A short history of translation through the ages

LogoMarieBy Marie Lebert, version of 9 December 2016.

This article (a work in progress) was inspired by the Wikipedia entry on translation, which led up to other readings on Wikipedia and elsewhere. This is what Creative Commons (CC) is about: build up our work on the work of others before allowing others to build up their work on ours. Medieval translators for example were known for valuing openness and freedom, and would have certainly liked the CC licenses. Their translations had a major impact on scholarship and the advancement of society, and contributed to the development of vernacular languages and national identities around these languages. Translators went on playing a key role in many disciplines. But translators have often become “invisible” in the 21st century, with a precarious life and their names forgotten on press releases and book covers, as stated in an open letter released by a major translators association in October 2016. There is much to do to acknowledge (again) the translators’ key role in knowledge, science, literature, culture and art. [pdf & epub]

* Definition
* In Classical Antiquity
* In Late Antiquity
* In the Middle Ages
* In the 15th century
* In the 16th century
* In the 17th century
* In the 18th century
* In the 19th century
* In the 20th century
* In the 21st century
* Bibliography


Translation is often defined as the communication of the meaning of a source-language text by means of an equivalent target-language text. The English word “translation” derives from the Latin “translatio”, meaning “carrying across” or “bringing across”. The Ancient Greek term for “translation” is “metaphrasis”, meaning “speaking across”. It has supplied English with “metaphrase”, i.e. a literal or word-for-word translation – as contrasted with “paraphrase”, i.e. a saying in other words or a sense-for-sense translation. To this day, “metaphrase” and “paraphrase” are concepts that mark the extremes in the spectrum of possible approaches to translation. Generally, the greater the contact and exchange that have existed between two or more languages, the greater is the ratio of metaphrase to paraphrase that may be used in translating among them.

In Classical Antiquity

A secular icon for the art of translation is the Rosetta Stone, a rock stele inscribed with a decree issued in 196 BCE in Memphis, Egypt, on behalf of King Ptolemy V. The same decree is inscribed in three scripts: Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs in the upper text, Demotic script in the middle text, and Ancient Greek script in the lowest text. The Rosetta Stone was discovered in 1799 during the Napoleonic expedition to Egypt. It has been on public display at the British Museum in London almost continuously since 1802, and has become the most visited object in the museum. The upper text of the Rosetta Stone also provided the key to the understanding of Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.

An older icon for the art of translation is the Sumerian “Epic of Gilgamesh” (c.2000 BCE), an epic poem from Ancient Mesopotamia often regarded as the earliest surviving great work of literature translated by contemporaries into Southwest Asian languages, because of a longstanding tradition of translating material among Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Syriac, Anatolian and Hebrew. A third icon for the art of translation is the “Treaty of Kadesh” (1274 BCE), a bilingual Egyptian-Hittite treatise that is the only ancient Near Eastern treatise in which the versions of both sides have survived.

The translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek in the 3rd century BCE is regarded as the first major translation in the Western world. The dispersed Jews had forgotten Hebrew, their ancestral language, and needed the Bible to be translated into Greek to be able to read it. This translation is known as the “Septuagint”, a name that refers to the seventy translators who were commissioned to translate the Hebrew Bible in Alexandria, Egypt. Each translator worked in solitary confinement in his own cell, and according to legend all seventy versions proved identical. The “Septuagint” became the source text for later translations into Latin, Coptic, Armenian, Georgian and other languages. Related biblical texts in Hebrew were also translated into Greek in Alexandria during the two following centuries.

The translator’s role as a bridge for “carrying across” values between cultures has been discussed since Terence, a Roman playwright who adapted Greek comedies into Roman in the 2nd century BCE.

The debate relating to sense-for-sense translation vs. word-for-word translation also started around that time. The coiner of the term “sense for sense” is said to be Jerome in his “Letter to Pammachius”. While translating the Bible into Latin (later known as the “Vulgate”), Jerome stated that the translator needed to translate “not word for word but sense for sense” (“non verbum e verbo sed sensum de sensu”).

