办学单位： 班 学 级： 生：
外 国 语 学 院 08 级外贸英语（专升本）
年 11 月 4 日
指导教师： 提交日期： 2010
封面推荐用 230 克浅兰色皮纹纸
Business English Contracts Literary Style features and Translation Technique
By Li Dong Lei
Supervisor: Prof. Cai su lu
NOV 04, 2010
School of Foreign Languages, SCUT
Business English Contracts Literary Style features and Translation Technique
With the rapid development of international economy and trade，business English contracts have been widely used in international business activities. However, many business economic disputes are caused by the failure in translation of them, so how to translate the business English contract appears more and more significant now. Up to now, lots of translators have been dedicated to studying the translation skills of business English contract, but most of them only place emphasis on the literary level of the contract, but ignore its specialty that business English contract, as a legal document, has strict rules and conventional usages of its own, which is different from the average applied texts. So this paper, based on both the linguistic and legal characteristics of business English contract, analyzes its own language features and translation strategies. Firstly, the paper analyzes its style characteristics on words, sentence and text levels. Then, the paper summarizes the translation strategies of business English contract and gives advice on its translation methods. Through the above research, the paper hopes to improve translators’ capability of comprehension and translation of business English contract.
Key Words: business English contract; style feature; translation technique
随着中国对外经济贸易的飞速发展，商务英语合同在国际商务活动中使用得越来越广泛。其中不少 商务经济纠纷在很大程度上是由于合同翻译失误所引起的，因此，商务英语合同的翻译问题也显得越来 越重要。 到目前为止，已有许多翻译工作者致力于商务英语合同的翻译技巧研究。然而大部分的研究都强调 从文本的文学方面对商务英语合同的翻译进行研究，而忽略了商务英语合同本身作为一种法律文本，有 其严格的规则和惯例，有其独特的特点，因而不同于一般的应用文文体翻译。因此，本文从商务英语合 同的文体和法律特征两个方面来分析其自身的特点以及其翻译技巧。 本文首先从商务英语合同的词汇、句子和语篇三个方面分析其用语特征。在此基础之上，第三部分 总结归纳出合同翻译的策略，并提出商务英语合同的翻译建议。希望通过本文的分析能够提高翻译工作 者对商务英语合同的认知理解和翻译能力。
Abstract (English) Abstract (Chinese)
2 Literary Style features of Business English Contracts 2.1 Lexical Features 2.1.1 Formal Words 2.1.2 Terminologies 2.1.3 Archaic Words 2.1.4 Borrowed Words 2.2 Syntactic Features 2.2.1 Statement Sentence 2.2.2 Passive Voice and Active Voice Sentences 2.2.3 Long and Complex Sentence 2.3 Textual Features 2.3.1 Application of the Legal Format 2.3.2 Parallel Construction
3 Translation theory of business contract English 3.1 Translation principles 3.2 Requirements of translators
4 Translation Strategies of Business English Contracts 4.1 Word and its Translation 4.2 Sentence and its Translation. 4.3 Text and its Translation
With China’s entry into WTO and the further deepening and widening of its opening up to the outside world, business cooperation between China and other countries has become more frequently and more contracts are signed in business circles. Most of these contracts are written in English, which has been accepted as an international business language. All this means that the translation of business English contracts is now playing a more important role in the business community both in China and abroad. Business English contracts are legal documents which define the obligations and rights of both parties and bind on their economic activities. A good English business contract can improve the quality of business contacts and it is crucial to the success of international business activities. To produce effective business contracts, a deep understanding of the style features of English business contracts, such as the characteristics of English business wording, the phraseology of business contracts and the pragmatics and so on, is needed. The significance of the paper is to promoting the development of international business activity. There are a lot of researchers both at home and abroad study on this field. Business contracts on the foreign field: 《International Contracts》by Shippey. K; 《English for Contract and Company Law》by Chartrand and Marcella, etc. Among the domestic scholars, “the Lexical Features and Translation of Business English Contract” by Chen Jianping, it discusses and summarizes some basic principles and techniques of business contract English translation. Chen Xinsheng from the point of stylistic of the business contracts analyzes the stylistic features and its translation. Lan Tian’s《International Business Contracts Course》summarizes the techniques of , the writing of business contract, the technical terms of the business contract, the lexical features, the unique structure, and so on. This paper mainly talks about the literary style features of business English contract and its translation. The research method of this thesis has adopted mainly includes: concept analysis method, evidence analysis method, comparison analysis method, and so on.
