History of Simultaneous Translation: from the courts to the schools

Simultaneous translation came from the need to reach agreements through communication. From the times of the Vikings’ raids and conquest of Europe, until today, the conciliation between parties with different dialects has been crucial in history.

Read on and learn about the origin of this practice and its importance in contemporary times.

First records of simultaneous translation

Although since old times, translation and interpreters have been relevant, the true emergence of simultaneous translation dates back to the early 20th century. This is because it had a main function during the end, and subsequent agreement of the First World War and the consolidation of the Treaty of Versailles.

According to the records, on this occasion the translation was made from English to French, with short sentences and in a leisurely manner.

In this way, simultaneous translation was consolidated and began to form an important part of all political and economic agreements worldwide. As it happened during the Second World War or the Cold War.

Other important contexts

Beyond the official discourse on the origin of modern translation, it could be said that the clandestine use of this practice was also relevant from the late 19th century, until well into the wars of the 20th.

Perhaps one of the most relevant spaces for simultaneous translation were the secret meetings and conferences given by members of the Communist Party in different parts of the world.

In other words, this tool was used by people of all classes, ideologies, and nationalities, as an important way to break down language barriers in order to spread their political desires.

And what is the current situation?

It is impossible to know how many translators and interpreters there are in the world. This profession, like many others, has hundreds of branches and specializations.

What we do know is that it is one of the most important and sought-after professions, since phenomena such as globalization and the digitization of life are leading us to an increasingly connected world.

Enter our site and find out about all the translation, interpretation, and recording services that we can offer at EPLS for you and your company.

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written by mktg the 14 October, 2021


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