Tá Biolbó Baigín ag teacht!
Irish language speakers will be able to read J.R.R. Tolkien's classic The Hobbit or There and Back Again in their native language for the first time.
The Irish language version of An Hobad, nó Anonn agus Ar Ais Arís will be launched in An Siopa Leabhar this coming Monday. The translators are Alan Titley and Nicholas Williams (who has received high praise from Irish speakers for his recent translations of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There). Both will be signing copies of the book at the launch next week.
The Hobbit has already been translated into over 50 languages. A skilled linguist, Tolkien learned over a dozen languages in his own lifetime and invented many more in his fiction. Despite this love for language, recent published letters reveal that the author had a strong dislike for Irish, which he referred to as a "mushy language"! In a letter dated October 1958, he wrote to Deborah Webster:
I go frequently to Ireland (Éire: southern Ireland) being fond of it and (most of) its people; but the Irish language I find wholly unattractive.
I'm sure the Gaelgóirí, who can now read Tolkien's classic in their native tongue, will find nothing unattractive in Tolkien's wonderful tale. An Hobad is published by Evertype, Westport, County Mayo. The translation will contain Tolkien's original illustrations.
Go n-éirí an t-ádh leis!
|Original Illustration by Tolkien: Smaug Flies Around the Lonely Mountain|