Corpus-based approaches to the study of language and the compilation of a corpus are increasing at unprecedented rate in recent years. The majority of the corpus was compiled from newspaper articles or by combining literatures with non-literatures. Corpus in specialized fields is mostly related to legal language, with very few monolingual or parallel corpora in the technical field, not to mention diachronic corpus. The building of a corpus and corpus-based studies facilitates terminologists, translators, researchers, and teachers in specialized English a basis in their analysis and interpretation of specialized terminologies. Diachronic corpus helps us understand the development of language and explores the changes and uses of specialized language in a specific field, in order to provide terminologists and translators a reference when defining specific terms. This study compiles a diachronic corpus of Chinese patent claims and abstracts to explore the linguistic features of the Chinese patent language, the development and variations of patent language. With the diachronic corpus of Chinese patent claims and abstracts, the development of patent language can be analyzed. Patent is a strong indicator of the economic power of a country. The authentic material collected in the patent corpus provides representative research data, which in turn, increases our understanding to the language of patents.
Yvonne Tsai is an Associate Professor in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at National Taiwan University. She received her MA in Translation and Interpreting from the University of Bath and her Ph.D. in Translation Studies from Newcastle University. Her major research interests include patent translation, translation technology, and translation pedagogy.