Alexander Hartmann has now given a reference to the list of translations suggested by the Auswärtiges Amt on the Triacom site. They are in Per Döhler’s archive there. For a long time that was the only place they could be found on the web, although when I came to mention them in the first entry, I couldn’t find them in the archive, but that was obviously my mistake.
bq. allemal nützlich für international tätige Juristen und alle diejenigen, die gerne mal über den Tellerrand der nationalen Rechtsordnung hinausblicken
(certainly useful for lawyers with an international practice and everyone who enjoys looking at the world outside the confines of the German legal system)
Since the translations were created in Germany, this statement is a little mysterious.
Hartmann was quoted by Walter Simon, who writes a German legal weblog with summaries in English. We had quite a discussion in the comments boxes (in German), once I had made the effort to register (I have one effective and one ineffective sign-in name with antville – it drives me mad registering there, but I suppose this deters comment spammers).
It’s striking that Walter Simon found the names unfamiliar. One wonders what the Auswärtiges Amt is doing. The list dates from 1974 and it isn’t that well known. I got a copy when I was sworn as a translator.
I don’t regard myself as obliged to use those names when I translate for the courts. I have rarely been asked to translate for them, and nearly all my sworn translations, being into English, go outside Germany, to places where the names are even less well known. I wouldn’t go as far as a French colleague of mine, who says as soon as she hears that a translation into French has been prescribed by a German authority, she knows not to use it. But it is absolutely vital for the original German name of the court to be there at least once (provided the court name is of any significance to the final reader – it isn’t always).
At all events, we don’t have anything like the Netherlands Nederlandse Rechtsbegrippen Vertaald, a book containing a few hundred Netherlands legal terms and their prescribed translations into French, English and German, that comes out every few years in an expanded edition. The 1998 second edition is described as follows in the Asser Newsletter No. 1:
bq. Nederlandse Rechtsbegrippen Vertaald : Frans-Engels-Duits
Second, revised edition
Eds.: K. Boele-Woelki en F.J.A. van der Velden
Revision: J.H.M. van Erp, C.B.P. Mahé and G.J.W. Steenhoff
When translating Dutch legal texts one is regularly confronted with specific Dutch legal terms for which there is no equivalent in the target language. `Nederlandse Rechtsbegrippen Vertaald’ provides translations for such legal terms. Apart from being an indispensable tool for translators, the aim of this book is to harmonize foreign words and expressions for typical Dutch legal terms, making this a unique publication. A second, revised edition has now appeared.
(Appearing under the auspices of the Netherlands Comparative Law Association, Utrecht. Published by the T.M.C. Asser Instituut, ISBN 90-6704-104-1, paperback, 80 pp., price Dfls. 35).