a friend of mine just came back from England after about five years' living there. she wrote a book in chinese about this life experience there.

i helped her translate the book from chinese into english for future publication in england.

but as a chinese, i am not too confident of my translation,

so i would be very obliged if you could do me a favor by proofreading some of my translations.

that's not hard for any native english reader, as it is your language, what you need to do is just to read it and correct some mistakes.

thank u, if you are interested in this, pls contact me, i may ask the author to add your name to the book.

my email: Email Removed

the following is one of my translation:

28 A romantic pile——Leeds Castle

The most ancient and romantic castle of all England is the Leads Castle, situated in Kent which is about 100 kms, southeaster London. The castle has a long historical story to tell. It was first built of stones by the Norman nobles during their reign about 900 hundred years ago. In the following three centuries, Leeds Castle had been the palace of six queens.

The first of the queens was Eleanor, princess of Spain, who saved her husband Eric’s life when he was in the dangerous moment of being assassinated. Her deed won her the favor of the King, whose most pleasant days were spent with her in this castle.

Another romantic story in castle was about the window of Henry V, Queen Catherine. She fell in love with a handsome page, and they were secretly married. Their son later became father of Henry Tudor, who later established the great Tudor Dynasty after a glorious history in a fierce battle. The first son of Henry Tudor was Henry VIII.

In the later days, Leeds Castle was successively owned by three rich English families as a gift from the Royal or as a property bought with money.

In 1926, Leeds Castle was bought by the 26-year old Madame Bell, and she had the whole castle refurnished several times, making this legendary castle more decent and graceful. Madam Bell’s life experience added mystery to the castle as well. She had an Anglo-American parentage, and was educated in France. Her extraordinary elegance could be discerned from every bit of her efforts in restoring the castle. She married three times, each of which brought her fame and profit. In her days of old age, Madame Bell consecrated the Leeds Castle to the state for commonweal purposes of art, charity or academic conference.

One day in summer, I went to Kent from London alone to visit the ancient castle with infinite charms that needed to be found not only with your eyes but also your heart.
On entering into the gate, I first saw a boundless green field and an old water-surrounded castle not far in a misty fog, making me feel like roaming in a fairyland. The path along the lake led me to the entrance of the castle. By the lake were trees with intense leaves.

The dark swans swimming in the lake was a unique scene in the castle, whose vermeil beaks, dark bright wings, slender long neck along with their gracious swimming posture, and the primitive simplicity made me think of the proud and wild ballet dances of the dark swan in Swan Lake.

Walking across the small bridge above the water, I went inside of the castle. Ancient stone walls, bulky stelae and wooden beams. An oil painting was hanging in the hall very observably. In it Madame Belle and her two daughters were sitting by the castle windows. Outside were shining lake, vernal field and azure sky. Rays shone through the windows and upon the three glaring women.
Following the sign’s direction, I first went down into a cellar. Under all the buildings of the late period the George Dynasty was a cellar of Norman style. It was cool and dry, ideal place to store wines. Two rows of huge barrels were placed on both sides of the cellar, with the tasty wine in all of them. A narrow and low stone flight was leading up to the great hall of the first ground floor.

The banqueting hall of Henry VIII was in the middle of the gallery and the chapel. The bulgy panes’ frames were installed in 1517. The ceiling of robur and the floor of ebony from France were all carefully chosen by Madame Belle. The rectangular wooden table of the 17th Italian style was said to be from a monastery. On the French-styled mantelshelf of the 16th century was carved a half-length embossment. The iron-back of the fireplace was founded during the reign of the Edward IV, and it was of British manner. On the platform of the fireplace were standing a Mediterranean vase of the 17th century and a mug inlaid with pearls. Before it were a set of Italian armchairs of the 15th century, with a broad tapestry of the 16th century on the wall.

Through the corridor of the gateway, I entered into the drawing room, which used to be a study. In 1927, it was converted into a dinning hall with yellow ribbons and big windows extending down to the ground. Since 1949, it had been a drawing room packed with British furniture of the 17th and 18th centuries. In the room some diaphanous Chinese porcelains were on display along with two reading lamps of the Kangxi’s reign of blue and white, a pair of carmine eagles of Qianlong’s reign, ( (Qianlong&Kangxi: eminent emperors of China’s Qing Dynasty), and five carmine/rouge tall vases. Above the fireplace was a three hundred years old huge mirror with gilded frames of French style. On both sides of the study were dark sandalwood bookshelves adorned with brass, above each of which was a still life oil painting. The carpet of the drawing room was hand woven by the monks in the Petersburg Abbey.

In the history of a castle, dogs are an indispensable part. In Leeds Castle, there were various breeds of dogs, such as hunting dogs, house-guarding dogs, and lop-ear dogs. The dogs’ chaplets museum had a large collection of over 400 years, most of which were donated by private persons. The well-designed chaplets of different textures were also exhibition of humans’ deep love toward their loving dogs.

When I walked out of the castle, I walked along the causeway of the lakeside, and the stall, flower garden, birds garden, maze and caves were all within my sight. In the greenhouse of the flower garden, there were plants that had been gathered from America since 1730, such as the short chestnuts, olives, ginseng fruits, indigo seedlings, etc. The colorful fresh flowers in the greenhouse are used to decorate the castle, and the intoxicating wines in the vineyard are products branded as “Leeds Castle” in markets besides as nectars on the castle owner’s tables. The taste of the wine is invigorating, and it is greatly welcomed by both guests and customers.

Among the numerous castles in Britain, Leeds Castle is the most charming one with its unique history and fascination of the stories, attracting thousands of visitors every year. The warring smoke in the castle has gone away and only the romantic ambience is still haunting/embracing the castle like a dreaming world.

For this sort of project you are really going to have to use a professional editing service, it is beyond the type of assistance we are able to offer here. I doubt anyone will have the time to help you with writing a whole book and besides, we don't really think it ethical to take work away from pro editors.

However, I am a little puzzled about the target readers for this book. I can see that a diary of a visit might be interesting to readers in China. However, who would read this in England? Perhaps if your friend really concentrated on making it the 'Chinese experience in the UK' it might be interesting to English readers but I don't think you have the knowledge and writing skills to compete with the serious guidebooks already in existence.

I'm afraid that some of your facts are rather off, and your word choices.

What is interesting to your Chinese readers is different to what would be interesting to British readers. To be frank, I think it needs re-writing rather than just editing, as you are not writing near enough to a professional level for publication.

Sorry to sound so negative, I do wish you luck with your Chinese publication but I think you need to think very carefully about the readers you would want to target with an English edition, and how to make the book appeal to them. Perhaps you could try a professional translator or at least editor.
i may ask the author to add your name to the book.

not even tempted, nona?? [:^)]