Article

‘Ghosts of Metrical Procedures’: Translations From the Irish

Aodán Mac Póilin

in The Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish Poetry

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199561247
Published online January 2013 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199561247.013.0020

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

‘Ghosts of Metrical Procedures’: Translations From the Irish

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The Anglo-Irish literary renaissance and the early stages of the Gaelic revival were linked by translations from the Irish language, and had been stimulated in part by a rediscovery of the Gaelic literary heritage. The distinction between the two movements was briefly blurred by Douglas Hyde's bilingual collection, Abhráin Grádh Chúige Chonnacht (Love Songs of Connacht). Published in 1893, Love Songs provided both metrical and prose translations. In the prose versions and commentary, Hyde used an intensified, almost over-literal version of Hiberno-English. W. B. Yeats saw in Hyde's experiments with Hiberno-English prose the coming of a new power into literature. Two other significant books of translations were published in the 1890s, one by Standish Hayes O'Grady and another by George Sigerson. This chapter, which discusses English translations of Irish poetry, first examines the nature and range of Gaelic poetry, and then turns to the ethics of translation.

Keywords: Irish poetry; translations; Irish language; Douglas Hyde; W. B. Yeats; Hiberno-English prose; Hayes O'Grady; George Sigerson; Gaelic poetry; ethics of translation

Article.  8025 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (20th Century onwards) ; Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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