Translation into Portuguese

Portuguese is one of the official languages of various international bodies. Portuguese communities, both big and small are found across all the continents.

Portuguese Around the World

Portuguese clearly refers to the mother tongue of Portugal, with nearly 10 million Portuguese speakers. The Portuguese territory extends to the Atlantic Ocean, including the island of Madeira and the Azores which account for a population of approximately 500,000.

Much like France and Spain, Portugal has historically set out to conquer the world. This is why Brazil, among other countries, became Portuguese-speaking. It is also the second country for which Portuguese is the official language. This vast Latin American territory has some 164 million inhabitants, a large majority of whom speak this language.

Portuguese is also the official language of five African countries, namely Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, São Tomé and Príncipe and the Cap-Vert.

In Asia, only a few islands have remained Portuguese-speaking. There are Macau and its casinos in China, Timor in Indonesia, Melaka in Malaysia, and finally Daman, Goa and Diu in India.

In total, around the world, there are approximately 200 million Portuguese-speakers.

Portuguese in the Professional Sphere

As it is spoken across all continents and in countries with strong development potential, Portuguese has become a language of politico-commercial exchange. As a result, several organisations in these areas have included it in their official languages. This is the case of the European where Portuguese is the third official language and a language of international communication, in the same way as English, French and Spanish.

The Southern African Development Community or SADC has institutionalised two official languages: English and Portuguese. This decision results from the fact that some of its founding members are English-speaking, that is Lesoto, Tanzania, Namibia, Botswana, Malawi and Swaziland. The two others, Angola and Mozambique are Portuguese-speaking.

Mercosur or Southern Common Market is an economic community, the members of which are Latin American countries. Portuguese, along with Spanish, is the official working language.

The Subtleties of the Portuguese Language

Due to the proximity of Brazil to the United States, the Portuguese spoken there is sometimes influenced by English. Media, for example, is ‘midia’ in Brazil and maintains the original Latin spelling in Portugal. In general, the European version of Portuguese is less likely to take words from other languages.

Still referring to vocabulary, ‘bunda’ means ‘bottom’ in Brazilian Portuguese, whereas in European Portuguese, the translation is somewhat vulgar: ‘ass’. To give another (less embarrassing) example, ‘fato’ can mean both ‘costume’ and ‘fact’. This is why, in order to have an accurate translation of documents from or into Portuguese, it is always advised to call on a professional translator who is familiar with all aspects of this language.