I did a bit of German translation over the holidays, and I’ve come across a new resource so I thought I might do a quick post.

Dictionaries.  The standard online German-English dictionary that we all use around here is Leo.  It’s saved me tons of time; however, it is not always that good with theological terms.  The other day I came across Dict.cc, and I’ve found it very helpful.  It’s like a wiki-dictionary since users can contribute and vet new definitions.  As such, its beginning to outpace Leo on vocabulary.  In some circumstances, I’ve found it better for looking up phrases as well.  In addition, it provides links to Google, Wikipedia, et al. if it doesn’t have an entry, from which I found several definitions.

Translators.  In the past the best online translator I had found was FreeTranslation.com.  I tried Google’s translator out recently, and it is significantly better than it was a year or two ago, though it still spits out ridiculous things sometimes.  Online translators are not always helpful because they tend to struggle with the same constructions I do (e.g., lassen constructions). 

Vocabulary–Here’s a link back to a German vocab list that I pulled together based on a few sources: German Vocabulary.  One note though, after doing a bit of German over the past three years, I’ve decided that I would have spent less time on learning vocab once I got through the basics and would have spent more time just translating, mostly because you can end up learning a bunch of vocab that is irrelevant.  Rather, I think it’s better to just translate and thus learn words that you’ll actually see.

I don’t spend as much time translating French, but I’ve found WordReference.com to be a handy French-English dictionary.

Do y’all have any other recommendations?

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