Cicero also famously cautioned against translating “word for word” (“verbum pro verbo”) in “On the Orator” (“De Oratore”, 55 BCE): “I did not think I ought to count them [the words] out to the reader like coins, but to pay them by weight, as it were”. Cicero, a prominent philosopher and writer, was himself a translator from Greek to Latin, and compared the translator’s work to that of an artist.

The actual practice of translation seems to have hardly changed since Classical Antiquity. Except for some extreme metaphrasers in the early Christian period and in the Middle Ages, and adaptators in pre-Classical Rome and in the 18th century, translators have generally shown prudent flexibility in seeking equivalents – metaphrases where possible and paraphrases where necessary – for both the original meaning of a text and other crucial components like style or verse form.

In Late Antiquity

Kumārajīva, a Buddhist monk, scholar and translator, is known for the prolific translation into Chinese of Buddhist texts written in Sanskrit, a monumental work that he carried out in the late 4th century. His most famous work is the translation of the “Diamond Sutra”, an influential Mahayana sutra in East Asia, and an object of devotion and study in Zen Buddhism. A later copy (dated 868) of the Chinese version of “Diamond Sutra” is “the earliest complete survival of a printed book”, according to the website of the British Library (that owns this piece). Kumārajīva’s translations had a deep influence on Chinese Buddhism, with a clear and straightforward text focusing more on conveying the meaning than on precise literal rendering. His translations are still more popular than later, more literal translations.

The spread of Buddhism led to large-scale ongoing translation efforts spanning more than a thousand years throughout Asia, and in a rather short time in some cases. The Tanguts for example took mere decades to translate volumes that had taken the Chinese centuries to translate, for two reasons: first, they exploited the newly invented block printing; second, they had the full support of the government, with contemporary sources describing the Emperor and his mother personally contributing to the translation efforts, alongside sages of various nationalities.

Large-scale translation efforts were also undertaken by the Arabs after they conquered the Greek Empire, for all Greek philosophical and scientific works to be available in Arabic.

In the Middle Ages

Latin was the lingua franca of the Western learned world throughout the Middle Ages, with few translations of Latin works into vernacular languages. In the 9th century, Alfred the Great, King of Wessex in England, was far ahead of his time in commissioning vernacular translations from Latin into English of Bede’s “Ecclesiastical History” and Boethius’s “The Consolation of Philosophy”, which contributed to improve the underdeveloped English prose of that time.

In the 12th and 13th centuries, the Toledo School of Translators (Escuela de Traductores de Toledo) became a meeting point for European scholars who – attracted by the high wages they were offered – came and settled down in Toledo, Spain, to translate major philosophical, religious, scientific and medical works from Arabic, Greek and Hebrew into Latin and Castilian. Toledo was a city of libraries offering a number of manuscripts, and one of the few places in medieval Europe where a Christian could be exposed to Arabic language and culture.

The Toledo School of Translators went through two distinct periods. The first period (in the 12th century) was led by Archbishop Raymond of Toledo, who advocated the translation of philosophical and religious works, mainly from classical Arabic into Latin. These Latin translations helped advance European Scholasticism, and thus European science and culture. The second period (in the 13th century) was led by King Alfonso X of Castile himself. On top of philosophical and religious works, the scholars also translated scientific and medical works. Castilian – instead of Latin – became the final language, thus resulting in establishing the foundations of the modern Spanish language.

The translations of works on different sciences (astronomy, astrology, algebra, medicine) acted as a magnet for numerous scholars, who came from all over Europe to Toledo to learn firsthand about the contents of all those Arab, Greek and Hebrew works, before going back home to disseminate the acquired knowledge in European universities. While some Toledo translations of physical and cosmological works were accepted in most European universities in the early 1200s, the works of Aristotle and Arab philosophers were often banned, for example at the Sorbonne University in Paris.

