African Journal of
History and Culture

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Hist. Cult.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6672
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJHC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 172


Lessons in translation: The English to Tiv example

Ikyer, Godwin Aondofa
  • Ikyer, Godwin Aondofa
  • Department of English, Federal University, Dutsin-Ma, Katsina State, Nigeria.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 09 November 2013
  •  Accepted: 14 May 2014
  •  Published: 30 June 2014


This paper examines the art of translation, the necessity of translation, the odd ends of translation, and how mistranslation can cause drastic changes in perceptions and policies and also alter a course of life and culture of a people. The paper supports its presentation with a historical analytical survey of misguided translation of English to Tiv lexicon and sentences, and how it affected an appreciation of the Tiv people and their psychology. It records how Christian religion of the colonial days in Tiv land was literally routed due to the “Traduttoru Traditore” misinformation given to its converts by her own translators. Finally, the paper provides a guide towards effective translation. 
Key words: Translation, culture, Traduttoru Traditore, Tiv.