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E4NET teams up with the National Institute of Korean History to make the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty available to a global readership

E4NET


Thursday, 24 January, 2013

The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty is a well-documented compilation of that era’s historical record that is listed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register. The NIKH (National Institute of Korean History) outsourced the pilot project of translating selected sections of the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty from Chinese characters into English to E4NET.

The project’s mission was to translate the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty into English as well as build a database of translation for use as examples and reference materials for subsequent translations and research. E4NET delivered accurate English translations of the archived records of government organizations, public offices, and cultural and historical characteristics of the Joseon Dynasty.

E4NET formed a team of experts well versed in English and Joseon Dynasty history to meet the demanding schedule and goals of this project. All translators directly translated the source contents written in Chinese characters into English to avoid any misinterpretations. It was challenging to assemble a team of experts equipped with both the linguistic and historical knowledge to complete this project. 

Translating Chinese characters that were written hundreds of years ago into modern English is a daunting task, even for professionals who are well acquainted with both English and Korean history. Translators frequently raise queries during translation. Therefore, E4NET and NIKH have weekly meetings to address all issues from translators as well as any potential problems, and decisions from the meetings are shared with all translators, editors, proofreaders and project managers involved in the project.

The completed English version will be published on the website of the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty in early 2013 for easily searchable access to the translated contents. This will be especially helpful to students and researchers studying Korean history and culture to understand the Joseon Dynasty. It will take decades to translate the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty entirely so this project marks the first milestone in a long literary journey through Korea’s rich historical records. 

 

About NIKH (National Institute of Korean History)

The NIKH (National institute of Korean History), since its foundation in 1946 following Korea’s liberation from Japanese occupation, has made significant contributions to the study and distribution of information reflecting Korea’s lengthy and remarkable past. Prominent among these historical publications are The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty (Joseon wangjo sillok) and The Records of Royal Secretariat (Seungjeongwon ilgi). The NIKH is regarded as the most respected institute for research on Korean history having published Korean History (Hanguksa, 25 vols., 1973-1984) and the expanded new edition of Korean History (Hanguksa, 52 vols., 1993-2002). The NIKH is currently engaged in a project to publish A Cultural History of Korea (Hanguk munhwasa, 60 vols). In addition, the NIKH provides web-based access to important materials like the Annals of Joseon Dynasty, as well as seminal primary source materials and other information on Korean history offline. The NIKH has been appointed as the Center for Korean History Information by the Ministry of Information and Communication, in which 19 related organizations participate. Thus, the NIKH serves as the central hub of Korean historical information and provides enormous databases for researchers and citizens online. 

 

About E4NET

E4NET was established in 1995 as a software and solution provider under the corporate name of Jusan Information and Communication, which was changed to E4NET in year 2000. In 1997, E4NET began its localization business as a Microsoft-authorized partner and the company has since provided localization and globalization services for many major companies such as Oracle, Microsoft, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, LG Electronics, Sony, BMC Software, BEA Systems, Borland, and 3Com. From its humble beginnings as a single language provider with one office, E4NET has steadily strengthened its operations to become a globalization provider covering more than 40 languages.

 

About the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty

The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty is a compilation of 28 annals of 25 kings spanning 472 years-- beginning with the Annals of Taejo (r. 1392-1398) and ending with the Annals of Cheoljong (r. 1849-1863). The accumulation of these veritable records began after a king's death; the Joseon government set up an ad hoc office charged with amassing the historical records of the deceased king’s life and rule. This archival system offers readers first-hand accounts of events that have not been filtered by the personal perspective of a historian. 

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