Literary Style features of Business English Contracts
The style features of business English contracts on lexical, syntactic and textual regulation will be specified in this part. 2.1 Lexical Features Word is the basis of any kind of texts. Therefore, lexical features of business English contracts specialize in the usage of words. It is known to us that business contract is categorized as both legal documents and business writing and business English contracts share the diction with the language of law and business. Lexical features mainly encompass the following points: formal words, terminologies, archaic words, as well as borrowed words. 2.1.1 Formal Words Different trade parties are from different countries and regions; therefore, owing to the discrepancy of their languages and cultures, it is very easy to have misunderstanding between them. So, business English contract adopts a set of formal expressions to do its utmost to avoid misunderstanding. It can be clearly proved by comparing Column A with Column B in the following table. Part A grant levy tariff effect initiate inform acquaint purchase constitute terminate within the first ten days of June in lieu of Part B give charge tax make begin tell be familiar with buy include end in early June in place of
Obviously, the words listed in Column A which are often employed in business English contracts are more formal than those in Column B. Thus the usage of formal words further
enhances the rigorous of contracts and minimizes the possibility of misinterpretation. 2.1.2 Terminologies The vocabulary used in business English contracts consists of common words, semi-terminology, and terminology. The common words are used in a general way. The semi-terminologies derive from common words, and they have special meanings in the contracts, and they accounts for the most part in business English contracts. The range of terminology involved in the business English contracts mainly include: commerce, trade, finance, law, consignment, processing and assembling, joint venture, technology development, cooperation and transfer, construction, and so on. Take the legal terms for example. Terminology always consists of the unique legal terms to express the concept of common core in law, such as tort (侵权) and subrogation（代位权）. However, the main problem in translation of foreign trade contracts is caused by failure to indentify the semi-terminology. It may result in false or distorted translation. For example: We consider it difficult to file a claim against the manufacturers. 我们认为厂家提出索赔有些困难。 If a country is exporting more than it imports, it is receiving foreign currency and has a balance of trade surplus. 如果一个国家的出口大于进口，便是贸易顺差。 The contract is concluded in case of acceptance of the offer. 要约一旦承诺，合同即行成立。 In these sentences, claim, balance, acceptance, offer, as terms in business English, is used in its special not normal meaning. More examples are as follows: Words accept credit collection honor draft interest factor policy agreement promotion General meaning 接受 信誉 收集 荣誉 草稿 兴趣 因素 政策 同意 提升 Usage in Contract 承兑 贷款 托收 承兑 汇票 利息 代理人 保险单 协议 促销
offer average 2.1.3 Archaic Words
Archaic words refer to the words that are seldom used in modern times but are frequently used in ancient times and middle age. According to what English linguist Geoffrey Leech (2008) points out in Taxonomy of English Words, archaic English belongs to words with formal stylistic meaning, which completely meets the requirements of precision and concision of business English contracts. There are a lot of archaic words used in the business English contracts, which often appear in the form of compound adverbs, i.e., words formed by adverbs “ here, there, where” combining with some particles “after, at, by, from, in, of, to, under, upon, with, as, etc”, such as “ herein”, “hereof”, “ hereinafter”, “ herewith”, “thereafter”, “ therein”, “thereof”, “thereto”, “whereby”, “whereof”, “wherefore”. There are more examples as follows: Example 1: Matters not covered herein shall be settled in accordance with the provisions of the Letters exchanged on July 15th, 2003 as herein above referred to. Example 2: Whereas, this objective can be best achieved by the formation of a Joint Venture Company for the purpose of manufacturing, developing, selling, installing and maintaining elevators, escalators and parts and components thereof. Now therefore, in accordance with the principle of equality and mutual benefit, the three parties enter into the following Agreement。 Example 3: This contract is made and entered into Beijing on 8th December, 2005 by and between the Seller (hereinafter referred to as the “Party A”) and the Buyer (hereinafter referred to as the “Party B”). 2.1.4 Borrowed Words The usage of borrowed words, also called “loan words” or “foreign word”, is another distinctive feature in lexical level. As their name implies, they refer to the words borrowed or introduced from other languages. They mainly stem from Latin, Greek, and French. Borrowed word makes contracts seem more serious and formal, such as the following words from Latin “ as per”, “ re”, “ex”, “tale quale”；Words from French “force majeure”, “action”, “petty”, “remise”, “save”. Look at the following examples. Example 1: Should either of the parties to the contract be prevented from executing the contract by force majeure, such as earthquake, fire and war and other unforeseen events, the prevented shall notify the other party by cable without any delay.
