Help with English to Old Kanjis translation please!

So I was watching the EVO2K4 Trailer and the intro gave me a great idea, you know, that part where the fragment from The Art of War is displayed… and I think… “hey, this could be written on the sticks and could be cool if I could get the fragment translate into kanjis”

So I head over to Google Translate (my first mistake!) and I found nothing that I could be 100% sure of the meaning or the correct intension of the words, so here I am asking for someone who may be kind enough to help me with the translation of these to fragments:

The ultimate skill is to take up a position where you are formless…
If you are formless, the most penetrating spies will not be able to discern you, nor the wisest counsels be able to do calculations against you…
Therefore, your strategy for victories in battle is not repetitious, and your formations in response to the enemy are endless…
Those who are able to adapt and change in accord with the enemy and achieve victory are called divines…

-Sun Tzu
The Art of War

[COLOR="#000000"]and the other one

And then you asked: What the HELL are you!?
Well, I shall say? I?m God?s left hand? Devil?s right arm?[/COLOR]

I post it here because I’m building 2 arcade sticks and these fragments will be on the top panel of them, instead of custom art or plain color.

If this is not the right place, please move it to the correct one, but please at least give me some advice on how to get what I plan, I have already tried with some online translators but they keep giving me different kanjis every time.

My sticks will be piano black and I think that adding the kanjis would make them look stylish and elegant, no need to mention that the fragment from The Art of War will be more significant when I take the sticks to tournaments… although they would be in kanjis.

Sun Tzu was originally written Chinese, and fucking old old old ass chinese (2500 years)at that. so you would probably be better off trying to find a chinese+english edition of Sun Tzu of Art of war with the original Sun Tzu Chinese writing on one page and English translation to the other. I think I saw an edition where they have the section by section translation.

To clarify Kanji is written Japanese characters borrowed from Chinese. Written Chinese is called Hanyu.

From what I hear the original Chinese text reads like what is the equivalant of middle english, think newer than Beowulf but older than shakespere. So if you have a Chinese literate friend, it may be difficult for them if they don’t have University level Chinese reading to pick it out, or many of the characters meanings have changed.

Tthey even had to translate the classical chinese writing to modern simplified chinese.

So in conclusion, even if you get it correct, nobody, Chinese, Japanese, or English, nobody is going to be able to read it anyway, unless they are a chinese archeologist or a 2500 year old literate chinese.

Furthermore, good luck getting that to fit on a stick.

Like rtdzign said, you should get the art of war stuff from the original text. You can get it written in modern Chinese as well as classical, which would avoid the issues with readability of classical Chinese. Or if you want it legible in Japanese, get the Japanese translation.

But I should say, if you can’t read it, does it really mean anything?

Hanzi, actually. Hanyu generally refers to spoken Chinese.

yeah that makes sense. Sounds Hanzi sounds more like Kanji.

Hey, thanks a lot you guys… I was afraid of not getting any reply to this, and just to clarify, I already know that Japanese kanjis are characters interpretation from Chinese calligraphy, also The Art of War… and also I’m aware that no one would be able to read what is written on the panel but I don’t want to stand proud of my sticks with a bunch of mistakes on the meaning of the Kanjis or Hanzis… just to see a guy coming and tell me about those possibles mistakes and goes laughing at me… also you can’t deny that the art would be very nice and elegant if I could get it the most classic hazis.

I already tried so damn hard to find the fragment in the original Chinese calligraphy but no luck so far… heck, I’m considering to not wait until I find the oldest hanzis… at this moment I would very happy if I could find something even in modern simplified Chinese.

Anyway I will keep looking trying to find something, thanks for your help and just to finish… the panels of the sticks will be in 15" x 9"… so I was considering to put the hanzis on the left side of the panel… below or above the stick so they could be written in a clean and clear space.

Thanks again to all of you guys!


After a few minutes searching for the Chinese-English Edition, a friend just told me that he might had that book, so I will wait to see if the book contains what I’m looking for.

Anyway, I appreciated your help guys! As soon as I get finish the sticks I will post some pictures of them.

Not exactly, no, but this isn’t a language board so I won’t bore you.

Anyway, I found a website by googling “art of war in Chinese” that has the art of war in traditional and simplified characters, with translations. This ought to be what you’re looking for.

The Art of War - Chinese Text Project

Hey, thanks a lot for the link, this seems to be the best way to find out the correct Hazis for the fragment I want to use.