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Golden Translator

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No translation is perfect. Every language (at least according to some anthropologists) has its own point of view or way of looking at the world. This is one of the main reasons why, whenever possible, many people try to read literary works in their original language: it's the best way of experiencing the author's original intent. Your average translator may know two languages very well, but they may lack sensitivity, resourcefulness, or just the "poetic talent" needed to make a perfect translation. Something gets lost along the way.


But there is another possibility: that the translator is an author in their own right. There's no better translator for a literary work than another literary author, who has both the knowledge and the writerly skill.

A Golden Translator is a prestigious or canonical writer in the same genre (or sometimes another genre) that translates works into their native language, perhaps even uplifting the value of the translated work to the new audience. They may introduce little variations in order to maintain or even "improve" the spirit of the original work.

Contrast with "Blind Idiot" Translation. Compare with Tactful Translation for the "improving" role.