Lavengro; the Scholar, the Gypsy, the Priest eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 669 pages of information about Lavengro; the Scholar, the Gypsy, the Priest.

But at last I had seen enough of what London had to show, whether strange or commonplace, so at least I thought, and I ceased to accompany my friend in his rambles about town, and to partake of his adventures.  Our friendship, however, still continued unabated, though I saw, in consequence, less of him.  I reflected that time was passing on—­that the little money I had brought to town was fast consuming, and that I had nothing to depend upon but my own exertions for a fresh supply; and I returned with redoubled application to my pursuits.

CHAPTER XXXVI

Occupations—­Traduttore traditore—­Ode to the Mist—­Apple and pear—­Reviewing—­Current literature—­Oxford-like manner—­A plain story—­Ill-regulated mind—­Unsnuffed candle—­Strange dreams.

I compiled the Chronicles of Newgate; I reviewed books for the Review established on an entirely new principle; and I occasionally tried my best to translate into German portions of the publisher’s philosophy.  In this last task I experienced more than one difficulty.  I was a tolerable German scholar, it is true, and I had long been able to translate from German into English with considerable facility; but to translate from a foreign language into your own is a widely different thing from translating from your own into a foreign language; and, in my first attempt to render the publisher into German, I was conscious of making miserable failures, from pure ignorance of German grammar; however, by the assistance of grammars and dictionaries, and by extreme perseverance, I at length overcame all the difficulties connected with the German language.  But, alas! another difficulty remained, far greater than any connected with German—­a difficulty connected with the language of the publisher—­the language which the great man employed in his writings was very hard to understand; I say in his writings—­for his colloquial English was plain enough.  Though not professing to be a scholar, he was much addicted, when writing, to the use of Greek and Latin terms, not as other people used them, but in a manner of his own, which set the authority of dictionaries at defiance; the consequence was that I was sometimes utterly at a loss to understand the meaning of the publisher.  Many a quarter of an hour did I pass at this period, staring at periods of the publisher, and wondering what he could mean, but in vain, till at last, with a shake of the head, I would snatch up the pen, and render the publisher literally into German.  Sometimes I was almost tempted to substitute something of my own for what the publisher had written, but my conscience interposed; the awful words, Traduttore traditore, commenced ringing in my ears, and I asked myself whether I should be acting honourably towards the publisher, who had committed to me the delicate task of translating him into German; should I be acting honourably towards him, in making him speak in German

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Lavengro; the Scholar, the Gypsy, the Priest from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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