由于地震、火灾、战争及其它不可预见的不可抗力,致使影响合同的履行时， 遇到不 可抗力的一方，应立即电报通知对方。 Example 2: The People’s Insurance Company of China undertakes to insure the under-mentioned goods in transportation subject to the conditions of this policy as per the clauses printed overleaf and other special clauses attached hereon. 中国人民保险公司按照本保险单承保险别和背面所载条款承保下述货物运输保险。 2.2 Syntactic Features Business English contracts are characterized by the use of statement sentences, passive and active sentences, long and complex sentences. 2.2.1 Statement Sentence According to the aim of using sentences, English sentences can be classified as statement, question, command and exclamation. The functions of them are different. Statement sentence is used in stating, explaining, stipulating, as well as judging. It can make sentence seem objective, equal to both parties and natural. For example: Example 1: The Buyer shall make a claim against the Seller (including replacement of the goods) by the further inspection certificate and all the expenses incurred therefore shall be borne by the Seller. 买方须凭复检证明书向卖方提出索赔，由此引起的全部费用应由卖方承担。 Example 2: The risk in respect of goods sold in transit passes to the buyer from the time of the conclusion of the contract. However, if the circumstances so indicate, the risk is assumed by the buyer from the time the goods were handed over to the carrier who issued the documents embodying the contract of carriage. 对于在运输途中销售的货物，从订立合同时起，风险就移转到买方承担。但是，如果 情况表明有此需要，从货物交付给签发载有运输合同单据的承运人时起，风险就由买方承 担。 2.2.2 Passive Voice and Active Voice Sentences The passive voice is widely employed in scientific and technical writing, newspaper writing, governmental or business writing. It is because passive voice can emphasize the action bearer, or have a better and more objective description about a relevant event or stipulation. In contract, the articles of packing, shipment, insurance, payment, and claim, etc. often use passive voice sentence. It can clearly express the rights and obligations of both parties, which can contribute to attain the goal of the contract. For example: Example 1:
Payment: To be settled by irrevocable and documentary L/C. 支付：以不可撤销跟单信用证付款 Example 2: If the payment is to be made against the handing over of the goods or of documents, the place of fulfilling the contract is the place where the handing over takes place. 如凭移交货物或单据支付价款，则移交货物或单据的地点为合同履行的地点。 Sometimes, it is inconvenient to mention the subjects of the sentences. For example: Any dispute arising from or in connection with this Contract shall be submitted to China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission for arbitration which shall be conducted in accordance with the Commission’s arbitration rules in effect at the time of applying for arbitration, the applicable law should be the laws of P.R.C. 凡因本合同引起的或与本合同有关的任何争议，均应提交中国国际经济贸易仲裁委员 会，按照申请仲裁时该会现行有效的仲裁规则依据中华人民共和国法律进行仲裁。 Generally, the dispute happens between the two parties of the contracts, but in view of politeness, and establishing good relationship, it is advisable to deal with dispute as a subject rather than parties. Look at the following example. Upon termination or dissolution of the Partnership，the partnership will be promptly liquidated, with all debts being paid first, prior to any distribution of the remaining funds. 合伙企业一经终止或解散，合伙企业立即清算，在分割剩余财产前，首先偿还所有债务。 2.2.3 Long and Complex Sentence The chief characteristic of sentence structure in contract documents is their lengthiness and complicatedness. It is because long sentence can precisely stipulate both parties’ rights and obligations, and reduce ambiguous expressions. These long sentences include many sub-clauses, attributes, adverbial adjuncts and so on. For example: Example 1: The contract will be awarded to the lowest responsive bidder complying with the conditions and specifications of the invitation for bids provided his bid is reasonable and it is to the interest of the UNFPA to accept it. 采购合同将被授予按照本投标邀请函的条件和规定做出响应且标价最低的投标人。但 是规定,该投标人的标价是合理的,且符合联合国人口基金会的利益。 Example 2: Should one of the parties to the contract be prevented from executing contract by force majeure, such as earthquake, typhoon, flood, fire, and war and other unforeseen events, and their happening and consequences are unpreventable and unavoidable, the prevented party shall notify the other party by cable or fax without any delay, and within fifteen days thereafter provide the