Roger Bacon was a 13th-century English scholar heralded for his early exposition of a “universal grammar” (the concept that the ability to learn grammar is hard-wired into the brain). He was the first linguist to assess that a translator should know well both the source language and the target language to produce a good translation, and that the translator should also be well versed in the discipline of the work he was translating. According to legend, after finding out that few translators did, Roger Bacon decided to do away with translation and translators altogether. But his decision did not last long. He relied on many Toledo translations from Arabic into Latin to make major contributions in the fields of optics, astronomy, natural sciences, chemistry and mathematics.

The first fine translations into English were produced by Geoffrey Chaucer in the 14th century. Chaucer translated the “Roman de la Rose” from French, and Boethius’s works from Latin. He also adapted some works of the Italian humanist Giovanni Boccaccio to produce his own “Knight’s Tale” and “Troilus and Criseyde” (c.1385) in English. Chaucer is regarded as the founder of an English poetic tradition based on translations and adaptations of literary works in languages that were more “established” than English at the time, beginning with Latin and Italian. The finest religious translation of that time was the “Wycliffe’s Bible” (1382-84), named after John Wycliffe, an English theologian who translated the Bible from Latin to English.

In the 15th century

Byzantine scholar Gemistus Pletho’s trip to Florence, Italy, pioneered the revival of Greek learning in Western Europe. Gemistus Pletho reintroduced Plato’s thought during the 1438-39 Council of Florence, in a failed attempt to reconcile the East-West schism (a 11th-century schism between the Eastern Orthodox and Catholic churches). During this Council, Pletho met Cosimo de Medici, the politician ruling Florence and a great patron of learning and the arts, and influenced him to found a Platonic Academy. Led by the Italian scholar and translator Marsilio Ficino, the Platonic Academy took over the translation into Latin of all Plato’s works, the “Enneads” of Plotinus and other Neoplatonist works. Marsilio Ficino’s work – and Erasmus’ Latin edition of the New Testament – led to a new attitude to translation. For the first time, readers demanded rigor of rendering, as philosophical and religious beliefs depended on the exact words of Plato and Jesus (and Aristotle and others).

The great age of English prose translation began in the late 15th century with Thomas Malory’s “Le Morte d’Arthur” (1485), a free translation/adaptation of Arthurian romances about the legendary King Arthur, as well as Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin and the Knights of the Round Table. Thomas Malory “interpreted” existing French and English stories about these figures while adding original material, e.g. the “Gareth” story about one of the Knights of the Round Table.

In the 16th century

Non-scholarly literature continued to rely on adaptation. France’s Pléiade, England’s Tudor poets and the Elizabethan translators adapted themes by Horace, Ovid, Petrarch and modern Latin writers, forming a new poetic style on those models. The English poets and translators wanted to supply a new audience – created by the rise of a middle class and the development of printing – with “works such as the original authors would have written, had they been writing in England in that day” (Wikipedia).

The “Tyndale New Testament” (1525) is regarded as the first great Tudor translation, named after William Tyndale, the English scholar who did most of the translation. This translation was also the first Bible translation to work directly from Hebrew and Greek texts. After translating the whole New Testament, Tyndale translated half of the Old Testament. He became a leading figure in Protestant Reformation before a death sentence for an unlicensed possession of Scripture in English. The “Tyndale Bible” was completed by one of Tyndale’s assistants, and became the first mass-produced English translation as a result of new advances in the art of printing.

Martin Luther, a German professor of theology, was a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation, and translated the Bible into German in his later life. He was the first European to assess that one translates satisfactorily only toward his own language, a bold statement that became the norm two centuries later. The publication of the “Luther Bible” contributed significantly to the development of the modern German language.

Along with the “Luther Bible” in German (in 1522-34), two other major translations were the “Jakub Wujek Bible” (“Biblia Jakuba Wujka”) in Polish (in 1535), and the “King James Bible” in English (in 1604-11), with lasting effects on religion, language and culture in Germany, Poland and England. These translations showed disparities in crucial words and passages, and contributed to some extent to the split of Western Christianity into Roman Catholicism and Protestantism, on top of the Protestant Reformation’s goal to eliminate corruption in the Roman Catholic Church.

