Guinea Pig Appreciation Day – 16 July

Guinea Pig

Believe it or not, today is Guinea Pig Appreciation Day around the globe! In the office we are big fans of the little fluffy creatures, so we thought we would bring you some fun trivia about them! Continue reading Guinea Pig Appreciation Day – 16 July

新年快乐 – 10 + 1 facts about Chinese New Year!

Chinese New Year is upon us! Celebrate the Year of the Pig in style with First Edition’s 10 + 1 facts about Chinese New Year!

Year of the pig

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Happy World Poetry Day!

Happy World Poetry Day!Come and join First Edition’s virtual celebration of the UNESCO World Poetry Day! Read some of our team’s favourite (translated) poems below both in the original language and in English. Continue reading Happy World Poetry Day!

Famous female translator: Émilie du Châtelet

Today is International Women’s Day and as French is the Language of the Month here at First Edition, we thought we’d bring you the famous female French translator, Émilie du Châtelet as a way of celebrating both!Émilie Du Châtelet

Continue reading Famous female translator: Émilie du Châtelet

Burns Night – Celebrating the world-famous Scottish poet

Burns NightBurns Night is upon us, with an abundance of haggis, the “great chieftain o’ the puddin’-race” and whisky and poetry! Many poetry lovers come together every year on 25 January, the birthday of Robert Burns, the great Scottish poet and celebrate him by consuming typical Scottish food and drinks. This is a tradition that has been kept since 1801, when his friends gathered together five years after Burns’s death to commemorate his life and work.

While informal gatherings of friends might just enjoy a bit of haggis and (a bit more) spirits, formal Burns suppers actually have a set standard order, starting with a piper greeting guests, welcoming speeches, then several courses of delicious Scottish food with toasts and poetry recitals. Even the haggis is addressed by the host before it is ceremoniously cut. The feast is then closed by everyone joining hands and singing Auld Lang Syne, one of Burns’s most famous poems.


Traditionally haggis is made of offal, oatmeal and various spices but vegetarians and vegans should not despair as there are several non-meaty options available, too. Haggis is often served with “neeps and tatties” which is Scottish for mashed swede and potato. Oh, and don’t forget a wee dram, either!


Source of image: Wikimedia Commons

A year in the life of First Edition

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

This year certainly has not been any less busy than the previous one: we’ve handled over a 1,000 memorable translation projects, including museum guides, cookery books, children’s books, pharmaceutical translations, technical websites and tourist brochures.

Besides the usual hustle and bustle of a translation company, there have been some special moments, some highlights for the year. In January, we welcomed a new member to our team: Ben Ablett, our Head of Sales and Marketing who has been helping us to further develop the business. In March there was another joyful arrival, Frieda, the new baby of Melanie from the Editorial Team. In March we also attended the prestigious London Book Fair which always provides a good opportunity to catch up with our valued clients and translators. May was a month for innovation as we learnt about the latest developments in the world of translation software at the SDL Trados Road Show in London. In October, we ventured a bit further afield and travelled to Frankfurt in Germany for the world-famous book fair to meet some of our lovely clients and translators in person. The end of the year also had some adventures in store: Ana, our Commercial Translations Manager visited Prague for a conference on Project Management, organised by Elia, the European Language Industry Association.

And there we go – with all this excitement the year is already at an end. We cannot wait to find out what interesting projects the new year will bring.

We would like to thank you for being such great clients and translators throughout this remarkable year. We are looking forward to working together with you again on new, exciting projects in 2018!

Apostrophe Hell – Part 3: Is it all Greek?


Apostrophe Hell
Dumichka was nearly finished for the day when the phone rang. It was DC Dash from the local police station.

“I was wondering if you can help us with this one, it’s not a straightforward request” started DC Dash, and Dumichka braced herself for another late finish.

