Translation from old German

Need help with translating WW1, Inter-War or WW2 related documents or information?
lohengrin
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Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 11 Feb 2019 01:16

Hello -

I have received 2 letters from a Saxon royal family and I would like to know if anyone could kindly assist with a translation. Both messages are written in a the German Kurrent, so they were not very easily to deciphere. There is a possibility of error due to me misreading the text... I would like to know if someone could translate these two short notes for me and tell me if they are grammatically correct... I tried Google, but the translation was horrible...

(It looks like) Ihre Kgl. Hoheit - (This is smudged)
Herr Johann Georg Prinz von Sachsen,

Ew. Königlichen Hoheit,

Erlaube ich mir mitzuteilen, daß nunmehr das abgeänderte Testamentsvollstreckerzeugnis heute vom Gericht mir zugesandt worden its. Testamentsvollstrecker im Nachlaß Weiland S. Königlichen Hoheit Prinz Albert sind nunmehr: Graf Harrach und ich.

Ich bin Ew. Kgl. Hoheit ergebenster
(Signature)


Second short note:

Lieber Otto,

Friedrich und ich bitten Dich und die Deinen, von uns Sterbebildchen meiner (not sure about this word - it is smudged) Mutter, sowie folgende Andenken anzunehmen: für Dich eine von Deiner Mutter gemalte Porzellanschale, sowie eine von Anna gefertigte Plakette Papas und für Maria ein Bild ihrer Mutter, das aus dem Besitze Großmamas stammt.

Mit den Herzlichsten Grüßen,
(Signature)

Thank you,
Clara

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 11 Feb 2019 09:31

Hi Clara,

I will give your 2nd letter a try.

"Dear Otto,

Friedrich and I are asking you and your dear ones/family to accept a memoriam card of our mother, and following souvenirs:
- For your a bowl made of porcelain and painted/daubed from your mother.
- as for Anna a badge of Dad
- for Maria a picture of her mother from the former possession of grandma.
With kind regards,
"signature" "

I guess you have a reading error for the first souvenir, it´s rather "bemalte" than "gemalte" as the later would mean that she did paint the bowl on a sheet of paper or other material instead that the mother did decorate the bowl itself. But of course it´s also possible.
There´s also confusion for the 2nd present. Anna must be, In my opinion, a further recipient as the writer uses the plural "your dear ones" which he/she wouldn´t when the only other recipient is Maria. In your transcribtion is Anna someone who made the souvenir.
Please provide the original to be certain.

I would also like to see the original of the 1st letter as there are also errors in this text, but they may be caused by the different German of that time.

Regards,
Roman

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 12 Feb 2019 21:30

Dear Roman -

Thank you for the kind message and the translation. It makes much more sense.

The letter 2 is written exactly as stated with the exception of the “meiner” - I am not sure that was correct. As strange as it sounds, it does say “gemalte”, I checked the letter “g” and compared it to “b” and it is 100% “g”. I think that Anna did make the badge with a portrait of his father that was presented as second gift to Otto, together with the porzelan bowl. Maria received the picture of her mother only.

By the way, to give you a bit of context Friedrich in the 2 letter is a son of the author!

Both letters are written in very strange (old) German. Both authors of these letters were educated in Munich and Vienna in 1800s.

I tried to take photos of both letters, but the text is so faint, that the photos look blank, unreadable... so sorry!!

I went over both texts and it seems I got it correct, although I am not sure “Ihre” is the correct word in the first letter... Any additional feedback would be fantastic!!

C.

GregSingh
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by GregSingh » 13 Feb 2019 00:38

That's how I see the first one:
Your Royal Highness,

Allow me to inform you that the amended Executors Certificate has been sent to me today by the Court.
Executors of the estate of late? Royal Highness Prince Albert are now: Count Harrach and myself.

Most devoted,
(sig.)
If we become increasingly humble about how little we know, we may be more eager to search.

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 13 Feb 2019 12:24

Hello Clara,

if it´s "gemalte" then according to my knowledge of the German language it´s not a decorated/daubed porcelain bowl but a picture of a porcelain bowl. At least when we use the term "gemalt" in nowadays meaning.
After reading the 2nd letter again I come even to a different result when ignoring the comma:
[...] für Dich eine von Deiner Mutter gemalte Porzellanschale [,] sowie eine von Anna gefertigte Plakette Papas [...]
= for yourself a porcelain bowl painted by your mother as well as a bagde showing Papa/Dad made by Anna.

A little coma makes a big difference.

Roman

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 13 Feb 2019 12:46

Greg, I don´t know if this version doesn´t fit better:
"Executors of the last will/testament of the former Royal Highness Prince Albert are now: Count Harrach and myself."
"Testamentsvolstrecker" is here https://tinyurl.com/y3nw8qne] translated with "executor/administrator of a will" but we don´t need to repeat it as it´s already mentioned in the sentence, right?

