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19Sep/14

Atlas – Word of the day

The Greeks and their story telling has contributed a great deal to the development of mythology and has given a lot to the English language. What is not generally known is that the “classics” as we now know them were virtually unknown in England until the time of Shakespeare. With the desire for new knowledge, there was interest in other cultures which led to the quick development of the English language.
The development of the word atlas is an example of this. In Greek mythology Atlas was a Titan who annoyed the gods. As an extraordinarily strong person, his punishment was to support the whole world. In English, it was first used to praise for example by describing someone as the “Atlas of poetry”.

However, from 1636 this meaning disappeared into the background where it stayed. This is because in the same year the Atlas; or a geographic description of the world, by Gerard Mercator and John Hondt was published, which was a collection of maps. The spread of the word was propelled by the fact that the cover page had a huge drawing of Atlas supporting the heavens, and so the word immediately took up its new meaning. In his famous diaries John Evelyn recalls only five years later that he went shopping for maps and atlases.

Now just as postcards, guidebooks or stamps, the atlas in its book form is being squeezed by the internet.

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18Sep/14

1st Annual Wine Reception

Ambience and Pure Enjoyment
at the 1st Annual Wine Reception
Hosted by EVS Translations USA in Atlanta

Wine Reception Atlanta

1st Annual Wine Reception
Hosted by EVS Translations USA in Atlanta

As a special gesture of gratitude, EVS Translations USA  is inviting business partners and friends to its first annual wine reception, where they can spend some time and savor the fruit of the vine.

The exclusive wine tasting will take place on Wednesday, September 24, 2014, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the lobby of the company’s office building:

260 Peachtree Street NW
Atlanta, GA 30303

On the evening of the event, guests will enjoy a variety of wines from Germany and Bulgaria.
The wines will be accompanied by a wide selection of European hors d’oeuvres.

Edward Vick, founder and CEO of the EVS Translations group, is looking forward to the event with anticipation: “For me personally, community events of this kind always have a special significance. The aim is not only to thank our partners for their business but also to maintain our personal relations, which have been the center of our business model since the very beginning.”

Contact:
Contact name: Dr. Florian Schwieger, Head of Marketing and Business Development Manager
Phone: +1 404-523-5560
E-mail: florian.schwieger(at)evs-translations.com
http://www.evs-translations.com

 

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18Sep/14

Dreamcatcher – Word of the day

Dreamcatcher - Word of the day - EVS Translations

Dreamcatcher - Word of the day - EVS Translations

The dreamcatcher is a traditional Native American charm which is widely available nowadays. Perhaps some of our readers have a dreamcatcher hanging above their beds, as an interior decoration – maybe even believing in the charm's supernatural powers. These charms are sometimes produced with natural feathers, beads, leather or other cheaper materials, and sold by creative merchants dressed in Native American costumes or discount stores.

 

Dreamcatchers originate from the traditions of the Ojibwe people (also called Chippewa) - one of the largest groups of Native Americans and First Nations on the North American continent. The Pan-Indian Movement during the second half of the 20th century spread the Ojibwe dreamcatchers to other Native American communities and later over the Atlantic. In the Ojibwe language the charm is called asabikeshiinh, which describes the charm's spider-web shape and is also a reference to the mythical Spider Woman known as Asibikaashi – a character from Ojibwe legends who took care of the children and people on the land.

The Ojibwe people believe that a dreamcatcher has the power to protect against disease and that it can change a person's dreams by catching all of the bad ones to let only the good dreams pass through its holes, down the soft feathers and into a person’s sleep. In 1976, California's oldest newspaper the Mountain Democrat published a description of a dreamcatcher as part of Mendocino County Museum's exposition. It describes this charm as a "queer, woven device…[which] was hung in every tepee of Chippewa villages...".

If you are prone to bad dreams, don’t panic and get yourself a dreamcatcher to ensure a sound night’s sleep. If you wake up and life still seems like a bad dream, however, take comfort in the mantra of Stephen King’s novel of the same name: "Same Shit, Different Day".

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17Sep/14

Panic – Word of the day

Greek mythology has given a lot to the English language. However, virtually no one in England had ever read these myths until 1600. Up until this time, the key work of literature which fed the English language was the Bible. With the Renaissance, however, came renewed interest in the classics and this subsequently lead to further enrichment of the English language.

