Thursday, September 18, 2008


Engrish is the term that describes all the mayhem that ensues when other languages are translated into English. I first encountered it on a Japanese package of Dragon Ball Z trading cards, which proudly bore the words "Try to collecting and trading!" And it's been a constant source of hilarity ever since. Something about nonsensical phrases that undermine (or completely change) the intended meaning of a sentence is just a well of funny that never goes dry. Below are some of my favorite examples. Post your favorite Engrish from the internet, video games, t-shirts, menus, slogans, signs, or anywhere else it might pop up.

(from a Chinese Star Wars DVD. If you haven't seen the movie, Vader is saying "NO")

And last, here's a clip from a classic Newsradio episode:


Brian said...

I entered the famous first two lines from Shakespeare's Richard III into Alta Vista's Babel Fish. Japanese and then back again:

Now it is the winter of our dissatisfied beautiful summers which this son of the yoke forms.


Brian said...

Only I said son instead of sun the first time. Making that correction, it's even funnier:

Now depends on this sun of the yoke which is the winter of our dissatisfaction and can do beautiful summer

Jessie Clark said...

Too funny, Winnie. I loved the News Radio clip. Because who would write a book, have it translated into Japanese, and then back into English. I'll also make sure to put my daughter in the lake carefully.