Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [Lambengolmor] German Translations

Expand Messages
  • Hans Georg Lundahl
    ... In 1938 some German censors were asking Tolkien if he were _Arisch_ and Tolkien ridiculed the idea of asking it by _regretting_ to admit he had no Jewish
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 24, 2003
    • 0 Attachment
      David Kiltz <dkiltz@...> wrote:

      > *Shire*: As A.R. Smith notes, _Gau_ is indeed completely impossible in
      > modern German due to its association with Nazi rule. Moreover, _GAU_
      > means 'größter anzunehmender Unfall' ('maximum credible accident' or
      > 'worst case scenario') something that is evoked, too (and often is,
      > deliberately, alluded to in reference to Nazi-Germany).

      In 1938 some German censors were asking Tolkien if he were _Arisch_ and
      Tolkien ridiculed the idea of asking it by _regretting_ to admit he had no
      Jewish ancestry. Now German editors are asking whether a Tolkien
      translation is completely _entnazifiziert_ - now, the _Gau_ would have
      been right, not just because the identic historic meaning is _shire_, but
      also because the reason _the Shire_ was called so was the military
      organisation of Arthedain. Something which is _not_ quite
      _entnazifiziert_, or at least not quite _demilitariziert_.

      > In my eyes, _Das Ländle_ wouldn't have been too bad but that's
      > associated with Baden-Würtemberg in particular in Germany.

      Well, Baden-Würtemberg is rather though not quite flat (==not in Alps
      or Riesengebirge), as well as fertile and (like all Germany, excepting
      Ruhrgebiet) fairly rural ... so though a Bavarian association (considering
      what hobbits and Bavarians are like) would have been better, _das Ländle_
      or for that matter _'s Landerl_ would be beautiful - though it means
      something else than Shire.

      Would someone use my adress to inform me (who have not read VT)
      how _the Shire_ actually _was_ translated into German? Unless our
      moderator Ælfwine is gentle enough to put that into an editorial
      comment, of course!

      [Arden writes that "the Shire appears with the curious name _das
      Auenland_ (_passim_), which means something like ‘riverside land’
      or ‘meadow-land' (VT36:32). CFH]

      Hans Georg Lundahl

      Höstrusk och grå moln - köp en resa till solen på Yahoo! Resor

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • David Kiltz
      On Mittwoch, September 24, 2003, at 07:10 Uhr, Hans Georg Lundahl ... I don t think German editors are asking that *now*. Indeed, I don t think this has
      Message 2 of 4 , Sep 25, 2003
      • 0 Attachment
        On Mittwoch, September 24, 2003, at 07:10 Uhr, Hans Georg Lundahl
        wrote:

        >> *Shire*: As A.R. Smith notes, _Gau_ is indeed completely impossible
        >> in
        >> modern German due to its association with Nazi rule. Moreover, _GAU_
        >> means 'größter anzunehmender Unfall' ('maximum credible accident' or
        >> 'worst case scenario') something that is evoked, too (and often is,
        >> deliberately, alluded to in reference to Nazi-Germany).
        >
        > In 1938 some German censors were asking Tolkien if he were _Arisch_ and
        > Tolkien ridiculed the idea of asking it by _regretting_ to admit he
        > had no
        > Jewish ancestry. Now German editors are asking whether a Tolkien
        > translation is completely _entnazifiziert_ - now, the _Gau_ would have
        > been right, not just because the identic historic meaning is _shire_,
        > but
        > also because the reason _the Shire_ was called so was the military
        > organisation of Arthedain. Something which is _not_ quite
        > _entnazifiziert_, or at least not quite _demilitariziert_.

        I don't think German editors are asking that *now*. Indeed, I don't
        think this has anything to do with 'Entnazifizierung'. Entnazifizierung
        means to get rid of Nazi ideology and supporters. While it is true that
        misuse of language should and is being corrected (e.g. _arisch_
        'Aryans' is now correctly used for speakers of Indo-Iranian languages),
        the use of _Gau_ at that time is a historical and linguistic fact.
        Entnazifizierung cannot and indeed should not discount that fact or
        forget history (rather on the contrary!). The associations _Gau_ has
        are a reality and that is one reason why it can't be used.