The Bible was also translated into Dutch, French, Spanish, Czech and Slovene. The Bible in Dutch was published in 1526 by Jacob van Lisevelt. The Bible in French was published in 1528 by Jacques Lefevre d’Étaples (also known by his Latin name Jacobus Faber Stapulensis). The Bible in Spanish (“Biblia del oso”) was published in 1569 by Casiodoro de Reina. The Bible in Slovene was published in 1584 by Jurij Dalmatn. The Bible in Czech (“Bible kralická”) was printed between 1579 and 1593. The translations of the Bible in Christian Europe were a driving force in the use of vernacular languages, and contributed to the development of all modern European languages.

In the 17th century

The Elizabethan period of translation saw considerable progress beyond mere paraphrase toward an ideal of stylistic equivalence, but no progress at all for verbal accuracy.

Cervantes, a Spanish novelist famously known for his “Don Quixote” (1605-15), expressed his own opinion on the translation process by offering a rather despairing metaphor for the end result of translations. According to Cervantes, translations of his time – with the exception of those made from Greek into Latin – were like looking at a Flemish tapestry by its reverse side. While the main figures of a Flemish tapestry can be discerned, they are obscured by the loose threads and lack the clarity of the front side.

In the second half of the 17th century, the English poet and translator John Dryden sought to make Virgil speak “in words such as he would probably have written if he were living and an Englishman”. But Dryden discerned no need to emulate the Roman poet’s subtlety and concision. On the contrary, Dryden’s contemporary translator Alexander Pope reduced Homer’s “wild paradise” to “order” in his translation of the Greek epic poet’s work into English.

John Dryden described translation as the judicious blending of metaphrase and paraphrase when selecting “equivalents” for the expressions used in the source language. He wrote that, “when [words] appear… literally graceful, it were an injury to the author that they should be changed. But since… what is beautiful in one [language] is often barbarous, nay sometimes nonsense, in another, it would be unreasonable to limit a translator to the narrow compass of his author’s words: ’tis enough if he choose out some expression which does not vitiate the sense” (cited in Christopher Kasparek, “The Translator’s Endless Toil”, 1983). Dryden cautioned, however, against the license of “imitation” in adapted translation: “When a painter copies from the life… he has no privilege to alter features and lineaments…” But he also observed that “translation is a type of drawing after life…”, thus comparing the translator with an artist, a few centuries after Cicero.

In the mid-17th century, the French philosopher and writer Gilles Ménage coined the term “belles infidèles” (beautiful unfaithful) to suggest that translations, like women, can be either faithful or beautiful, but not both. He was commenting on translations by Nicolas Perrot d’Ablancourt, a contemporary French translator of the Greek and Latin classics: they “remind me of a woman whom I greatly loved in Tours, who was beautiful but unfaithful” (cited in Amaro Hurtado Albir, “La notion de fidélité en traduction”, Didier Érudition, 1990). Perrot d’Ablancourt was following the somewhat contentious practice of Valentin Conrart, a French author and a founder of the Académie Française, by modifying or modernizing expressions in the original text for reasons of style. The term “belle infidèle” was later picked up and popularized by other French authors such as Huygens and Voltaire.

During the second half of the 17th century, “faithfulness” and “transparency” were better defined as dual ideals in translation, while often being at odds. “Faithfulness” is the extent to which a translation accurately renders the meaning of the source text, without distortion, while taking into account the text itself (subject, type and use), its literary qualities and its social or historical context. “Transparency” is the extent to which a translation appears to a native speaker of the target language to have originally been written in that language, and conforms to its grammar, syntax and idiom. A “transparent” translation is often qualified as “idiomatic”.

In the 18th century

According to Johann Gottfried Herder, a German philosopher, theologian, poet and translator, a translator should translate toward (and not from) his own language, a statement already expressed two centuries earlier by Martin Luther, who was the first European scholar to assess that one translates satisfactorily only toward his own language.

