This post at selfscholar is from September 13, but this “bug” has not been “repaired.” I just tried it not only with Khomeini, but with “prophet Muhammad,” and the honorifics were added. Google Translate Arabic, however, doesn’t do this.
“Google Translate’s Khomeini Problem,” from selfscholar, September 13:
Although tagged under “religious freedom,” this post more aptly applies to freedom from religion.
Launched in Summer 2009, in the midst of the protests in Iran, Google Translate’s Persian service “” as Farsi speakers can testify “” leaves a lot to be desired. However, it is enough to roughly translate social media or blog posts, which is why it was rolled out when it was.
Strangely, however, it contains some quirks. While it is unbeknownst to me whether this is the product of human provenance, or a machine error, since discovering it last year it has continued to bother me more and more.
The problem? Google Translate Persian adds Islamic religious honorifics after the names of not only Khomeini, but also a host of Shi”ite religious figures.
Whether alone, or in a sentence “” last name or full name “” the Arabic/Farsi letters (Ø±Ù‡) appear. In Persian religious literature, this abbreviation means, “May Allah’s mercy be upon him.” Or, “Rahmatullahi Alayh” (Ø±ØÙ…Ø© Ø§Ù„Ù„Ù‡ Ø¹Ù„ÙŠÙ‡) “” signifying the first and last letters of this phrase.
Therefore, when Google Translate spits out, “Ruhollah Khomeini was born in Iran,” in Farsi “” it is really saying, “Ruhollah Khomeini (May Allah’s mercy be upon him) was born in Iran.”…