detailed information of the events and a valid document for evidence issued by the relevant public notary organization for explaining the reason of its inability to execute or delay the execution of all or part of the contract . 由于地震、台风、水灾、火灾、战争以及其他不能预见并且对其发生和后果不能防止 或避免的不可抗力事件，影响任何一方履行合同时，遇有不可抗力的一方，应立即用电报、 传真通知对方，并应在 15 天内提供不可抗力详情及合同不能履行或者部分不能履行，或者 需要延期履行的理由的有效证明文件，此项证明文件应由不可抗力发生地区的公证机构做 出。 Such long sentences are to be seen easily in contracts, and although long sentences make it difficult to understand and translate, they clearly convey both parties’ rights and obligations. In that way, contract appears more precise, accurate and logical. 2.3 Textual Features As we know, business English contract is defined as one of the legal documents. It has the formative structure, and as it has been introduced in the Part One, it consists of 3 parts, namely, the head, the body, and the tail. There are two formative structure features of the text. The first one is the application of the legal format. And the second one is the parallel construction. 2.3.1 Application of the Legal Format The business contract is a legal document that ensures the rights and obligations of both parties, so it complies with the legal logic, which is “assumption-handle-sanction”. The legal language requires completeness and standard, therefore, it often includes the three logical parts into one sentence. Correspondingly, the complex sentences which contain the conditional sentences often appear in the text. Thus “if X, then Y shall do Z” is the format of the legal English. For example, Example 1: If Buyer fails to comply with the conditions of this article, Seller may, in addition to any other remedies, suspend all performance until Buyer has so complied. 若买方未能遵循该条款，卖方除采取其他补救措施以外，可中止履行该合同直至买方 继续履行该条款。 Example 2: If the test can not be completed successfully under the Article 9.4, Buyer has right to rescind the contract and lodge a claim. 如在 9.4 约定的情况下仍未试车成功时，买方有权解除合同并要求赔偿损失。 2.3.2 Parallel Construction Parallel construction can make the text smooth and rhythmic. The use of parallel
construction in words can be proved from the synonyms mentioned above. From the grammatical level, it can be found in the same construction of the sentences, such as the following examples extracted from the business English contract. Should the Seller fail to deliver the contracted goods or effect the shipment in time by reason of war, flood, fire, storm, heavy snow or any other causes beyond their control, the time of shipment might be duly extended , or alternatively a part or whole of the contract might be cancelled without any liability attached to the Seller but the seller have to furnish the buyers with a certificate attesting such event or events. 如因战争、水灾、火灾、暴风雪、大雪或其他任何卖方不能控制之原因，卖方不能交 货或不能按期装运， 则可适当延迟装运期或撤销合同之全部或部分订货， 而卖方不负责任; 但卖方需向卖方提供正式发生这类事故的证件。 In this example, “and”, “or”, commas and semicolons are the tools frequently used in English foreign trade contracts to form a parallel structure. Here faithfulness occupies the predominance for translation. Commas and semicolons keep intact; “or” is translated as “或”, “或 者” or “又或”; “and” as “和”, “并”, “及”，“以及” or “并且”. The English contract drafter is apt to employ the parallel structures to list the documents or certificates to be issued or certified, especially in the payment and shipment clauses. For example, Document to be submitted by the Sellers to the Bank for negotiation: (a) Full set clean-on-board shipped Bill of Lading (b) Invoice (c) Inspection Certificate on Quality and Inspection Certificate on Weight issued by the China Commodity Inspection Bureau at the port of shipment (d) Insurance Policy 向银行议付时，卖方应提交下列单据： (a) 全套清洁已装船提单； (b) 发票； (c) 装运口岸中国商品检验局出具之品质检验书与重量检验书； (d) 保险单 Parallel structure is easy to be found in the business English contract, and with the help of the punctuations, words, phrases and sentences are arranged orderly with smooth rhythm, which contributes to clarify the rights and obligations of contracting parties, and avoid misunderstanding and misinterpretation. Parallel contracture properly meets the requirement of the business English contract.
