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Translation for tattoo 結痂


Zainajenkins

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Hey so I am planning to get a tattoo in chinese characters. Before you critisize and tell me how I shouldn't do this because I won't understand it blah blah blah, understand that I am learning mandarin and that is the reason I want the tattoo in 漢字(汉字)。I would say I am close to the intermediate level and have wanted this tattoo for several years. I need help with the translation of "beautiful scars" here are a few ways I have found of translating it, let me know what you think!

結痂(结痂) got this translation from the title of a song by 楊丞琳(杨丞琳)and most of the time I've seen it translated as "A beautiful scar" (even on the CD cover that I own) but sometimes I see it translated as "beautiful scab" and I don't want to have it say "scab"

美疤 literally just taking "beautiful" and "scar" and putting them together (don't know it it's grammatically correct)

美疤痕 another translation I put together, again I don't know if it's grammatically correct.

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结痂 just means to get crusty/scabby or form the scab lol so when I saw just the title of the thread I thought "that's a really ironic and kind of gross tattoo". It definitely does not have any meaning of beautiful in it.

 

I think it depends more on what the meaning you want it to have. Like even the English it can sound kind of figurative if you're not actually talking about the physical scar on your body but the remnants of past emotional pain and how beautiful it is or whatever? Or do you just want straight literal beautiful scar, like it's on your body and it is in the shape of a flower and you're like "man that's a beautiful scar"?

 

美丽的疤痕

美丽的伤疤

 

Are not tattoos I would get, but they both mean beautiful scar.

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The reason behind wanting a tattoo that means "beautiful scar" is because I have alot of scars all over my body from a past event and for a long time I wore long sleeves/pants to hide them but over time I've accepted the scars and wore normal clothing, etc. I want the tattoo as a reminder, literally want it to mean "beautiful scars" like the scars are beautiful.... (when normally they are not)

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Google image search 結痂 and then decide again if you want to get a tattoo of those characters.

 

Song/album names are often not translated literally.

 

Edit: didn't notice the above post. My first thought was “瑕不掩瑜”, which is a chengyu, but I think it sounds too arrogant ("I'm so great regardless of my flaws"), and it also doesn't encapsulate the meaning that the flaws themselves are beautiful. It's also not commonly used to describe people, and tends to refer to abstract defects rather than physical blemishes.

 

Maybe try something like “瑕亦為美” - flaws/blemishes are beautiful too. That's not a chengyu, though, so I'd recommend checking with as many native Chinese speakers as you can.

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Partly because you actually have scars, so it seems like it's merely describing them. Almost seems like it should have an arrow tattoed from the words to the scars themselves in case people couldn't work out which scars it was referring to.

 

Imagine you had luxuriant chest hair instead. Would you tattoo "beautiful chest hair" on yourself? Probably not.

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No but I may just get the thing in english saying "beautiful scars" I wanted it in hanzi because it is personal and don't just want anyone to be able to understand and it and because chinese characters are beautiful themselves.

If it was in english would you still say the same thing? That I'm merely describing my scars? The fact is even though they are ugly, to me they are beautiful.. that's the whole point.

I'm wondering if the translation is suppose to get lost a little anyways since it's a meaningful tattoo only to me, does it have to make perfect sense?

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It is of course your right to get any tattoos you choose to, or indeed none at all. However, I would caution that “美丽的疤痕” seems like a strange tattoo to me, and will also seem strange to many Chinese people. As you're learning Mandarin, you might even come to view it as strange yourself. There are a few reasons it could be seen as strange. The phrase doesn't have any particularly aesthetically pleasing or poetic quality to it; it's in Modern Standard Chinese, rather than Classical Chinese; and it's essentially a descriptive phrase (despite the fact that “美丽” is subjective, it's still descriptive).

 

If you do end up getting any Chinese character tattoo (again, I'd recommend “瑕亦為美”, subject to second/third/fourth opinions from native speakers), make sure you first get a mock-up of the tattoo drawn. Show it to someone who knows about Chinese calligraphy, and ask them if it is written well. Even better, get someone who is good at Chinese calligraphy to write it for you, and then ask the tattoo artist to work from that. Best of all, find a tattoo artist who is also a Chinese calligrapher, but I'd imagine they're quite difficult to find. :wink:

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I don't think the above is particularly accurate regarding 美丽的疤痕. The latter part I agree with re: who you should get to do your tattoo.

