I once asked a former Oxford classics don which verse translation of Homer he thought was best. He shrugged before saying, ‘Read Homer in Greek, or else in prose.’ On the face of it, this looks like a way of saying that Homer’s poetry is impossible to capture in English. But there’s another lesson to take from the remark. In the introduction to his new translation of The Odyssey, Peter Green is admirably clear about it. There has long been disagreement between what he calls ‘Hellenizing translators’ and ‘modernist’ ones. ‘Modernist’ translators want to imagine how ancient poets would write if they were alive now and writing in English; ‘Hellenizing’ ones want to capture the remoteness of the original.
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'Unlike much that was extracted from India, these paintings were not plunder, and those who created them were properly remunerated and often received due credit.'
@PParkerWriting on 'Forgotten Masters: Indian Painting for the East India Company'.
‘"I feel", Lowell told Hardwick ... "as if I were pulled apart and thinning into mist, or rather being torn apart and still preferring that state to making a decision."'
Richard Davenport-Hines on the letters of Robert Lowell and Elizabeth Hardwick.
'To me, Elmore Leonard is as comforting in extremity as Pym, and as safe, in the last resort, as Wodehouse. The guys with the best lines are going to come out the other side; the dumb fucks are going to get it in the head or chest.'