Translation is the silent waiter of linguistic performance: It often gets noticed only when it knocks over the serving cart. Sometimes these are relatively minor errors - a ham-handed rendering of an author's prose, the sort of thing a book reviewer might skewer with an acid pen.
But history is littered with more consequential mistranslations - erroneous, intentional or simply misunderstood. For a job that often involves endless hours poring over books or laptop screens, translation can prove surprisingly hazardous. Then Russian Premier Nikita Khrushchev's infamous statement in 1956 - "We will bury you" - ushered in one of the Cold War's most dangerous phases, one rife with paranoia and conviction that both sides were out to destroy the other.