 译成“兹”,“特此”)。由于篇幅之限,就不一一细述了。

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