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 13 Feb 2019 18:19

GregSingh wrote:
13 Feb 2019 00:38
That's how I see the first one:
Your Royal Highness,

Allow me to inform you that the amended Executors Certificate has been sent to me today by the Court.
Executors of the estate of late? Royal Highness Prince Albert are now: Count Harrach and myself.

Most devoted,
(sig.)
Thank you very much Greg! That is super helpful!!

Much appreciated...

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 13 Feb 2019 18:19

history1 wrote:
13 Feb 2019 12:24
Hello Clara,

if it´s "gemalte" then according to my knowledge of the German language it´s not a decorated/daubed porcelain bowl but a picture of a porcelain bowl. At least when we use the term "gemalt" in nowadays meaning.
After reading the 2nd letter again I come even to a different result when ignoring the comma:
[...] für Dich eine von Deiner Mutter gemalte Porzellanschale [,] sowie eine von Anna gefertigte Plakette Papas [...]
= for yourself a porcelain bowl painted by your mother as well as a bagde showing Papa/Dad made by Anna.

A little coma makes a big difference.

Roman

Thank you Roman - that is truly great!!

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 13 Feb 2019 18:49

history1 wrote:
13 Feb 2019 12:46
Greg, I don´t know if this version doesn´t fit better:
"Executors of the last will/testament of the former Royal Highness Prince Albert are now: Count Harrach and myself."
"Testamentsvolstrecker" is here https://tinyurl.com/y3nw8qne] translated with "executor/administrator of a will" but we don´t need to repeat it as it´s already mentioned in the sentence, right?

I have a few more questions, if I may...

For the past 11 years I have been writing a book on intricacies within German Royal families, covering the period between 1880-1930. I may never actually finish it, but if I do I want to make sure that the original texts are grammatically sound.

As written by me above (sans the comma in the second letter) are there any other changes that need to be made to the texts above...?

Also, an this is just out of curiosity, if the first letter was written to a woman (e.g. Princess instead of Prince). Would the text change in any way?

Thank you and best regards,
Clara


—-1

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 14 Feb 2019 14:47

Apart from the salutation "princess" and of course the name everything would be the same when your first letter woudl be adressed to a woman.

Regarding the grammar of the letters. The "weiland" (1st letter) needs to start with a small letter, same is valid for the "...herzlichste Grüße" in the 2nd letter as it´s an adjective. Except it is the beginning of a sentence, but this is not the case here. There´s also the typo "its" instead "ist" in the following sentence: "daß nunmehr das abgeänderte Testamentsvollstreckerzeugnis heute vom Gericht mir zugesandt worden ist."

Cheers,
Roman

GregSingh
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by GregSingh » 15 Feb 2019 00:43

Weiland was written with a capital letter out of respect for a person no longer with us.
That's why I think "Late" is a better option in English for "no longer alive" than "former".

Here is an example:

Amts- und Intelligenzblatt des Königlich Bayerischen Rheinkreises 1836.jpg
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If we become increasingly humble about how little we know, we may be more eager to search.

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 15 Feb 2019 14:59

history1 wrote:
14 Feb 2019 14:47
Apart from the salutation "princess" and of course the name everything would be the same when your first letter woudl be adressed to a woman.

Regarding the grammar of the letters. The "weiland" (1st letter) needs to start with a small letter, same is valid for the "...herzlichste Grüße" in the 2nd letter as it´s an adjective. Except it is the beginning of a sentence, but this is not the case here. There´s also the typo "its" instead "ist" in the following sentence: "daß nunmehr das abgeänderte Testamentsvollstreckerzeugnis heute vom Gericht mir zugesandt worden ist."

Cheers,
Roman
Brilliant-thank you so much, Roman!

lohengrin
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by lohengrin » 15 Feb 2019 15:06

GregSingh wrote:
15 Feb 2019 00:43
Weiland was written with a capital letter out of respect for a person no longer with us.
That's why I think "Late" is a better option in English for "no longer alive" than "former".

Here is an example:


Amts- und Intelligenzblatt des Königlich Bayerischen Rheinkreises 1836.jpg

Thank you Greg! Most interesting

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 15 Feb 2019 15:35

"former = verflossener, verflossene, verflossenes" [= the deceased]
"formerly = weiland" [= the deceased]
Source: https://dict.leo.org/englisch-deutsch/former

If you think that "late" fit´s better, no problem.
But "weiland" is written with and without a capital letter, eg.
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Last edited by history1 on 15 Feb 2019 15:44, edited 1 time in total.

history1
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Re: Translation from old German

Post by history1 » 15 Feb 2019 15:42

An example with capital letter (I wasn´t able to recognise a system when using a capital letter or not):
annoshow1.jpg
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