But there was still not much concern for accuracy. “Throughout the 18th century, the watchword of translators was ease of reading. Whatever they did not understand in a text, or thought might bore readers, they omitted. They cheerfully assumed that their own style of expression was the best, and that texts should be made to conform to it in translation. Even for scholarship, except for the translation of the Bible, they cared no more than had their predecessors, and did not shrink from making translations from languages they hardly knew.” (Wikipedia)

It was also assessed that no dictionary or thesaurus could ever be a fully adequate guide in translating. In his “Essay on the Principles of Translation” (1791), the Scottish historian Alexander Tytler emphasized that assiduous reading is a more comprehensive guide to a language than are dictionaries. The Polish poet and grammarian Onufry Andrzej Kopczyński made the same point a few years earlier, in 1783, while adding the listening to the spoken language to the assiduous reading.

The Polish encyclopedist Ignacy Krasicki described the translator’s special role in society in his posthumous 1803 essay “O tłumaczeniu ksiąg” (On Translating Books). Ignacy Krasicki was the author of the first Polish novel, a poet and fabulist often named Poland’s La Fontaine, and a translator from French and Greek into Polish. In his essay, he wrote that “translation… is in fact an art both estimable and very difficult, and therefore is not the labor and portion of common minds; [it] should be [practiced] by those who are themselves capable of being actors, when they see greater use in translating the works of others than in their own works, and hold higher than their own glory the service that they render their country”.

In the 19th century

The 19th century brought new standards for accuracy and style. In regard to accuracy, as observed by J.M. Cohen, the author of the “Translation” entry in “Encyclopedia Americana” (1986, vol. 27), the policy became “the text, the whole text, and nothing but the text”, except for any bawdy passages, with the addition of extensive explanatory footnotes. In regard to style, the Victorians’ aim, achieved through far-reaching metaphrase or pseudo-metaphrase, was to constantly remind readers that they were reading a foreign classic.

An exception was the outstanding translation of Persian poems by the English writer and poet Edward FitzGerald, under the name “The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyám” (1859), with a selection of the one thousand poems written by Omar Khayyám (1048-1131), a Persian poet, mathematician and astronomer. The translation actually drew little of its material from the Persian original, but has stayed the first and most famous translation of Omar Khayyám’s poems to this day, despite more recent and accurate translations.

A new pattern was pioneered in 1871 by Benjamin Jowett, an English theologian who translated Plato into clear, straightforward language. But Jowett’s example was not followed until well into the 20th century, when accuracy rather than style became the main criterion.

The “non-transparent” translation theory was first developed by German theologian and philosopher Friedrich Schleiermacher during German Romanticism, before becoming a major theory two centuries later. In his seminal lecture “On the Different Methods of Translating” (1813), Schleiermacher distinguished between translation methods that move “the writer toward [the reader]”, i.e. transparency, and those that move “the reader toward [the author], i.e. an extreme fidelity to the foreignness of the source text. Schleiermacher favored the latter approach. He was motivated, however, not so much by a desire to embrace foreignness as by a nationalist desire to oppose France’s cultural domination and to promote German literature. His distinction between “domestication” (bringing the author to the reader) and “foreignization” (taking the reader to the author) inspired prominent theorists in the 20th century, for example Antoine Berman and Lawrence Venuti.

Yan Fu, a Chinese scholar and translator, developed in 1898 his three-facet theory of translation: faithfulness, i.e. be true to the original in spirit; expressiveness, i.e. be accessible to the target reader; and elegance, i.e. be in the language the target reader accepts as being educated. Yan Fu’s theory of translation was based on his experience with translating works of social sciences from English into Chinese. Of the three facets, he considered the second as the most important. If the meaning of the translated text is not accessible to the reader, there is no difference between having translated the text and not having translated the text at all. According to Yan Fu, in order to facilitate comprehension, word order should be changed, Chinese examples may replace English ones, and even people’s names should be rendered Chinese. His theory had much impact worldwide, but was also sometimes wrongly extended to the translation of literary works.

