Goldene Jubiläen

Die Queen feiert

Nun regiert die Queen seit 60 Jahren. Gefeiert hat sie ganze vier Tage. Schön eingekuschelt in einer Decke, mit einer Tasse Tee, selbst gebackenen Cupcakes und patriotisch meinen britischen Ring tragend habe ich mir am Sonntag die Bootsparade angeguckt. Herrlich, wie Engländer sich trotz eines miserablen Wetters freuen können. Und diese „Stiff Upper Lip“: die Queen und ihr Gemahl standen die ganze Zeit. Hut ab. Und der arme Duke of Edinburgh landete prompt im Krankenhaus mit einer Blasenentzündung.

Digressing again. Eigentlich wollte ich über die häufige Falschübersetzung vom Wort Jubiläum sprechen. Jubiläum heißt auf English nicht automatisch jubilee. Jubilee ist eher eine ganz groß angelegte Reihe von Veranstaltungen mit viel Tam-Tam. Es ist aber absolut passend für die Feierlichkeiten, die die Queen gerade hinter sich hat.

Neulich sah ich für Dienstjubiläum die grauenvolle Lösung „Service anniversary“.  Natürlich absoluter Quark. Ein 10-jähriges Dienstjubiläum könnte man als „1o-year anniversary“ übersetzen, aber wir würden eher sagen: „He/she celebrated 10 years of service with the company“.

Wenn eine Firma ihr 100-jähriges Jubiläum feiert, feiert sie „its centenary“ oder „its 25th/50th/75th anniversary“. Niemals wäre hier das Wort jubilee richtig.

Nun habe ich genug gejubelt und ziehe meinen Ring erst am Montag wieder an… (Aber eigentlich ist das die falsche Fahne!)

4 Antworten to “Goldene Jubiläen”

  1. Tony Mellor-Stapelberg Says:

    Dear Sally, I don’t know what you put in your Jubilee tea, was it some kind of „Pharisäer“? Because although your basic point is correct, that „Jubiläum“ does not automatically translate as „jubilee“, indeed more often than not it doesn’t, but should be translated „anniversary“, you are a bit imprecise, I think, about how the word actually is used. I would have thought the use simply to mean „eine ganz groß angelegte Reihe von Veranstaltungen mit viel Tam-Tam“ was pretty rare in modern English. Are you sure you weren’t thinking of „jamboree“? This word, which I always thought was of Indian origin but of which Chambers says “origin obscure”, is as far as I know only used officially by the Scout Movement for a major international gathering with, as you say, “viel Tam-Tam” (it was in my home town, Sutton Coldfield, that they held their “World Jubilee Jamboree” – both words together! – to celebrate 50 years of scouting in 1957); but it is also used informally or even a bit ironically for the kind of celebrations you are referring to.
    But in modern English “jubilee” is in my opinion exclusively used to refer to 25th, 50th and 60th anniversaries: silver, golden and diamond jubilees respectively. I don’t know any special word for other anniversaries between diamond jubilee and centenary, so what the Queen’s next celebration will be called I’ve no idea, but I am confidently looking forward to it in ten years’ time. My great-great-grandparents celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary in 1923, and as they had no name for it they called it their “radium wedding”, Marie Curie’s tour of the US being much in the news at the time. That seems to me to be non-starter nowadays, however. The word “jubilee” is rarely used without “silver”, “golden” or “diamond” attached, and I think only if the reader in fact knows which of the three kinds of jubilee is being referred to. An exception: Roman Catholic, and I think also Anglican, priests use the word “jubilee” to refer to special anniversaries of their entry into the priesthood, and I think, although I am not sure, that they use it already for the tenth anniversary.
    It is not correct to say that firms never use “jubilee” to refer to their anniversaries. The “Midland Red” bus company, officially the “Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Company“, now defunct and much lamented by bus-lovers, was established in 1904 and celebrated its Golden Jubilee in 1954. I remember it well…
    Anyway, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee was magnificent. I like your picture of memorabilia: someone gave us that figure of the waving Queen, in our case in a red coat; if anyone hasn’t seen them yet, they work by sunlight falling on a solar cell in her handbag. – Some years ago I bought a big Union Jack on a flagpole that had been used in the Hannover-British Society’s Crown Jewels exhibition, and I thought this was the time to bring it out and fly it – especially as our neighbours now have a flagpole in the garden and fly alternately Hannover 96 and Captain Sharky flags. So I got it out of the cellar, and what do you think I found? The flag, which is both nailed to the mast and secured by several complicated knots, is upside down!!! Couldn’t possibly display that…

    • Sally Massmann Says:

      Those are all good points. As far as jubilees are concerned, I will admit that I am very much coloured by what I’ve experienced in my own life. I remember the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. I was a young gal and very impressed by the fact that they extended the London underground and a tube line was named the Jubilee Line in honour of her 25 years on the throne. During all the Queen’s jubilees I’ve been around for there has been plenty of pomp and circumstance. At the last one Brian May played the National Anthem on the roof of Buckingham Palace and this time Madness did a marvellous video installation on the front. And there were pictures of people in Goring (village close to where I and incidentally Catherine Middleton lived) huddled around a table in macs and just making the best out of the wet weather. In the UK there was bunting everywhere you looked. So that’s „Tam-Tam“ in my book!

      As to the flag: that is a definite NO-NO! Hung up the wrong way round – you wouldn’t be able to show your face in Hemmingen again…

  2. Tony Mellor-Stapelberg Says:

    And an afterthought: I hope Seelmann-Eggebert got thoroughly told off by members of his audience for calling the river pageant „paygeant“ throughout the three-hour programme, and apparently persuading all the other TV journalists that this was the correct pronunciation! The BBC coverage was much criticised, and I think rightly so; but at least they got that right!

    • Sally Massmann Says:

      Oh, now that really is excrutiating. And a lot of online dictionaries have a pronunciation function on them these days too. My toe nails would have been curling up at that one…

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