Translation theory of business English contract
Business contracts are legal documents, have its unique characteristics. Therefore, understand the theory of contracts’ translation is the basic requirement of translating business contracts. This part is introduces the translation principles of business English contracts. Then, it analyzes the requirements of translators. 3.1 Translation principles For many years, the three characters guide: faithfulness, expressiveness and elegance has been regarded as the soul of translation theory. Although a little change is made to it, it still applies to a wide range of translation. According to the three characters guide, business English contract translation has new principles and requirements. It is known that translators of business contracts should find suitable style to convey both accurate information and preciseness style. Here four principles for translation of business contracts are put toward, i.e., accuracy, compactness, standardization and smoothness. Accuracy, the soul and the most important principle of translation of business English contract, means that translations should express the original meaning faithfully, exactly and comprehensively without any distortion to the original idea. Translation of business English contracts would use every possible ways to ensure its precision. Usually elegance gives way to accuracy. For example, many adverbials or nominal structures are used in an unusual order. Compactness implies that the translated version must be clearly expressed and well-organized without signs of mechanical word for word translation or grammatical mistakes. If so, this would cause evasion of obligations or stretch of rights if someone maliciously takes advantage of it. Standardization demands strict attention not only to using effectively conventional expressions of target language but also to finding equivalent formula for source text. Accordingly, translators must always adopt established wording and phrasing devices to make them easier to be understood and also more suitable for contract style. fluency is by no means limited to be understood easily. In translating business contracts, we should carefully analyze sentence structures of the original so as not to be confined to their surface meaning .
3.2 Requirements of translators Translation of business English contracts is quite different from that of literary works or other varieties. As for literary works, translators have to deal with the problem of how to render the original text vividly and elegantly. Whereas business contracts are legal documents, elegance and vividness should be avoided for the purpose of precision and exactness. Such a feature is of great help to translators of business English contracts. I’d like to point out four basic requirements for a competent translator of business contracts: (1) The translator must have a strong sense of responsibility. Responsibility is the basic requirements to people, also is an important behavior rules. People threw themselves into various social activities not only fulfils their own demand, but also performs various obligations and responsibilities. Business English contracts have legal effectiveness, so the translators who have a strong sense of responsibility can earnestly finish the job. (2) The translator must be proficient in bilingual. Obviously, translating the business contracts refers to two languages, so if the translators are familiar with two languages, they can do the translation with high-quality and high efficient. (3) The translator must have a good knowledge of the subject concerned. When translating a paragraph, in addition to mastery of two languages concerned, the translator must know the subject of the paragraph concerned and the feature of this subject’s language. It can reduce mistakes and ensure the accuracy and professional of translation. (4) The translator must have a balanced combination of theory and practice on translation. Practice is the most important step to improve translation level. Most of translation are based on theory firstly, and then improve them continuously in practice, so was done repeatedly, the perfect translation will be provided. So have balanced combination of theory and practice on translation is very important to a qualified translator.