In the 20th century

Aniela Zagórska, a Polish translator, rendered into Polish nearly all the works of Joseph Conrad, a famous Polish-British novelist writing in English. In Conrad’s view, translation, like other arts, inescapably involved choice, and choice implied interpretation. Conrad would later advise Aniela Zagórska (who also was his niece): “Don’t trouble to be too scrupulous… I may tell you that in my opinion it is better to interpret than to translate… It is, then, a question of finding the equivalent expressions. And there, my dear, I beg you to let yourself be guided more by your temperament than by a strict conscience” (cited in Zdzisław Najder, “Joseph Conrad: A Life”, 2007).

The Argentine short-story writer, essayist and poet Jorge Luis Borges, a key figure in Spanish-language literature, was also a notable translator of literary works from English, French, German, Old English and Old Norse into Spanish. He translated – while simultaneously subtly transforming – the works of William Faulkner, André Gide, Hermann Hesse, Franz Kafka, Rudyard Kipling, Edgar Allan Poe, Walt Whitman, Virginia Woolf and others. Borges also wrote and lectured extensively on the art of translation, holding that a translation may improve upon the original, may even be unfaithful to it, and that alternative and potentially contradictory renderings of the same work can be equally valid.

Other translators still consciously produced literal translations, for example translators of religious, historic, academic and scientific texts, who often adhered as closely as possible to the source text, sometimes stretching the limits of the target language to produce an unidiomatic text.

Building up on German scholar Friedrich Schleiermacher’s theory in the 18th century, Antoine Berman and Lawrence Venuti became prominent advocates of “non-transparent” translation theories. Antoine Berman, a French translator, philosopher, historian and theorist of translation, identified twelve deforming tendencies inherent in most prose translations: rationalization, clarification, expansion, ennoblement, qualitative impoverishment, quantitative impoverishment, destruction of rhythms, destruction of underlying networks of signification, destruction of linguistic patternings, destruction of vernacular network or their exoticization, destruction of expressions and idioms, and effacement of the superimposition of languages. Lawrence Venuti, an American translation theorist, used Berman’s concepts to write a genealogy of translation in an Anglo-American context, and to introduce the “foreignizing” strategy that is normatively suppressed in mainstream translation.

The second half of the 20th century saw the birth of a new discipline called “Translation Studies” as well as the creation of new institutes specializing in teaching it. The term “Translation Studies” was coined by James S. Holmes, a poet and translator of poetry, in his seminal paper “The Name and Nature of Translation Studies” (1972), regarded as the foundational statement for this new discipline. Born in the United States, Holmes moved permanently to Amsterdam, Netherlands, as a young man. While writing his own poetry, he translated many works from Dutch and Belgian poets into English. He was hired as an associate professor in the new Institute of Interpreters and Translators (later renamed Institute of Translation Studies) created in 1964 at the University of Amsterdam, and wrote several major articles about translation.

From Antiquity to the mid-20th century, interpreting was seen as a specialized form of translation – spoken translation instead of written translation – before becoming a separate discipline. Interpreting Studies emancipated gradually from Translation Studies to concentrate on the practical and pedagogical aspect of interpreting, and to develop a different interdisciplinary theoretical framework, including sociological studies of interpreters and their working conditions – while such studies are still sorely lacking for translators to this day.

In the 21st century

Like their ancestors, contemporary translators have substantially helped to shape the languages into which they have translated. When a target language has lacked terms that are found in a source language, they have borrowed those terms, thereby enriching the target language. Spill-overs of source-language idiom and usage into the target-language translation have imported useful source-language calques (words or phrases borrowed from another language by literal translation) and loanwords (words adopted from one language and incorporated into another language without translation) that have enriched the target languages.

In “The Translator’s Invisibility: A History of Translation” (2nd ed. 2008), Lawrence Venuti asserts the historial power of translators. He explains that translations have forced massive shifts in the Western literary canon and led to evolutions in literature and academic theory over time, and to influencing the vision that societies have of foreign cultures. He therefore argues for a paradigm shift in the way translators consider their role, calling for them to curb the traditional domestication of translations and allow foreign influences to infiltrate translated texts. His book has been a source of much debate among translation experts, while becoming part of the Translation Studies canon.