Providing translation and interpreting services for the police was an exciting and challenging job, and even though she knew she won’t get to leave work on time today, she couldn’t wait to hear what the request was – to her it was like taking part in one of those detective stories that she liked reading. Besides, if she was late enough, she might just miss all the trick-or-treaters at home…

“What it is, we’ve had two shops vandalised tonight”, DC Dash started explaining. “Both done by what looks like people wearing costumes. Very different costumes – one dressed like a banana, and the other one – like some kind of two-headed monster. What is similar is that in both places, they’ve left the same note, kind of like a graffiti sprayed on the wall. It looks like a word but we can’t make anything out of it, looks like another language, so I was wondering if you can take a look at it for us and see if you can work out what language it is, and what it means.”

“Sure, can you send us a picture of it?”

“Yup, just give me 5 minutes”.

Dumichka waited with growing curiosity for the email to arrive. A few minutes later it flashed in her inbox, and she opened the attachment to have a look at the word.


She could tell immediately that it was Greek, and was beginning to guess what it means, but had to check with one of the qualified translators first.


Apostrophe”, she told DC Dash on the phone a few minutes later, “It’s the Greek word for Apostrophe”.


Later that evening, Dumichka watched the news with a sense of achievement as the reported talked about the swift arrest made after two shops were vandalised this evening. The perpetrators were a group of grammar vigilantes who explained that they couldn’t stand it when they saw the sign “Banana’s 20p each”, with an apostrophe in it.

“Bananas are not in possession in 20p each! They are just plural!!!

“And then that department store with their ‘Womens clothing’ – ‘women’ is already in plural, you can’t make it even more plural!!!”

They had then decided to give the shop owners a grammar lesson they will never forget…

Apostrophe Hell – Part 2: Plurality


Apostrophe Hell - Part 2

Jenna’s first week at the new job was going better than expected. So much so that her manager had today trusted her with the revamp of the women’s clothing department.

She waited until the shop was closed and all customers gone, and set out to reorganise everything according to the plan she had sketched the day before.

Now everything was ready, it was time to put the final touches. She had managed to convince her manager that a new sign was needed at the top of the escalator where the women’s department started, and, being keen and efficient, she’d had the sign designed and printed it herself:


When the sign was stuck to the glass pane, she stood back and looked proudly at her work. Her manager would be impressed, no doubt.

Then she heard the noise.

It was coming from the front door, and she walked over to see what it was, thinking that one of the other shop assistants had probably forgotten their phone or something and was now back to retrieve it. As she was walking towards the door, she could see the shadow, but there was something weird about it, as if they were holding a balloon or something. Birthday? She smiled, preparing to greet them, but her smile soon froze and she let out a terrified shriek.

At the entrance of the shop stood several grotesque figures – they were two headed women! She couldn’t tell how many of them were there as the multiple heads, arms and bodies could barely be separated into individual beings… What she could tell without any doubt was that they were not happy at all…


(story by Svetlana from our sister company, Cintra)

(photo by Carsten Frentzl)

Apostrophe Hell – Part 1: Possessed


Apostrophe Hell - Part 1Hugh was shutting his shop down for the day at 6 o’clock as usual. It had been a good day. He was really pleased with the sales – putting the sign on the shop window about the promotion on the bananas


had helped to shift almost all he had in stock and now the cash register was full.

Hugh locked the shop door, pulled down the blind and went through the door at the back of the shop which led, via a narrow staircase, to his apartment above.

He showered quickly, put the frozen pizza into the oven, and soon settled in front of the TV with his pizza and a bottle of beer.

A reporter on the news was covering the events of the day which included another round of negotiations in Brussels, the biggest supermarket chain running out of Halloween consumes, and an orangutan running away from the zoo.

Then he heard it.

At first he paid no attention to the noise. The street was often noisy with the eclectic mix of residents and their matching lifestyles and sleeping patters.

Then he suddenly realised it was coming from the shop below. He jumped on his feet and run downstairs to check. Had he left a window open? Had that flipping cat made its way in again, pushing the kiwis from the shelf? Or could it be a burglar?

Nothing could have prepared him for what he saw when he opened the door to the shop…

A large, yellow and menacing banana was breaking its way into the cash register. Annoyed not to have found what it was looking for, it started walking towards him, a terrifying expression on its smooth yellow face.

“Where is it?” shouted the banana.
“What…” murmured Hugh in disbelief.
“Where’s my 20p???”


(story by Svetlana from our sister company, Cintra)