Ten of the Most Translated Books Around the World

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Translating a book is one of the most hectic jobs in the literature industry. However, it’s equally important if you want to catch a global audience. That’s why experts suggest getting help from a professional translation service provider specialising in literary translations.

According to research, the Bible is the most translated book globally, with translations available in around 3,350 languages. But if you consider non-religious books, you might not be surprised that children’s collection of books tops the list.

So, before we move on to the top ten translated books in the world, let’s first understand why translation is essential.

Why is Translation Important?

Translations allow you to communicate with people who speak different languages. It lifts the barrier for both parties allowing for seamless communication regardless of borders. Be it a book, brochure or any business, you need a professional translation service agency to make the best of your content.

Top 10 Translated Books in the World

Book reading is essential as it helps you grow and understand life from different perspectives. For many, books are a way to escape and get lost in an imaginary world. So, it’s not at all surprising to know that linguistic experts have translated thousands of books. Here are the top 10:

Les Aventures de Tintin

The Adventures of Tintin is one of the most famous European comics, especially in the 20th century. Its original language is French, and the comic series has been translated into 110 languages.

George Remi, a Belgian cartoonist, created the albums of this comic under the pen name Hergé.

The theme of The Adventures of Tintin specifically targets children. However, adults also admire and love reading this comic series. The storyline is about spreading good wherever you go, as the main character, Tintin, did.

You will also find other core values like fighting for justice and resisting unfairness in this book.

El Ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha

The Ingenious Don Hidalgo Don Quixote of La Mancha is a famous book in world literature. It has been translated into over 145 languages, according to The Guardian. This book is also called the first modern novel.

The word “quixotic” originated from this book which means idealistic and impractical, especially when chasing a goal. The credit goes to the author of The Ingenious Don Hidalgo Don Quixote of La Mancha, Miguel Cervantes. You will find two parts of this book that launched in 1605 and 1615.

Harry Potter

Harry Potter is famous for the excellent pen work of J.K. Rowling. Apart from the on-screen work of the characters, Harry Potter’s author has brilliantly portrayed his life.

This series was initially published in English and translated into over 80 languages. Although the story doesn’t relate to reality, Harry, the main character, shows us how to be persistent in hard times. The whole theme revolves around magic and domination.

The literary work of J.K. Rowling inspired many young readers, and we might not see anything close to Harry Potter in this genre.

Le Petit Prince

The Little Prince is the most loved book by children and has been translated into 300 languages. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, the author of this novel, clearly states that responsibility in our relationships is the key to understanding.

Many readers consider this novel a parable as it teaches many other lessons. However, you will find different reviews based on different perceptions. For example, some might say The Little Prince is a science-fiction with an optimistic approach. Others might claim that the whole book reflects pessimism.

Le Avventure di Pinocchio

The Adventures of Pinocchio is a fantasy novel that is also a part of textbooks for its moral values. This novel has been translated into over 260 languages, and children love reading this book. You might also have seen The Adventures of Pinocchio at the bedside in many homes.

The story is about a wooden puppet who dreams of becoming a real human. He goes through different adventures and makes mistakes which eventually make him wise.

One of the famous parts of this novel is Pinocchio’s long nose which usually happens when he lies.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll wrote this English novel which is a story about a young girl named Alice. This book has been translated into 174 languages and still captures young and old audiences. The story is quite simple yet fascinating when Alice falls into a world of magic.

She gets lost and finds nowhere to go. The magical world is full of weird people, and she counters various problems.

Andersen’s Fairy Tales

This book is a set of 156 stories translated into over 160 languages. Hans Christian Andersen, the author, has a global impact as each story touches on cultural values. Some of the more well-known stories are:

  • The Ugly Duckling
  • The Emperor’s New Clothes
  • The Princess and the Pea

Astérix le Gaulois

Asterix the Gaul is a comic book series on Gaulish warriors. It has been translated into 116 languages and is the most famous in Europe.

The story sends readers back to 50 BCE when Roman forces were undefeatable and tried to rule the whole continent with their might. During such barbarism, a group of Gaulish warriors prepared a rebellion and armed themselves to defend their village.

Kon-Tiki Ekspedisjonen

The Kon-Tiki Expedition is the true story of Thor Heyerdahl’s journey in 1947, which began in Peru and ended in Polynesia. But what’s so interesting about that?

The Norwegian writer depicted his journey from South America to Polynesia and explained his viewpoint regarding the South Americans.

His writing has been translated into 70+ languages and has become a bestselling book.

Pippi Langstrump

Pippi Longstocking is a children’s book that became famous due to the epic story of a young girl. The book has been translated into 70 languages.

The main character, Pippi, gets her strength and wisdom from her father, a pirate. You will find more books in the same series (10 titles).


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