How to translate names - Christ to Christus?
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The King James Bible uses the English versions of names, of course. While the German Bible translations tend to use Latin names or sometimes the more modern spelling of Latin names. But what names would be appropriate to use for a German translation of the King James Bible?
At first I used the Names as found in Schlachter 2000 or in the Martin Luther translation of 1545.
But the reading of the German style names often doesn’t seem to fit the sound of the King James Bible. As if eben the English spelling of the names had been chosen by the KJV translators for a reason. In the German Bibles the most prominent problem is the name of Jesus Christ. The German translations spell it Jesus Christus, which is the Latin way to spell it. They even transform it along the Latin Grammer: Das Leiden Jesu Christi. But you don’t do that with a name, because it is not just a noun.
You don’t see two “Marki” or worse “Markusse”, you see two people named “Markus”. You write about the suffering “des Markus” nicht “des Marki”. But when it comes to Jesus Christ, the German translators seem to follow a tradition, that is funny, in the best case.
But there are some points against using the Latin and sometimes even the greek spelling for some names.
Paul - Paulus?
The Bible calls the Apostle Paul as “Saul” (Σαούλ), a Hebrew name. Only after Acts 13:9, which mentions that Saul was also called Paul, the Bible refers to Paul as the name of the Apostle. But neither was this name given to him as a Roman name, nor did Jesus or anybody change his name after his turn to be a Christian. Just the Greek and Latin versions of his name were “Paulos” and “Paulus”. Even in the Hebrew New Testament we read the name “פּוֹלוֹס” (with the addition “גַם”, which translates to “also”; making sense, because Paul was “also” his name, besides “Saul”) which translates to the German “Paul”.
And by the way: Jesus didn’t give him the name “Paul”, it already was one of his names (see Acts 13:9). He just changed to use his Roman name, when addressing the Gentiles, instead of his Jewish name Saul. Nobody told him to do so, not even Jesus. This might be mixed up often, because Jesus commanded Simon to be called Peter (Mark 3:16; not changing his name, since he was still Simon, but requesting to call him Peter).
[to be continued]