Agreeable eye.

an eudæmonistarchives

More specifically concerning: translation

31.03.02 – Sunday

Still reading Waley’s translation of Genji, with which we ‘are not best pleased,’ to borrow Waley’s idiom. (There are also several printers’ errors sprinkled liberally throughout the text, tho’ in our generous spirit we pretend not to mind them — but I hear there’s a new translation on the market…) However: A simple Chinese verse […]

Manipulus Vocabulorum

From an English rhyming dictionary, with Latin translations, compiled by Peter Levins in 1570 (EETS #27, 1867): In arke An Arke, archa, æ. ye Barke of a trée, cortex, icis, hic.      Carke, care, cura, cogitatio. A  Clarke, clericus, i. A  Larke, alauda, æ, galarita, æ. A  Marke, signum, scopus, i. A  Parke, damarium, vivarium. A […]

Terrible learning, Mr. Newman

Correctly,—ah, but what is correctness in this case? This correctness of his is the very rock on which Mr. Newman has split. He is so correct that at last he finds peculiarity everywhere. The true knowledge of Homer becomes at last, in his eyes, a knowledge of Homer’s ‘peculiarities, pleasant and unpleasant.’ Learned men know […]

Notes on not Englishing Homer

῎Ανδρα μοι ἔννεπε, Μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσε·1 Man, Muse — tell me about that trickster, tossed topsy-turvy since the time he torched Troy’s sacred towers… The main problem with it being (aside from its awfulness2 ) that the Greek is primarily plosive, while the translation is terribly dental. […]

irreptitious

Into my heart an air that kills     From yon far country blows: What are those blue remembered hills,     What spires, what farms are those? That is the land of lost content,     I see it shining plain, The happy highways where I went     And cannot come again. (from […]

fruits & spoils

The nourishing fruit of the historically understood contains time as a precious but tasteless seed.1 While content and language form a certain unity in the original, like a fruit and its skin, the language of the translation envelops its content like a royal robe with ample folds.2 – Walter Benjamin Illuminations, ‘Theses on the Philosophy […]

fructification

The reproductive instinct urges the poet to scatter his seeds beyond his boundaries. I repeat it: poorly transmitted, they fructify. Certain species (Pushkin) refuse transmission. But this does not prevent them from scattering at large and even when reduced to insignificance, from fructifying. Shakespeare remains the model of the explosive plant. His seeds have taken […]

those unheard

…she was like a book without any pictures. In other words, the kind of person who, unless you brought your whole soul to bear in reading them, would remain forever unknowable (116). A fall through the ice shapes the story. It is dramatic, inexplicable – and unexplained. The narrator is walking a dog, and then, […]

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