This is also the story of panic. Panic was first used as an adjective relating to Pan, the Greek god of nature, and there is a description of a man hunt which was conducted with “Panic cries and laughter”. However, very soon the word became synonymous with the wildness and terror that the Greeks thought occurred when Pan was around. Philemon Holland was a great English translator who EVS Translations describes in another blog. In a translation of one of the work's of Plutarch in 1603 he describes “foolish frights” or “panic terror” which occurs without any reason. The word panic appears quite frequently as a word in poetry and prose. An interesting use is in the poem The First Anniversary of the Government Under O.C. by the seventeenth century poet and politician Andrew Marvel:

            And all about was heard a panic groan,

           As if that natures self were overthrown.

Now panic is regarded as a standard human feeling which occurs frequently, including during public events. It is part of collective behaviour and good city planning ensures obstacles are in place to ensure that collective panic attacks do not lead to death and injury. The best thing of course is to follow the advice of Douglas Adams (The Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy): “Don't Panic” - sometimes easier said than done.

 

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16Sep/14

Kotatsu – Word of the day

The kotatsu is the name of a wonderful piece of furniture found in many Japanese homes, though perhaps more common in houses now rather than smaller city apartments. It is a square shaped low level table – almost like a large coffee table – that the family sits around using thin cushions placed on the floor as seats. The table top is removed to expose another surface with a small electric heater on its underside. A large, duvet-like blanket is placed on top of this and the table top is replaced fixing the blanket in place. The electric heater on the underside is used to warm everyone’s legs, though because this presents a significant fire-hazard, people often choose alternative ways to heat the kotatsu such as the use of an electric floor rug, the warmth from which is trapped under the blanket.

William Elliot Griffis, an American Minister, lecturer and author who worked as a teacher in Japan in the 19th century wrote an account of Japan’s history and culture in his book “The Mikado’s Empire” in 1876. In it he makes reference to a kotatsu in a house where he lodged saying, “I got up, entered the best room in the house, and curled up under a kotatsu”. At this point in history, the system for heating the kotatsu was a pit dug out in the floor with smoldering charcoal in the centre – not something anyone these days would want to risk curling up under.

Kotatsu in Japanese homes

But despite its dubious safety standards in the past, the kotatsu is still enjoyed in Japanese homes all over the country today and provides a pleasant social space for the family. Since Japanese houses are heated by air conditioners, installed only in the main rooms, winters are characterized by painfully cold dashes to the bathroom (thank goodness for Japanese heated toilet seats) or even worse, runs from the bathroom to the bedroom after a shower. Because of this, there really is nothing like the relief of curling up under the warm kotatsu. This is where you enjoy the evening meal with your family, everyone with legs tucked under the blanket, and once you have finished, it’s time to lie back on the floor cushions, pull the blanket up over your body and relax.

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16Sep/14

Alive with Science

Bioscience translations UK

Bioscience translations - EVS Translations UK

Several decades ago, the British Midlands were known for one thing: vehicle factories. Though the factories have long gone and the Midlands have been through a rough economic period, it now appears that a new, technologically advanced industry is rediscovering the area around Nottingham. Over the last decade or so Nottingham has emerged as the bioscience and pharmaceutical capital of Britain’s North.

At first glance, Nottingham seems to lack the gravitational pull of typical medical and scientific hubs, such as Atlanta in the United States (check our article: The medical technology hub of the New South). However, what it may lack in size and global reach, Nottingham makes up for in links to research universities and community involvement. British industry heavyweights GlaxoSmithKline and Astra-Zeneca extensively and routinely partner with the University of Nottingham to form a symbiotic and productive connection between research and retail. Mutually beneficial, the partnership between corporations and universities not only guarantees companies access to cutting edge research and a well-educated future workforce already familiar with the products and processes of a company, but, in turn, secures funding for notoriously underfinanced educational institutions. Secondly, Nottingham lures corporate investment through collaborative creations such as BioCity and MediCity, a complete package of services tailored to the specific needs of bioscience companies, including legal and funding assistance as well as access to facilities and infrastructure.