Translation Strategies of Business English Contracts
According to the general theory of translation, the translation strategy is determined by the purpose and the function of the translation text. The purpose and function of contract document decide that the translation of contract document is different from that of other types of writing. In this chapter, the main translation strategies of business English contract will be illustrated from the following three aspects: word and its translation, sentence and its translation, text and its translation. 4.1 Word and its Translation In terms of lexical translation, it should be very careful about the concision and smoothness of the Chinese version. Firstly, specialized terms are often employed instead of common words in business English contract inclusive of those jargons and phrases that are no longer used in other varieties of English; therefore, we should make it clear that the difference between the specialized meaning and the common meaning of the words in the contract documents. Besides, the polysemy is easy to be found. Take the word “cover” for example, there are three meanings in the following phrases: “cover the loss”（弥补损失）, “cover all principle risks” (包括所有基本险别), “cover the amount of our claim.” (支付我方索赔数额). Secondly, we should take it into consideration that the formal style of the wording in business English contract. As it has been mentioned, archaic words are often to be used in the contract documents, we should be prevented from using colloquial words in preference to formal words as possible as we can, in order to achieve the solemnity in wording; we can choose, when necessary, traditional Chinese expressions in translation. For example, Example 1: The undersigned hereby certifies that the goods to be supplied are produced in Japan. 下述签署人兹保证, 所供货物由日本制造。 Example 2: Your prompt reply would be greatly appreciated. 即复为感。
Last but not least, we should pay attention to the flexible usage of the conversion in Chinese-English Translation. For example:
The formation of this contract, its validity, interpretation, execution and settlement of the disputes shall be governed by the related laws of the People’s Republic of China. 本合同的订立、效力、解释、履行和争议的解决均受中华人民共和国法律的管辖。 In this sentence, we translate “validity, interpretation, execution and settlement” from noun to verb in Chinese. Here is another example: In consideration of you making a loan available to the Borrower: _______, we hereby issue this Guarantee for the account of the Borrower and agree as follows: 鉴于你方向借款人：____提供了一笔贷款，我行特此为借款人出具保函并保证如下： In translation of the above fragment of a contract document, the translator is very careful in his choice of words for the Chinese version, especially with regard to the rendering of the bold parts of the original: instead of using “考虑到” to render “in consideration of”, the translator chooses “鉴于” which is more formal and more commonly used in similar official contract documents in Chinese; the translator chooses “你方” which is a term in preference to “你们” which is more informal. The same is also true of “借款人” instead of “借钱人”，“保函” instead of “保证人”. According to the analysis of the examples above, the Chinese version is supposed to faithful to the original not only in meaning but also in style. And it should be flexible when we translate English into Chinese. 4.2 Sentence and its Translation. The translation of business English contact on syntactic level is more than words, but the words performing functions grammatically in the sentences as well as the clauses. Therefore, the words will not be translated as what is done in the last session but as the grammatical units. One of the problems in translating contract documents is the handling of complicated and long syntactical structures. To translate such a long sentence in contract documents, the translator should make a thorough analysis of the internal structure and logical relations within the sentence, identifying the progression of ideas from beginning to end. According to Liu Miqing, six techniques are adopted: embedding (包孕), cutting (切断/分切), reversing (倒置), splitting (拆 离), inserting (插入) and recasting (重组). (刘宓庆, 1985: 160). The paper will discuss the translation techniques of embedding and cutting in details which are more frequently adopted. According to Liu Miqing, what embedding means is that to match the feature of Chinese, the post-modifiers in English, including particles, infinitives and attributive clauses are often put before the head. For example, “the quality certificate issued by Party A” is translated as “甲方出 具的品质检验证书”, “the measures to be taken ” as “采取的措施”, “the technical information it
