Public signs, language and fun

February 11, 2014

Public signs in countries around the world can tell a fascinating story of their own, and a lot of funny blogs have been written to highlight bad translations in particular. One such sign below is a very bright example of when translations don’t just look funny, they are, in fact, unprofessional.

A road sign in Vladivostok

 

On my very short trip to Russia this month I came across a rather amusing sign in one of Moscow’s restaurants. It drew its visitors’ attention to foul language, giving a definition of what it is, how people could be potentially prosecuted for its use under Russian legislation, and asked customers to refrain from using swear words in this friendly restaurant.

Notice in a Moscow restaurant

 

In one of my blogs last year where I shared my observations of the modern Russian language from my previous trip to Russia, I pointed out how punctuation rules were being disregarded more and more. Sadly this month I discovered more instances of what would previously be unacceptable and a sure sign of reduced literacy. For instance, where is the comma in this sign, great it might be in promoting reading and studying:

On the importance of reading books

 

Or another notice written on the back of the seats of a well-known air carrier:

A missing comma 


Russian is a very colourful language with quite a few homographs (words which have the same spelling but a different meaning, often with the word stress making the difference), here is one sign which can be easily misread, especially by learners of Russian:

Nutcracker

Language is fun! :)

 

[Tip: Use our professional Russian translation service, tel.: 0207 043 6940, email: enquiry@talkrussian.com.]

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