©inTRAlinea & María Sánchez, María Porciel & Iris Serrat (2014).
"Exploring Current Research in Translation and Lexicography", inTRAlinea Special Issue: Translation & Lexicography.
Stable URL: https://www.intralinea.org/index.php/specials/article/2036

inTRAlinea [ISSN 1827-000X] is the online translation journal of the Department of Interpreting and Translation (DIT) of the University of Bologna, Italy. This printout was generated directly from the online version of this article and can be freely distributed under Creative Commons License CC BY-NC-ND 4.0.

Exploring Current Research in Translation and Lexicography

By María Sánchez, María Porciel & Iris Serrat (Universities of Alcalá, Jaume I, & Valencia, Spain)

Abstract & Keywords


Translation and Bilingual Dictionaries, edited by Sin-wai (2004), was an urgent answer to those voices claiming that there was a scarcity of research on translation and lexicography. This book brought together academics whose work focused on translation and bilingual dictionaries, lexicography and cross-cultural translation, as well as research on electronic lexicography. Ten years later, it is our aim to contribute to this effort and present current research carried out by academics in the field of translation and lexicography by illustrating the close relationship between these two disciplines.

It seems self-evident that dictionary consultation constitutes an important stage in the process of translation. According to Roberts (1992), language users need to know how to use dictionaries effectively in order to successfully complete the translation process. Moreover, the dictionary is often the first source of information that professional and trainee translators will consult. Taking into account the enormous value and benefits that appropriate dictionary use can provide to trainee translators, it seems quite obvious that we need more information about the relationship between translation and lexicography. Interrelated disciplines such as terminology and corpus-based translation studies occupy a prominent place in this relationship. Using corpora and managing appropriate terminology and other documentary resources can increase subject knowledge and aid analysis of text type conventions, which also develops language competence. In general terms, the contributions in this issue can be divided into research on terminology and corpus-based translation studies on the one hand and lexicography, with a special focus on bilingual lexicography, on the other.

This special volume of InTRAlinea starts with an article written by Daniel Gallego Hernández (University of Alicante, Spain) and entitled “Elaboración de glosarios económicos con fines docentes: aproximación metodológica basada en corpus y explotación terminológica en el aula de traducción”. The author approaches the challenging task of helping translation students become familiar with the terminology used in specialized business and economic texts. Gallego Hernández proposes that terms should be taken not only from specialized dictionaries, but also from real-world sources, in this case the Spanish press. With this aim in mind, he starts by exploring the technical aspects of terminology extraction and terminology detection methods in order to compile a business corpus, concluding that both have advantages and disadvantages and that a combination of these methods could be beneficial. Moreover, he stresses the great role played by intuition when teachers face the task of identifying those terms which students might find difficult to understand. Last, but not least, the author presents a collection of possible approaches to teaching the terminology in his business corpus, including a wide variety of exercises.

Also focused on terminology, the paper by Isabel Durán Muñoz (University of Málaga, Spain) revolves around one of the difficulties faced by translation students and inexperienced translators when trying to resolve terminological doubts, namely, how to identify the correct choice among the wide range of online resources available nowadays. The author claims that a so-called “documentary competence” is an essential skill for making such a choice and provides a fully-developed template for its assessment. The template should be helpful for “searching, selecting and assessing the most adequate information resources so as to achieve the best results”, and the author explains it in detail, providing examples of “good” and “bad” resources.

The next article, by Adonay C. Dos Santos Moreira (Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, Portugal), emphasizes the relationship between lexicography and corpus-based translation studies (CTS). The author provides an useful overview of research on terminology and develops a parallel corpus-based approach to the creation of a translation-oriented term bank that can be used to find linguistic, conceptual and pragmatic information. After first providing the theoretical framework for her research, which is firmly grounded on Teresa Cabré’s Communicative Theory of Terminology (1999), the author discusses CTS in detail and describes the different steps involved in the creation of the corpus, called Turigal, and her methodological approach tothe compilation of the bilingual terminology.

Turning to bilingual lexicography research, María Teresa Ortego and Purificación Fernández Nistal (University of Valladolid, Spain) provide an overview of the treatment of specialized compound terms in two prestigious bilingual English and Spanish dictionaries: Gran Diccionario Oxford: Español–Inglés, Inglés–Español(2008) and Collins Universal Español–Inglés, English–Spanish (2009). Focusing on the field of computing, the research work reveals the reasons for the inclusion of specialized terms in general bilingual dictionaries and how expert knowledge enlarges general vocabulary with new concepts and terms. The way information gathered in the aforementioned reference works impacts upon translators’ work and general users’ understanding of new concepts. The authors’ research reveals, as well, several ways in which compound units are treated in each language and dictionary, showing not only statistics but also a thorough analysis of entries and the different strategies used to register compound terms with two or more words. 

Building on the idea that the compilation of dictionary entries can be systematized by structuring corpus-derived lexical information in a pre-lexicographic database (Atkins & Rundell 2008: 100101), Thomai Dalpanagioti (Centre for the Greek Language, Greece) outlines the design framework of a Greek–English e-dictionary for encoding tasks by learners of English as a foreign language. The paper details a set of features and functions contained in the e-dictionary that enable users to express themselves in English and to suggest a translation solution when there is no established terminology in Modern Greek. The work describes the user interface with a graphical depiction of the main screen layout and an explanation of the electronic functions contained in the dictionary, as well as the entry structure and its components, information which should prove enormously valuable for researchers and users alike. Finally, an example illustrating the bilingual entry design is presented.

To conclude this special volume, Marta Torres Martínez (University of Jaén, Spain) deals with a particular aspect of translation and lexicography in her review of Antonio de Capmany’s French–Spanish dictionary (1805), considered a valuable bilingual lexicographical tool in the early 19th century. The paper focuses on how this Catalan lexicographer infused the dictionary with his own ideology and offers reflections on lexicology, lexicography and translation. 


Atkins, B. T. S. & Rundell,  M. 2008. The Oxford Guide to Practical Lexicography, Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Cabré Castellví, M. T. 1999. La Terminología: Representación y Comunicación. Elementos para una teoría de base comunicativa y otros artículos. Barcelona: Institut Universitari de Lingüística Aplicada.

Capmany A. 1805. Nuevo diccionariofrancés-español. Madrid: Antonio Sancha.

Gallimberti, B. & Russell, R. (eds). 2008.Gran Diccionario Oxford: Español- Inglés, Inglés-Español. 4th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Roberts, R. P. 1992. "Translation pedagogy: strategies for improving dictionary use". TTR, 5, 1: 49-76

Scriben, R. et al. (eds). 2009. Collins Universal Español-Inglés, English-Spanish. 9th ed. Barcelona: Random House Mondadori/Glasgow, Harper Collins Publishers.

Sin-wai, Ch. (ed). 2004. Translation and Bilingual Dictionaries. Tübingen: Max Niemeyer Verlag.

©inTRAlinea & María Sánchez, María Porciel & Iris Serrat (2014).
"Exploring Current Research in Translation and Lexicography", inTRAlinea Special Issue: Translation & Lexicography.
Stable URL: https://www.intralinea.org/index.php/specials/article/2036