I'm trying to learn a new language, and looking for works with interleaved Norwegian-English texts. It can be either alternating sentences, paragraphs, or pages, so that I can juxtapose the corresponding vocabulary, structure, et cetera in the two languages without much difficulty. The genre is not of much importance for now.

Is there a particular name for this formatting I can use as a keyword for my searches? I am asking for the naming for this book format, rather than resources themselves. I came across a term "parallel text".

  • Which I notice that you used in the heading of your question. Searching for bilingual or parallel Beowulf gives you very similar results in a search-engine. Nov 14, 2018 at 15:05
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    Penguin has a series called "parallel text": penguinrandomhouse.com/series/BMH/penguin-parallel-text
    – muru
    Nov 14, 2018 at 15:25
  • @MoziburUllah yeah, but apparently the word I used in the header was the only word I did not search in Google :) When I did that, I found out that "parallel text" and "parallel corpus" are the terms for a bilingual work and a collection of them.
    – corsel
    Nov 14, 2018 at 15:25

1 Answer 1


As you have already found out, if texts are presented side by side, these are known as parallel text; in the case of translations, the usual term is bilingual parallel text.

Bilingual parallel texts can be used as a language learning resource; see for example the article 6 Spots to Pick Up Texts in the Bilingual Parallel Universe on FluentU. There are entire corpora of parallel texts; see for example OPUS - an open source parallel corpus. For other examples, see for example this parallel translation of Beowulf and this parallel German translation of the Kalevala.

If the translation is not presented on the facing page but on lines that alternate with the original text, this is called interlinear translation. For example, there are interlinear translations of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, of the Bible


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