I think Duck feels that 美丽的疤痕 is not figurative enough. Correct me if I'm wrong. But I think it would be more bizarre and overly cryptic to tattoo 瑕亦为美 on yourself if your message is supposed to be about body positivity considering it is like a "hey I'm still beautiful in spite of all this stuff" vs. what you seem to want which is "this stuff is all beautiful". There is a book by 齐继赣 that is titled 美丽的疤痕 which is about figurative scars as well as those from physical trauma. I would say it means pretty much just what you want it to mean. Do you have other tattoos? People without tattoos often don't get that it's not really about whether other people "get it" or not. You said you want "beautiful scars" as in "my scars are beautiful to me", and so I would put 美丽的疤痕. If you want something more like "even scars can be beautiful" then go with 瑕亦为美 I guess. Though I have some concerns about how cheesy it sounds.

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As you're learning Mandarin, you might even come to view it as strange yourself.
I agree with Duck and I think this is something to keep in mind. It's a bit difficult to articulate in English why 美丽的疤痕 sounds odd (to me). Perhaps it's a bit like tattooing 'long legs' on your legs (if you have long legs). It's just desciptive, there doesn't seem to be any deeper meaning to it. Whereas 'beautiful scars' in English does have some poetic value.

 

Would you consider waiting for a bit until your Chinese is good enough to tell good phrases from bad? As to a tattooist, perhaps find one in China, assuming you plan to go there at some point. You'll have better chances of finding one there that is good at calligraphy and Chinese characters.

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Have a look here and see what other people have done. Some are very close to what you are trying to express.

 

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=inspirational+quotes+about+scars&biw=1227&bih=691&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&sqi=2&ved=0CCcQsARqFQoTCNaE_oXR28cCFWya2wodSsMHig

 

Every scar is a medal.

 

A scar is a tattoo with a better story

 

and so on.

 

Maybe one of these in English would be better.

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It's not really helping when duck is explaining how this phrase as a tattoo isn't going to work but then 陳德聰 is encouraging me with ideas... if it cleanly translates to "beautiful scars" then what's the problem? I mean I get what duck is saying.. sort of but also what 陳德聰 says makes sense because I want a literal translation... as long as it means "beautiful scars" and not beautiful scabs then that's okay.. it doesn't have to be poetic.. either way it has MEANING, meaning "beautiful scars"..

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Duck, that doesn't quite hold up though, I wouldn't advise 我有美麗的疤痕 over 美麗的疤痕 just because it's a statement.

 

Fair point. I guess it's because without that, people who saw the tattoo would fill in the blanks in their own minds.

 

[These are] beautiful scars [arrow pointing to scars].

 

Anyway, “美丽的疤痕” is a good literal translation, which is what OP wanted.

 

Edit: missed this in an earlier post

 

I think Duck feels that 美丽的疤痕 is not figurative enough. Correct me if I'm wrong. But I think it would be more bizarre and overly cryptic to tattoo 瑕亦为美 on yourself if your message is supposed to be about body positivity considering it is like a "hey I'm still beautiful in spite of all this stuff" vs. what you seem to want which is "this stuff is all beautiful".

 

Cheesy or not, “瑕亦為美” isn't anything like "I'm still beautiful in spite of this stuff", it's "flaws are beautiful too". Completely different meaning to “瑕不掩瑜”.

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if it cleanly translates to "beautiful scars" then what's the problem?
It has a different ring to it than the English. It sounds more like 'these scars look quite nice', and not nearly as much like the title of a CD or a motto or something, as the English does. Your body, your scars, your tattoo, but I'd advice against it. You could do worse than 美丽的疤痕, but since this will be on your body for at least as long as the scars themselves, you really need the best possible phrase not just one that's kind of okay.
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I disagree completely as I've said above. How exactly is a book title different from a CD title?

@Duck

When I said "in spite of", I am talking about implication rather than literal meaning. Why do you have to say they're beautiful "too"? It reminds me of a hashtag we had at my uni which was "iamubc" which featured almost exclusively white folk, which was bizarre considering how diverse the student population is, but then some groups wanted to start a hashtag "iamubctoo", which I thought made little sense. I believe in hijacking the narrative rather than trying to squeeze yourself in at the margins. I see this the same way. People don't see these scars as beautiful but the OP does, so why does it have to be "too"? Why can't they just be beautiful?

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