Translation Studies is now defined as an academic interdiscipline that includes many fields of study (comparative literature, computer science, history, linguistics, philology, philosophy, semiotics, terminology), with the need for translators to choose a specialty (legal, economic, technical, scientific, literary) in order to be trained accordingly.

The internet has fostered a worldwide market for translation services, for language localization and for translation software. It has also brought many issues for translators, with lower fees, precarious employment and scarce and little paid freelance work, and with the rise of unpaid volunteer translation (including crowdsourced translation) promoted by major organizations that have the necessary funds to hire many professionals… but no professional translators.

Bilingual people need more skills than two languages to become good translators. To be a translator is a profession, and also implies a thorough knowledge of a given discipline. While this was obvious in the Middle Ages and the following centuries, this seems less obvious now. After being regarded as scholars alongside authors and professors for two millennia, many translators have become “invisible” in the 21st century, with their names forgotten on press releases and book covers, and sometimes even on the articles and books they spent days, weeks or months to translate.

Despite the omnipresent MT (machine translation) and CAT (computer-assisted translation) tools that are supposed to speed up the translation process, some translators still want to be compared to artists… and not only for the precarious life they have. According to Christopher Kasparek in “The Translator’s Endless Toil” (1983), the literary translator’s role in relation to a text is to interpret a work of art, like a musician or an actor would do. Some non-literary translators also want to be compared as “artists” when translating academic works and other works, for the craft, knowledge, dedication and passion they put into their own work.

[Many translators, authors and scholars were interviewed in: “Books and articles across borders and languages” (1990-2015), also available in French and Spanish.]


[1772] Ignacy Krasicki. “O przekładaniu ksiąg” (On the Translation of Books). In the newspaper “Monitor”, no. 1.

[1791] Alexander Tytler. “Essay on the Principles of Translation”. London.

[1803] Ignacy Krasicki. “O tłumaczeniu ksiąg” (On Translating Books). In “Dzieła wierszem i prozą” (Works in Verse and Prose).

[1813] Friedrich Schleiermacher. “Über die verschiedenen Methoden des Übersetzens” (“On the Different Methods of Translating”). Lecture.

[1959] Roman Jakobston. “On Linguistic Aspects of Translation”. Essay.

[1969] Eugene A. Nida & Charles R. Taber. “The Theory and Practice of Translation, with Special Reference to Bible Translating”. Brill, Leiden.

[1972] James S. Holmes. “The Name and Nature of Translation Studies”. In “Translated! Papers on Literary Translation and Translation Studies”. Rodopi, Amsterdam, 1972-88.

[1979] Louis G. Kelly. “The True Interpreter. A History of Translation Theory and Practice in the West”. St. Martin’s Press, New York.

[1983] Christopher Kasparek. “The Translator’s Endless Toil”. In “The Polish Review”, vol. XXVIII, no. 2.

[1986] J.M. Cohen. “Translation”. In “Encyclopedia Americana”. Grolier, New York, vol. 27.

[1990] Amparo Hurtado Albir. “La notion de fidélité en traduction” (The Idea of Faithfulness in Translation). Didier Érudition, Paris.

[2003] Umberto Eco. “Mouse or Rat? Translation as Negotiation”. Phoenix, London.

[2008] Lawrence Venuti. “The Translator’s Invisibility: A History of Translation” (2nd edition, first edition 1995). Routledge, London.

[2009] Mona Baker & Gabriela Saldanha. “Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies” (2nd edition). Routledge, London.

[2012] Jean Delisle & Judith Woodsworth. “Translators through History”. John Benjamins, Amsterdam.

[2016] Claudio Galderisi & Jean-Jacques Vincensini. “La fabrique de la traduction” (The Translation Making). Brepols Publishers, Turnhout, Belgium.

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2016/11/02 at 05:15

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