provides ” as “乙方提供的技术”. As its name implies, cutting refers to divide whole sentence into smaller and independent sentences according to the sense group. Translator should divide this long sentence into a number of small units according to Chinese syntactical characteristic, each of which is then translated into a Chinese short sentence. Finally, these short sentences should be re-arranged in a proper order. For example: If the bill of lading contains particulars concerning the general nature, leading marks, number of packages or pieces, weight or quantity of the goods which the carrier or other person issuing the bill of lading on his behalf knows or has reasonable grounds to suspect do not accurately represent the goods actually taken over or, where a shipped bill of lading issues, loaded, or if he has no reasonable means of checking such particulars, the carrier or such other person must insert in the bill of lading a reservation specifying these inaccuracies, grounds of suspicion of the absence of the reasonable means of checking. 如果承运人或代其签发提单的其他人确知或有合理的根据怀疑提单所载有关货物的品 类、主要标志、包数或件数，重量或数量等项目没有明确的表示实际接管的货物，或在签 发“已装船”提单情况下，没有准确地表示实际装船的货物，或者他无适当的方法来核对这 些项目，则承运人或代其签发提单的其他人必须在提单上做出保留，说明不符之处，怀疑 根据或无适当的核对方法。 Embedding and cutting are the two basic techniques for translating the long sentences, actually the former one being pre-position (前置法) and the latter one being translation in order (顺译法). 刘宓庆， （ 1985： 167） Other methods mentioned above like recasting or reconstructing are based on the full and correct understanding of the original long sentence. It requires the translator to break away from the fetter of the original sentence and to rearrange the sentence level, order and structure so as to make the target sentence natural and fluent. 4.3 Text and its Translation It is obvious that translation of the whole text is definitely not as simple as word-for-word translation. What a translator should do is to convey the meaning as a whole. When we translate the business English contracts, there are many set sentence patterns. And we should try to follow these patterns. Here are some set sentence patterns regarding the elementary articles of a contract: Example 1: Article of Claim: Within 90 days after the commodity reaching the destination port, should the commodity be
found not in conformity with the stipulations of the contract, except those claims for which the insurance company or the owners of the vessel are liable, the Buyers shall, on the strength of the Inspection Certificate issued by China Import &Export Commodity Inspection Bureau, have the right to claim for replacement with new goods or for compensation, and all the expenses (such as inspection charges, freight for returning the goods and for sending the replacement, insurance premium, storage and loading and unloading charges, etc) shall be borne by the Sellers. 如果发现品质、规格、数量与合同不符，除应由保险公司或船运公司负责外，买方在 货到目的港后 90 天内， 有权凭中国进出口商品检验局出具的检验证明书要求调换新货或照 价赔偿；而且一切费用（如检验费、换货的往返运费、保险费、仓储费、装卸费等）均应 由卖方承担。 Example 2: Article of Force Majeure: Should one of the parties to the contract be prevented from executing contract by force majeure, such as earthquake, typhoon, flood, fire, and war and other unforeseen events, and their happening and consequences are unpreventable and unavoidable, the prevented party shall notify the other party by cable or fax without any delay, and within fifteen days thereafter provide the detailed information of the events and a valid document for evidence issued by the relevant public notary organization for explaining the reason of its inability to execute or delay the execution of all or part of the contract . 由于地震、台风、水灾、火灾、战争以及其他不能预见并且对其发生和后果不能防止 或避免的不可抗力事件，影响任何一方履行合同时，遇有不可抗力的一方，应立即用电报、 传真通知对方，并应在 15 天内提供不可抗力详情及合同不能履行或者部分不能履行，或者 需要延期履行的理由的有效证明文件，此项证明文件应由不可抗力发生地区的公证机构做 出。 In fact, there exist so many set sentence patterns in the contract documents. What translator should do is to follow those patterns and try the best to convey the complete and accurate meaning from the source text to target text. Translator does not have to take trouble to translate the clauses and articles in a different way. He can just follow the set patterns to save time.
With the economic globalization and China’s entry into the WTO, business English contract as a legal document is playing an increasingly important role. This paper firstly makes a comparatively comprehensive analysis of the style features of business English contract. In terms of the style features, it involves three levels, that is, the lexical level, sentence level, as well as the text level. In order to preserve the seriousness of legal documents, faithfulness is sufficient for the translation of the archaic words between English and Chinese and so do the formal words and terminologies. As a result of linguistic history, English, formal writing in particular, is filled with borrowed words, and the same is true in business English contract. Long sentence is typical feature of English formal writing. Functions and text type are closely related. Business English contracts, function of which is to inform the business content and regulate the behaviors of both parties, belong to informative and vocative text. It requires the translation of business English contracts as “faithfulness”, “accuracy”, “and conciseness” and “conventionalization”. According to the study of the style features of business English contracts, the paper summarizes some basic strategies of its translation. And it is also from three levels to analyze, namely, word, sentence, and text. Good translation of contract documents should have the same function of the original and maintain linguistic features at the same time. In a word, the way of translating rests with the purpose of translating.
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