In yesterday’s post, the article referred to set out some thoughts about the nature of legal translation in the Greek-English combination and some of the difficulties translators face. One of the issues raised was that other languages have often influenced English legal language.
The same is true of Greek legal language to a certain extent.
Certain words of Turkish origin testify to the 400-year occupation of Greece by the Ottomans. These words primarily relate to land law and can commonly be found in deeds relating to the conveyance of land on the Greek islands.
As Saltogianni said in the article, “In the case of Greece, we don’t face the problem to quite the same degree [as England] since the vocabulary we inherited from the various peoples who left their mark on Greece from time to time didn’t enter into the legal vocabulary. Rather, to put things more correctly, it didn’t enter Greek to the same degree as in English. In certain areas of Greece terms inherited from the Ottoman Empire are still used to a limited degree. On Rhodes for example, we can still find properties called mulks”[i].
Other types of land-holdings from the period of Ottoman rule one can still encounter when translating Greek land law texts are the waqf, mirie, metrouke and mevat.
An excellent resource explaining the intricacies of Ottoman land law and the different types of land-holdings can be found at http://ra.smixx.de/Links-A-E/Ottoman-Land-Code-1858–1927-.pdf