The results seem are speaking for themselves:

  • Including the new location in Scotland, Nottingham’s BioCity is now home to over 80 bioscience companies.

  • The European Lead Factory, an industry-wide collaboration to speed the development of new drugs, awarded €6.2 million in funding to the City of Nottingham.

  • 47% of UK bioscience companies formed in the last 5 years were formed at an incubation site like Nottingham’s.

  • Companies in Nottingham’s BioCity have received more than £40 million in venture capital funding.

Without a doubt, Nottingham’s strategy is working; however, there are certain issues that need to be addressed. As the saying goes, there is a whole world outside of the UK. While incubation is good for giving a business guidance as well as getting it off the ground and granting a first taste of success, in order to be successful on the next, the international level, a bioscience business has to be able to navigate the sea of restrictions and “red tape” that accompany global distribution while appealing to an international client base in their own language and culture. In order to do this as efficiently and effectively as possible, a business that desires international reach needs to partner with a reliable translation company that has the experience and global reach to meet its needs.

If you are a bioscience company with an increasing demand for language services, EVS Translations is your ideal partner.

Our UK office is located in Nottingham, directly in the heart of the bioscience capital of Britain’s North.

We have more than 20 years of experience with medical and bioscience translations and can service more than 20 languages in-house. Place all of your bioscience translation needs into our steady hands and access new markets. EVS Translations provides specialist translations of bioscience brochures, marketing materials, CT protocols, research studies and related materials for corporate partners from the UK, U.S., Germany, Israel, France, England, Russia, Korea, and Japan.

Contact us today to discuss your bioscience translations projects.

Learn more about how we can help you successfully grow your business and give us a call TODAY:
+44-115-9 64 42 or send us an email: quoteuk(at)evs-translations.com.

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15Sep/14

Tantalizing – Word of the day

Greek and Roman myths and the many words associated with them came into the English language as a result of translation. The Renaissance was a time when the classics were rediscovered and this revolution of thought also fed its way into the English language.

Tantalus annoyed the Greek gods. As a punishment he was sent to the equivalent of hell. There he stood in a pool of water with delicious fruit above his head. When he bent over to get a drink, the water receded. When he tried to pick the fruit, the branches moved back. This later became a tantalizing experience. The object of desire was so close, but there was never any satisfaction.

The first reference in English was in one of Chaucer’s first works – The Book of the Duchess (1369).. Again and again Chaucer refers to suffering and grief. The result is that “I have more sorrow than Tantalus”.  The tantalizing experience of the fruit almost in the mouth and then quickly withdrawn is the punishment for greed which is described by John Gower in Tales of the Seven Deadly Sins (1390), the suffering in hell called “the woeful pain of Tantalus”

It was only 200 years later than tantalizing appeared as a verb. Robert Tofte, translator and poet, a contemporary of Shakespeare and the first man to quote him in print. He talks of being tantalized by his lover. And it was another 200 years before tantalizing was used in normal language without reference to Tantalus. James Cook writes that he would have been tantalized if he could only have looked at a city and not enter it while the Duke of Wellington was also tantalized by the enemy being so close and he not being able to attack.

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12Sep/14

Carrot – Word of the day

Among other things William Turner interested in herbs. His first book, which came out in 1538, was entirely in Latin Libellus de re herbaria novus  (The New Little Book About Plants). However, he does translate a plant here and there – such as wild carrot. This is first time the word carrot is used in English. In a later work, he provides a little more information, i.e. that carrots grow in all countries in plenty. So the carrot was a relatively common plant in England at the time. This becomes obvious because at more or less the same time, Thomas Elyot writes about the properties of the carrot in a popular guide to medicine. He states that parsnips and carrots provide better nourishment than other root plants.

Originally the carrot was grown for medical purposes, and it is certainly still good for health. This is confirmed by modern science. No fat, no cholesterol, lots of vitamin A and only 41 calories per 100 grams, good for vision, teeth, a strong antiseptic, the carrot is certainly a useful part of any diet.

Now the carrot is one of the most important crops globally, with 16 million tonnes being produced at the last count. China is the world’s biggest producer, with a world share of 45%.

