Rare Book Monthly

Articles - March - 2014 Issue

Making Translations Easier

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Before and after – click the “Translate” button at the top to translate text.

The Americana Exchange is the world's greatest source for listings and results from auctions in the field of books, ephemera, and works on paper. This site tracks over 150 auction houses, posts listings before the sale, and posts results afterward. Listings can be readily found by keyword via the site's search engine. These services are offered free. Paid subscribers also gain access to the AE Database, containing over 5 million records, mostly from past auctions, from a few days to over a century old.

 

Those familiar with this site will also know that “Americana” is a misnomer, a name left over from another time. The site tracks auctions all over the world. Auctions followed aren't limited to the English-speaking world, though auctions are tracked from the U.S., England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and South Africa. Other auctions followed come from lands where other languages are spoken – France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark, Austria, Spain, Belgium, and Mexico. Most of the listings at these auctions, and some in English-speaking lands as well, are not written in English. However, descriptions of these lots may be of interest to you. Researchers using the AE Database, in particular, may need to understand the descriptions. This won't be easy if you do not speak the language.

 

This brings us to one of those wonders of modern technology – Google Translate. It isn't perfect. Indeed, it isn't. Nonetheless, it can usually manage to be decent. Considering what it has to do, it can be downright amazing. More often than not, you will come away with a reasonable understanding of what is being said.

 

I have used it for years, and for years I have opened up the Google Translate page in a separate window, copied entries from the AE Database or auction listings, and pasted them on the Google page. It is a bit of a nuisance, particularly if you are looking through a lot of listings.

 

A while back, Google updated its Chrome browser to provide this option automatically. It saves a lot of time. The option to translate is right there when you go to the listings. Click a button and it's done. No copying, no pasting.

 

However, you do need to use the Chrome browser. I have long used Firefox myself, and Internet Explorer is still the most popular browser. Nonetheless, if you are looking for convenience in translating auction listings, or anything else for that matter, this is one time when using Google Chrome is a definite plus. It will save you much time. The same applies if you are visiting websites in another language. The ability to translate on the spot is very handy.

 

Google can usually figure out what the language is you wish to translate. If not, it is easy enough to choose. Now Google is not perfect. Sometimes it does not realize the listing is in a language foreign to you. You may have to go to the Google Translate page if it can't figure this out. Sometimes listings are written in multiple languages, and this can throw Google off. However, I find that most of the time Google recognizes it is a different language, knows which language it is, and offers the option to translate it. Technology is wonderful.

 

To download the Google Chrome browser, click the following link: www.google.com/chrome


Posted On: 2014-03-01 22:22
User Name: kenpa

Michael- What listings are you talking about? And what do you click on for translations. Sorry, I just can't seem to locate it.
Kenny


Posted On: 2014-03-01 23:19
User Name: AE244155

Kenny,

I was specifically discussing listings in the AE Bibliographic Database, but this applies to any page on any site. Most people are familiar with Google Translate, where you copy text, paste it into Google Translate, and then translate it. But, with Google's Chrome browser, that often isn't necessary. If you click on the image with this article, it will enlarge enough to read it. It is an individual record from the AE Database in German, reached with Google Chrome. On the left, at the top of the page, you will see that Google has asked whether you want to translate the page. On the right, you see the result if you click "translate." Chrome will do this automatically with any page in a foreign language. Sometimes it doesn't give you the option, which I think reflects it not being sure what the language is, but usually it gives you the option to translate at the top, and with one click you can convert it to English (or something like English) or whatever other language you prefer.

Mike


Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Francis Scott Key, <i>Star Spangled Banner,</i> first printing, c. 1814-16. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> William Sydney Porter, a.k.a. “O. Henry,” archive of drawings made to illustrate a lost mining memoir, c. 1883-84. $30,000 to $40,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> [Bay Psalm Book], printed for Hezekiah Usher of Boston, Cambridge, c. 1648-65. $50,000 to $75,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Book of Mormon, first edition, Palmyra, 1830. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>Noticia estraordinario,</i> probable first announcement in Mexico City of the fall of the Alamo, 1836. $40,000 to $60,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Patrick Gass, first edition of earliest first-hand account of the Lewis and Clarke expedition, Pittsburgh, 1807. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Diploma from the Princeton Class of 1783, commencement attended by Washington & Continental Congress. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>Sprague Light Cavalry!</i> color-printed broadside, NY, 1863. $5,000 to $7,500.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> <i>The Lincoln & Johnson Union Campaign Songster,</i> Philadelphia, 1864. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Lucy Parsons, labor organizer, albumen cabinet card, New York, 1886. $800 to $1,200.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Daniel L.F. Swift, journal as third mate on a Pacific Whaling voyage, 1848-1850. $3,000 to $4,0000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 10:</b> Two photos of Thomas Moran, Grand Canyon, silver prints, 1901. $1,500 to $2,500.
  • <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Helvelius. Two Autograph Letters Signed to Francis Aston, Royal Society Secretary, noting his feud with Robert Hooke, 5 pp total, 1685. $70,000 to $100,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Newton, Isaac. Autograph manuscript on God, 4 pp, c.1710, "In the beginning was the Word...."?$100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. First edition, first issue. Untrimmed copy in contemporary boards. $30,000 to $50,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Lincoln, Abraham. Signed photograph, beardless portrait with Civil War provenance. $80,000 to $120,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> IMPEACHMENT. Original engrossed copy of the first Andrew Johnson impeachment resolution vote. $120,000 to $180,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Mucha, Alphonse. 11 original pencil drawings for?<i>Andelicek z Baroku,</i> "Litte Baroque Angel," Prague, 1929. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Einstein, Albert. Annotated Galley Proofs for <i>The Meaning of Relativity.</i> 1921. $25,000 to $35,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Silverstein, Shel. Original maquette for <i>The Giving Tree,</i> 34 original drawings. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Roth, Philip. Typed Manuscript with substantial autograph corrections for an unpublished sequel to <i>The Breast.</i> $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> Taupin, Bernie. Autograph Manuscript, the original draft of lyrics for Elton John's "Candle in the Wind," 2 pp, 1973. $100,000 to $150,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> HARVEY, WILLIAM. <i>De Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus Anatomica Exercitatio.</i> Padua: 1643. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 6:</b> CESALPINO, ANDREA. <i>Peripateticarum Quaestionum Libri Quinque.</i> Venice: 1571. $30,000 to $40,000.

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