Engrish

Japanglish

Singlish

Hinglish

These are word I hear a lot from language majors who find interesting differences between the English spoken in Japan, Singapore, India (and more…)

And then there is “Engrish”. This is a funny (most of the time) site with a collection of unusual signs, t-shirts, menus, etc. in “English” and mostly found in Asian countries. But the signs have mistakes in spelling, grammar or usage which make them funny to people who get the joke.

The goal here is not to make fun of people who have difficulty distinguishing between “L” and “R” sounds. (Just as I hope you don’t make fun of my inability to distinguish between はし(橋)and はし(箸) or あめ(雨) and あめ(飴) without context.) The goal is to remind you to proofread and be careful about “direct translation” (直訳) and relying solely on your dictionary.

A few examples:

The word “kleptomaniac” means someone who has a compulsion to steal things (s/he is “addicted” to stealing). I’m not sure why someone translated 渡り蟹 that way, but it’s pretty funny. (And expensive!) BTW, I think 渡り蟹 are “softshell crab” in English, but I’m not an expert on seafood.

The word “peculiar” means “strange”. It does not make me want to buy the coffee. Perhaps they wanted to say “extra special” or “extraordinary” or “unique”?

 

Frightening.

Please check the difference between a “fire extinguisher”(消化器)a “hand grenade” (手榴弾)

A lesson in proofreading. Fiend = a demon or evil being.

Another lesson in proofreading. Washes off with SOUP?

 

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