-->
Old English Translator Logo
Old English Translator Logo
Old English to
Modern English Translator
Help me keep this site free and ad-free; please donate now and help me cover my costs:

More info.
X

Old English, sometimes known as Anglo Saxon, is a precursor of the Modern English language. It was spoken between the 5th and 12th century in areas of what is now England and Southern Scotland.

Words can be entered directly including æ þ ð characters EG ofþryccaþ. Alternatively .ae (dot ae) will be substituted with æ, .th with þ, and .dh with ð. So ofþryccaþ could be written of.thrycca.th.

Version 3.2      Translation notes:      Changes:       NEW! Fuzzy matching: Can't find that Old English word, add :ia (or try :ca) to the end and repeat the search. e.g. try bewulf:ia

Translate this word:

To Modern English
   
To Old English
   
Reset


Version 3.2 - Latest change, fuzzy matching against root word.





Translating Old English to Modern English


To translate an Old English word into Modern English, the simplest method is to type (or copy/paste) the word into the area to the right of "Word to translate" and click / press the 'To Modern English' button and the results will then be displayed.

The character set you can use can contain the following characters:

ƿǣāċēġīōþȳáéíóúýæðÞ ABCDEFGHIJLMNOPQRSTUVWXYÐ abcdefghijlmnopqrstuvwxy

Words can be entered directly including these characters EG ofþryccaþ. Alternatively .ae will be substituted with æ, .th with þ, and .dh with ð. So ofþryccaþ could be written of.thrycca.th

Old English is an inflected language with each word having a number of different forms for the different cases. Supposing you saw the word 'ofþryccaþ' in a text and wanted to translate it. If you looked in a dictionary that simply contained the root words you would not find it as 'ofþryccaþ' is not the root word.

The Old English Translator contains all the case endings in it's database and will find the word.

The other problem that is often encountered is that the characters themselves often have a number of forms. In some cases these forms mean something and in others they don't.

For example; if you are looking for 'ofþryccaþ' and the dictionary has the word 'ofÞryccaÞ' or 'ōfþryccāþ' (note the different character formats) and a simple match is performed, the word will not be found.

The Old English Translator normalises the character sets and will find the word.

For example, if you paste in the word: ofþryccaþ (or ōfþryccāþ or of.thrycca.th) and click on the 'To Modern English' button, you get the following results:

translated word

You can see that ofþryccaþ is derived from ofþryccan  and relates to the present indicative plural case and the Imperative plural case.

If you paste in the word: éðelcyninges, you get the following results:

translated word

You can see that the supplied word is in red and is in the genitive singular.

Fuzzy matching Old English words against root word. NEW for version 3.2


What if you did not have an exact spelling of the word. I believe there is sometimes variations across different dialects? Or you were researching a word. Possibly looking for words containing sets or characters, or words that were something like a particular word.

With version 3.2 of the Old English Translator you can now 'fuzzy' match your word against all the root words (not against the inflected forms) in the database.

Three matching forms are currently available:
  • Contains approximately (:ca) - each root word in the database is checked against your word and if it contains 'something like' your word it is returned.
  • Is approximately (:ia) - each root word in the database is checked against your word and if it is 'something like' your word it is returned.
  • Contains exactly (:ce) - each root word in the database is checked against your word and if it contains exactly your word it is returned.
'something like' is vague! In each case (and depending on the length of the word) a given amount of character variation is allowed. The algorithms doing this comparison are quite complex.

To access this feature, you type (or copy/paste) the word into the area to the right of "Word to translate" and append the fuzzy identifier (:ca or :ia or :ce - colon followed by either ca, ia, or ce) to the word and then click on 'To Modern English'.

For example, supposing you did not know the correct spelling of Beówulf. If you enter bewulf:ia ( :ia - is approximately - look for words that are approximately like bewulf) and then click on 'To Modern English' you find the word Beówulf.

Also, supposing you want the find all the words containing something like 'monn'. Enter monn:ca (:ca contains approximately - look for words that contain something like 'monn') and then click on 'To Modern English'. You find a great number of words that meet this criteria.
  • mann - only one character substitution
  • Acemannesburg or Géolmónaþ or Midsumermónaþ - one character substitution contained in a longer word
  • celmertmon - one character deletion contained in a longer word
In some cases the search is too wide and you find many words that seem very unlike your word. In other cases you find very few words. I am experimenting with the searching algorithms to improve this.

Translating Modern English to Old English.


Type (or copy/paste) a word into the area to the right of "Word to translate" and click / press the 'To Old English' button. The Old English equivalent of Modern English words where the search word is found is the description are shown.

For example, type 'land' in and click on 'Modern English to Old English'!

Notes:

  • To prevent Old English Translator exceeding it's allowable resource quota, the number of 'first time' translation requests in a given time period is limited to one per ten seconds.
  • To avoid the dreaded 'system oversubscribed...' message, as far as possible, the design implements a form of application level caching. If you ask to translate a word that has already been translated it gets the translation from a cache (which is quick and doesn't cause a forced delay before another translation) rather than by searching the whole database. As the cache builds up and more words have been translated, the need for an enforced delay becomes less and the more words will get an immediate response. The effectiveness of this technique will depend on the degree to which people translate a common subset of words. Note that fuzzy searching does not use the cache.
Return to top
 

Who is interested in Old English?

Old English Translator Visitors Map
Source Google Analytics
Old English Translator Users per Country
Source Google Analytics
Copyright and Web Design by Blue Engine Web Development © 2008-2018