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11Sep/14

Onsen – Word of the day

Onsen is the Japanese word for natural hot springs which can be found all over the country and are enjoyed as a way to unwind by people of all ages. The word was first written down in English when the English Clergyman Walter Weston wrote his book Mountaineering in the Japanese Alps in 1896. Weston popularized mountain hiking as a hobby in Japan and describes an onsen that he visited during one of his mountaineering trips: “After a day’s rest in the romantic surroundings of the Onsen, I started in the small hours of the morning for the summit of the 'Dragon Peak’”.

The onsen is a huge part of Japanese culture and you probably won’t find a Japanese person who doesn’t enjoy relaxing in these steaming hot pools of natural mineral water. Many hotels and traditional inns offer onsen for their guests which might be indoor, outdoor or a combination of both, and onsen owned by the local municipalities are also widespread and inexpensive. Outdoor onsen are particularly relaxing because of their natural settings where all you have to do is sit back against the rocks and watch the night sky above.

Key points to remember for an onsen trip are: you must shower and shampoo your hair in the communal washing areas by the pools before entering and you can’t use onsen if you have a tattoo since body art is still somewhat taboo in Japan. Also, for a country that has a reputation for being conservative, it may come as a surprise to some that this is an activity carried out completely naked. It’s only the foreign tourists that you will find tip toeing about with strategically placed hand towels, which can sometimes be considered a little rude, but as a foreigner at on onsen, you inevitably draw a small amount of curiosity. It’s best to forget any physical inadequacies, however, and enjoy the experience. The chemical properties are believed to be good for a range of ailments and the intense heat is deeply relaxing. Japanese people, who have been brought up with onsen, will stay in the poolsfor long stretches, but for those who are not used to the intense temperatures, larger onsen facilities have a mixture of cold, tepid and hot onsen, which is ideal.

 

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10Sep/14

Belle époque – Word of the day

The term belle époque- the literal translation from French is “Beautiful Era- was coined to describe the period from the end of the Franco-Prussian War (1871) to the start of World War 1 (1914). An era characterized by cultural and artistic vitality, new technology and scientific progress, peace, optimism and prosperity – a golden age.

The term loosely equates to the phrase “Gilded Age” (a term coined in 1873 by Mark Twain in The Gilded Age: A Tale of Today) often used to describe the same historical period in the United States. The era was, in fact a time of prosperity all across Europe and the West. The British Empire, for example, extended its domination in the late 19th century to include more than one fourth of the landmass and population of the earth. While Britain remembers the time period as an age of imperial expansionism, the Gilded Age for Americans and Germans meant first and foremost technological advancement and economic progress.

In France, the historical memory of the era is defined more so by cultural and artistic innovations.  Especially the French aristocracy and the growing French newly rich elite spent the belle époque in a pursuit of beauty, luxury and culture. This was the era of the Lafayette department store, the Theatre des Champs-Elysees, Opéra Garnier,Moulin Rouge and Paris Casino. The Bohemian lifestyle of the Parisian elite was fueled by champagne and spent at Maxim's restaurant, in the cabarets of Montmartre or the French Riviera.

Belle époque and art

In art, Pablo Picasso and his friend Georges Braque tried to capture the Beautiful Era with their new idea – cubism. Art Nouveau was the most popularly recognized art movement to emerge from the Belle époque period.

La belle époque was also a period of peace and prosperity, and technological progress was the moving spirit. It was the era of the machine. The industrial output of France tripled during the period. The iron, chemical and electricity industries grew, providing raw output used by the 600 different car and aviation manufactories in France. The telegraph and telephone increased the communication across the nation and the railway network expanded hugely. The Eiffel Tower, built to serve as the grand entrance to the 1889 World's Fair became the very symbol of the spirit of industrialization that defined the age.

The French writer Charles Peguy defined the rapid progress of the period in 1913 by saying that "the world has changed more in the last 30 years than in all the time since Jesus Christ." The Belle époque came to an end with the outbreak of World War I when the technological progress of the era was applied to the construction of destructive weapons that took the lives of more than 10 million people and reshaped the map of Europe.

In light of the destruction that followed, the phrase belle époque reflects the post-war nostalgia for the peaceful, prosperous and innocent Beautiful Era that was laid to rest with the outbreak of the Great War.

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