Synonymy and Polysemy in Legal Terminology and Their Applications to Bilingual and Bijural Translation
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The paper focuses on synonymy and polysemy in the language of law in English-speaking countries. The introductory part briefly outlines the process of legal translation and tackle the specificity of bijural translation. Then, traditional understanding of what a term is and its application to legal terminology is considered; three different levels of vocabulary used in legal texts are outlined and their relevance to bijural translation explained. Next, synonyms in the language of law are considered with respect to their intension and distribution, and examples are given to show that most expressions or phrases which are interchangeable synonyms in the general language should be treated carefully in legal translation. Finally, polysemes in legal terminology are discussed and examples given to illustrate problems potentially encountered by translators.