        _Gau_ originally means 'landscape, region'. At least one etymology
        says it is a collective formation (with prefix *_ga-_ i.e. < *ga-awja_)
        from the same stem as _Aue_ (<*ahwjô, *awjô). They all refer to
        settlement near water (something in line with archaeological data). We
        see two things here:

        1) _Shire_ ('cut-out part of a territory') and _Gau_ aren't that close
        after all. It is true that G. _Gau_ is often used to translate Latin
        _pagus_ in reference to ancient Gaul. This is still the case. Other
        than that, though, the usage of _Gau_ as an administrative unit is
        typical only for the 3rd Reich, contrary to that of 'Shire'. Other than
        that, the word is used for landscapes (Landschaften) only, cf. _Das
        Allgäu_ (dialectal variant _Gäu_ for _Gau_).

        2) If we accept the above etymology (Ms Carroux certainly had)
        _Auenland_ is indeed (a) little more than a modernized way to say
        'Gau'.

        To sum up, the word Gau is still used when translating, e.g., Caesar
        or in reference to landscapes (its use before the WWII) but simply
        doesn't fit, for all the various reasons, to translate 'Shire'.

        Lastly, I might say, that _Auenland_ is not a bad choice at all because
        _Aue_ conveys an idea of tranquility and peace (at least to me). Once
        again it becomes apparent that Ms Carroux has, for the most part, done
        a very good job.

        David Kiltz

        P.S.: I've been told a newer German translation out now is
        catastrophic. I currently don't have the time (or indeed the wish) to
        undergo the ordeal of reading it.
      • Hans Georg Lundahl
        ... What about the Shires of the Carolingian Empire encompassing both France and Germany (contemporary to the Shires in KIng Alfred s England)? That would be a
        Message 3 of 4 , Sep 25, 2003
        • 0 Attachment
          David Kiltz <dkiltz@...> wrote:

          > We see two things here:
          >
          > 1) _Shire_ ('cut-out part of a territory') and _Gau_ aren't that close
          > after all. It is true that G. _Gau_ is often used to translate Latin
          > _pagus_ in reference to ancient Gaul. This is still the case. Other
          > than that, though, the usage of _Gau_ as an administrative unit is
          > typical only for the 3rd Reich, contrary to that of 'Shire'. Other than
          > that, the word is used for landscapes (Landschaften) only, cf. _Das
          > Allgäu_ (dialectal variant _Gäu_ for _Gau_).

          What about the Shires of the Carolingian Empire encompassing both
          France and Germany (contemporary to the Shires in KIng Alfred's
          England)? That would be a very close parallel to the Shire in
          Arthedain, as well as being the source for the Nazi use of _Gau_.

          > Lastly, I might say, that _Auenland_ is not a bad choice at all because
          > _Aue_ conveys an idea of tranquility and peace (at least to me). Once
          > again it becomes apparent that Ms Carroux has, for the most part, done
          > a very good job.

          The Shire was tranquil enough after the battle where Golfimbul was
          beheaded (by Bandobras Took?), but not when it got its name,
          which was a period of war with the Witchking Angmar.

          Hans Georg Lundahl

          Höstrusk och grå moln - köp en resa till solen på Yahoo! Resor


          [I have allowed this discussion on Lambengolmor because it grew out
          of a discussion that began in the pages of _Vinyar Tengwar_, and I
          want to encourage the use of this list as a forum for _VT_ readers to
          discuss its contents. However, I'm having second thoughts about this
          particular topic, as it is removed from issues of Tolkien's invented
          languages. It is unfortunately all too often the case that Internet
          discussion lists drift far off topic; and the only effective remedy for
          this has proven to be strict moderation to keep discussions on point.
          I am therefore going to draw this thread to a close, and formulate the
          policy that future discussion of Tolkien in translation on this list should
          focus on how the elements of Tolkien's invented languages are treated
          with in translation. That being said, I _strongly_ encourage someone
          to step forward to initiate and moderate a new discussion list devoted
          to the broader issues of translating Tolkien's works. CFH]
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.