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Recommended translations?

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message 1: by Erin (new) - added it

Erin W Does anybody have a particular favorite of the many translations? I'm reading the David R. Slavitt version (Johns Hopkins UP 1994) and although I'm finding it really flowing and readable, there are some very weird turns of phrase. (About Minerva he writes "to fix that hussy's wagon, the goddess went down into the cave of Envy..." When Jove rapes Calliope he "[cops] an abrupt and unambiguous feel.") I'm finding it distractingly anachronistic.

Any thoughts on a more conventional translation?


message 2: by Reid (new) - added it

Reid Yeah, from what I've read of my copy, I'd recommend it; it's beautiful in parts - it's a Mentor edition translated by Horace Gregory. I'll quote from what I think is your first passage: "She knew the girl had disobeyed her orders, That she with unclean hands unlocked the secret Of Lemnian's son, the child born motherless. It seemed the girl would have her crooked away With Mercury, friendship with him and bribes To make her rich, a sister's gratitude. At once Minerva went to Envy's cave, A hovel, dark with blood, in a deep valley, Hidden where no sun ventures, no wind stirs, And night air falling with continual cold;..."


message 3: by Erin (new) - added it

Erin W Yeah, I think that clinches it. I'm switching editions. Thanks, Reid.

There will be no more fixing of hussy's wagons.


message 4: by Bryn (new)

Bryn Hammond I do Elizabethan Ovid - the original and inimitable Arthur Golding - for 'its racy verve, its quirks and oddities, its rugged English gusto' (quote Nims). Like the other Elizabethan translators, it is just so... real, alive, graphic. Since I tried them, I can't stand the moderns, that seem dull, uncreative - distant. As if the Elizabethans believed. Of course, what you get is the interaction of Shakespeare's era with the Greek or Latin - if you're into that. Works as a double bill for me.


Iain Coggins Allen Mandelbaum's translation is particularly lovely!


Old-Barbarossa Recently read the Penguin edition trans by David Raeburn. Enjoyed it, good notes too.
Can't comment on how accurate it is as a trans as I have no dead languages to help me judge.


Betsy Mine is by Rolf Humphries, 1954, University Press. The same passage in mine is as follows:

Minerva could not bear it! In her anger
She came to Envy's house, a black abode,
Ill-kept, stained with dark gore, a hidden home
In a deep valley, where no sunshine comes,
Where no wind blows, gloomy, and full of cold,
Where no bright fire burns ever, where the smoke
Is the gray fog of everlasting mist.



Patrice I liked Humphries too. I just re read it. I still had the copy I used in college 40 plus years ago. It's much more beautiful and meaningful the second time around.


Seth Kanor My personal favorite is the Ted Hugh's version. Unfortunately, he only did twenty-four passages, but it is well worth seeking out. It's called, "Tales from Ovid."


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