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Translation of "The Emperor's Military"

Michealin

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I'm working on a constructed alien language that uses modified Japanese grammar. That said, I know online translators can't be trusted, but the one I use the most gives the translations below various uses of "Japanese" as an adjective (marked with a + if "verified").

(person) = Nihonjin+
(language) = Nihongo+
(Empire) = Nihon (no) teikoku

Is "Nihon (no) teikoku" an accurate translation for "Japanese Empire"? If not, what is?

Along the same lines, is "Kōtei no gun(ji)" for "The Emperor's Military"? If not, what is?
 

joadbres

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Is "Nihon (no) teikoku" an accurate translation for "Japanese Empire"? If not, what is?

Along the same lines, is "Kōtei no gun(ji)" for "The Emperor's Military"? If not, what is?
It depends on what, specifically, you are trying to translate. If, for the first of these, you are referring specifically to the Japanese Empire that existed in Japan up until the end of World War II, then the translation you were given is not correct. That specific entity was called Dai Nippon Teikoku (or Dai Nihon Teikoku).

However, if you are wanting a term which refers to a generic Japanese empire, such as a hypothetical future one, then what you were given could be acceptable.

You can't expect an online translation tool to read your mind and give you exactly what you intend. Such tools are useful, but also require some skill on the part of the user.

Edited.
 
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Michealin

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Thanks .I was looking for the more specific example because the language is spoken by an empire. Is "Kōtei no gun(ji)" general, like "Nihon (no) teikoku"—then?
 

joadbres

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Is "Kōtei no gun(ji)" general, like "Nihon (no) teikoku"—then?
Yes. Up until the end of World War II, there was, for example, an "Imperial Japanese Army", but, at least as far as I know, no entity whose name would directly translate to "The Emperor's Military."

In Japanese, the "Imperial Japanese Army" was called Dai-Nippon Teikoku Rikugun.

(In my previous response, I should have put a dash between Dai and Nippon. It is better that way.)
 

Michealin

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Okay. Just to be thorough, what's the translation for Imperial Japanese Armed Forces/Military?
 

Majestic

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The same as what's above. If you want to express the same thing in a way that doesn't specifically recall the Imperial Japanese Army of the 2nd World War and earlier, you would have to come up with a fictitious name that conveys both army and empire, but distinguishes itself from the historical IJA, which is difficult to do.

However, since you would be dreaming up a fictitious name, there are no particular rules about what you can call it. You can call it インペリアル アーミー (Imperial Army) if you like. Or 帝の軍隊 (Army of the Emperor/Mikado). But it is hard to convey both "Imperial + Army" without coming close to the actual Imperial Army.
 

joadbres

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It is still not clear to me if you are wanting to use terms that are consistent with those in use during the era leading up to WWII, or if you are considering use of other terminology, such as from a future or alternate timeline history.

In the WWII era, as far as I know, there was no official blanket term that used a word meaning 'military' or 'armed forces'. The only official terms referred to either the army or the navy separately.

There were many shorthand terms in use, though, some of which may serve your purpose. These include Teikoku-Rikukaigun (imperial army and navy) and Kougun (皇軍), which could be translated as Emperor's Military, but was a term used only unofficially.
 

Michealin

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Basically, I came here, even though the languages are fictional, because Japanese grammar is the closest real life grammar to theirs and you're the best source I know of for Japanese translations.
 

joadbres

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Basically, I came here, even though the languages are fictional, because Japanese grammar is the closest real life grammar to theirs and you're the best source I know of for Japanese translations.
Because the Japanese language is so heavily reliant on kanji, or more specifically borrowed Chinese meaning-carrying morphemes, it seems a little strange to me to develop a conlang based on Japanese using only romanized translations of Japanese, which lose some of that connection to the meaning-based components. If that is your approach, though, the translations given by your favorite translator, including the ones you listed in your post #15293, are probably just as good as any, I would say. Such translations seem to me, at a minimum, to properly follow the basic rules of Japanese grammar. Those, or any of the others I suggested over the last few threads, are fine.
 

Michealin

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Okay. Originally, it was meant to have strict OSV syntax (seen below with both particles for understanding). Thus, my earlier statement about its use of "modified Japanese grammar," as either the instrument or direct object would be unmarked. Would such still allow for subject omission? If I end up basing the languages more heavily on Japanese, they'd still need to sound strange to a native speaker of Japanese.

刀で 敵を 斬る。 (I slay my foe with a katana; conventional)

敵を 刀で 斬る。 (I slay my foe with a katana; OSV and, likely, ungrammatical)
 

Majestic

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Both of those are grammatically correct, and perfectly fine and understandable. In the second one, there may be a focus on the item used to do the slaying (as if to imply there was a choice of items with which to do the slaying), but it depends on the context.

If I go back to your very first post:

1. Nihon no teikoku = the generally accepted form is Dai-Nippon Teikoku, without the "no". The "no" is implied in the accepted form. If you go out of the way to insert "no" back into the accepted idiom, it creates an expectation that you are trying to say something distinct from the accepted form.

I struggle to find an illustrative analogy. I suppose it is something like the difference between "schoolhouse" and "house of school". Essentially, they are the same thing, but the former has an accepted meaning and usage, while the latter looks, sounds, and feels funny, even though it is primarily the same words.

2. Kōtei no gun is an accurate translation of "Emperor's military".
 
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Toritoribe

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Okay. Originally, it was meant to have strict OSV syntax (seen below with both particles for understanding). Thus, my earlier statement about its use of "modified Japanese grammar," as either the instrument or direct object would be unmarked. Would such still allow for subject omission? If I end up basing the languages more heavily on Japanese, they'd still need to sound strange to a native speaker of Japanese.

刀で 敵を 斬る。 (I slay my foe with a katana; conventional)

敵を 刀で 斬る。 (I slay my foe with a katana; OSV and, likely, ungrammatical)
As already wrote, both are grammatical, common and natural. The key is the particles, not the omission of the subject or the word order, therefore, even 敵を斬る。刀で。 or 刀で斬る。敵を。 are acceptable as an inversion.

As for "Nihon Teikoku" vs. "Nihon no teikoku", the former is the name of an/the Japanese empire, whereas the latter is used to refer to one of the several historical empires in Japan, one of the regional empires in Japan or an empire outside Japan, which is/was ruled by Japan. 神聖ローマ帝国はヨーロッパの帝国だ "The Holy Roman Empire was an Europian empire" or 第三帝国はドイツの帝国だ "The Third Reich was a German empire" makes sense? As you can see in the examples above, there is no の in the name of empires. The Roman Empire is ローマ帝国. On the other hand, ローマの帝国 is for an empire founded/ruled by the Roman people, for instance the Byzantine Empire.
 

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