Definition of translate
1a : to turn into one's own or another languageb : to transfer or turn from one set of symbols into another : transcribec (1) : to express in different terms and especially different words : paraphrase (2) : to express in more comprehensible terms : explain, interpret
2a : to bear, remove, or change from one place, state, form, or appearance to another : transfer, transform translate ideas into actionb : to convey to heaven or to a nontemporal condition without deathc : to transfer (a bishop) from one see to another
3 : enrapture
4 : to subject to mathematical translation
5 : to subject (genetic information) to translation in protein synthesis
1 : to practice translation or make a translation; also : to admit of or be adaptable to translation a word that doesn't translate easily
2 : to undergo a translation
translatabilityplay \(ˌ)tran(t)s-ˌlā-tə-ˈbi-lə-tē, (ˌ)tranz-\ noun
translatableplay \tran(t)s-ˈlā-tə-bəl, tranz-\ adjective
Examples of translate in a Sentence
My client speaks only Spanish. Will you translate for me?
The French word “bonjour” translates as “hello” in English.
We need someone who can translate Japanese into English.
We have translated the report.
The book has been translated into 37 languages.
Can you translate this technical jargon?
Seventy million Americans—that translates into one American out of every four—are under the age of 24.
Recent Examples of translate from the Web
Having to work part-time throughout my junior and senior years to provide for my personal expenses taught me the importance of independence, which translated into understanding myself more.
This translates into a loss of around 600 residents from a typical county.
Kinderdijk, which translates to children's dike, lies in the Alblasserwaard polder (land that's been reclaimed from the sea, marshes or river floodplains) at the confluence of the Lek and Noord rivers.
The daily grind of Spaniards trails the sun, which often translates into late dinners and less sleep.
A national study last year of 21 other water agencies that offer subsidies found that 3 percent to 4 percent of ratepayers enroll in such programs, which would translate to between 7,500 and 10,000 customers in San Diego.
From that point on, Leahy was determined to translate her passion for live performance and sports into a career.
Just in the U.S. that translates to a $210 billion hit to the economy every year.
The reptile – a new species of pliosaur – has been named Luskhan itilensis, which translates as spirit and master of the Volga River.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'translate'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of translate
TRANSLATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of translate for English Language Learners
: to change words from one language into another language
: to explain (something) in a way that is easier to understand
: to have the same meaning
TRANSLATE Defined for Kids
Definition of translate for Students
1 : to turn from one language into another
2 : to change from one form to another Let's translate words into action.
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up translate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).