When Tattoos are poorly translated…
These people apparently didn’t think twice before checking what their tattoos meant. So, the outcome was hilarious and sad at the same time, but if nothing else, they gain some internet popularity and a lifetime joke inked on their bodies. That’s why, be very careful whenever you decide to get yourself inked. It’s for life.
1 “Babylon is the world’s leading dictionary and translation software”
Tale as old as time, this girl wanted to write “I love____ ” (insert boyfriend’s name) in Hebrew and tried to accomplish the task using Babylon translation software. Huge mistake! What does this Hebrew tattoo read? “Babylon is the world’s leading dictionary and translation software”. Well, she’s a walking commercial for them now.
2 “I’m for free”
Ouch! This poor girl wanted her Hebrew tattoo to say a spiritual “I am free.” But, something went wrong with the translation so she got her Hebrew backwards, but that’s the least of her troubles. This unfortunate creation actually says “I’m for free”. You thought tramp stamps were terrible? Not anymore!
3 “You Shall Not Tattoo”
On the website where this picture was originally posted, it was labeled as “Honor thy Father and Mother.” But people who know Hebrew probably laughed their brains out. This Hebrew tattoo in fact says: “You shall not tattoo,” and it’s written in Rashi Script of all things – an old Hebrew script used to write comments in religious texts.
4 “I am slow”
Tian, an Arizona-based amateur linguist, runs the Hanzi Smatter blog, a site dedicated to Asian language tattoos gone wrong. So this guy translates Chinese tattoos for people who probably should have sought him out, or any Chinese-speaking friend, before getting their flesh indelibly inscribed. In this case, this tattoo translates to: “I am slow.” What the owner thought it meant: “To excel”; “Strength”; “To persevere”; “To find happiness.” Well, apparently he wasn’t good enough for any of those phrases.
5 “I married a moron”
It’s okay to laugh out loud, because we did too. A man wrote Hanzi wondering what his girlfriend’s tattoo meant. I’m sure he wasn’t happy with the answer: 夫 (man/husband), 首 (head/neck), 空 (empty/void) which in free translation would mean something like “I married a moron.” Sweet!
6 “No translation”
This is what happens when you trust Google translate. This poor unfortunate soul tried to translate his name in Russian, hoping to see how his name would be written in Cyrillic. Instead, Google offered the words you can see written on his back, which mean “no translation”. Oh well…
7 Patience as if the people who see a doctor, or?
Patients are a virtue for doctors, indeed. (In Spanish, “patients” and “patience” are homonyms). We hope he doesn’t realize his tattooed mistake.
8 “It swims happens by chance”
Every tattoo has a deep meaning and permanent markings meant to reflect an individual’s artistic taste or a way to share their favorite mantras and words to live by. For the Brazilian woman in the picture, that bit of ageless wisdom just so happens to be: ”It swims happens by chance.” Deep? Not so much. If you’re confused as to what the tattoo means, blame it to a bad translation. As it turns out, the Portuguese word nada (nothing), is a homonym with the third-person conjugation of nadar (to swim) — leading the phrase “Nada acontece por acaso” (Nothing happens by chance) to be irreversibly inked as something markedly less meaningful.
9 “As who am I wearing away for myself, I only set (it) down for/on myself, strong man (that I am)?”
This is the shoulder of Danielle Lloyd, a “celebrity” who has sought to bring the prestige of a Latin tattoo to her body, alongside a unique Hebraic tattoo (that when translated, it is absolutely meaningless). Her press release told journalists that her tattoo meant: “To diminish me will only make me stronger.” But it turned out that only one word is correct, namely and that is “tantum”. The actual “meaning” is: “As who am I wearing away for myself, I only set (it) down for/on myself, strong man (that I am)?” As for her Hebraic tattoo, it is supposed to say “Only God can judge me, only God can judge me.” Well, you better repeat that twice.