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Dear Friends,

I thought I'd mention that Anny Ballardini wrote me and said:  "I mentioned you and your impressive work at a reading I had at the Diocesan Museum in Trient about a week ago on the occasion of an evening dedicated to Vittoria Colonna and women's poetry." She also invited me to contribute to a special issue of a online beautiful magazine of contemporary poetry, translations and reviews she will be editing:  Ekleksographia (http://ekleksographia.ahadadabooks.com/) .  Topics will include translations of poetry; reviews of translations; drama related to the act of trans/lating;  art work dedicated to the topic. As I have no new work and do not plan to translate poetry ever again, I have nothing for her, but I am so grateful to her for thinking of me. 

She actually put a biography of me on her site.  It includes links to my complete translations of the poetry of Vittoria Colonna and Veronica Gambara, the book-length biography I planned for Vittoria Colonna:

This is an image of a Madonna of Charity found in a church in Ischia; it is meant as an idealized portrait of Colonna. She liked to present heself as bountiful strong mother figure.

Anny also include a link to the portrait biography I of Veronica Gambara (which another biographer of her commended to me in a letter sent me by her son):

This is one of three illustrations in the 1759 edition of Gambara's poetry.  She liked to present herself as a widow after her husband's death; it protected her.

Her kind remembrance and invitation have cheered my spirits considerably tonight.

I have been reading Austen in French; I've read two different contemporary French translations of Sense and Sensibility (one for the Pleiade, Joubert, and the other for Christian Bourgeois) and Isabelle de Montolieu's (at long last in print and inexpensively), and last night began a comparison of Pride and Prejudice.  I've found an article on the history of French translation and could probably cobble together a brief article.



Jul. 31st, 2009 02:26 pm (UTC)
First love of Colonna was in French and by another woman, a French scholar
Sudden memory:

I sometimes prefer some of the French translations of Colonna to the Italian originals. I really felt fell in love with Colonna's poetry in a series of French translations by a woman named Suzanne Therault whose book on Colonna I came across in the Library of Congress, Suzanne Thérault. Un Cénacle humaniste de la Renaissance autour de Vittoria Colonna : Châtelaine d'Ischia (Reliure inconnue)
535 pages, Editeur : M. Didier (1968) It's massive and she didn't finish it by the time of her death; it's actually very disorganized and much of the stuff in the notes should be in the direct text. She imagined Colonna spent years on the island of Ischia with her husband's aunt and a bunch of poets (Neapolitan mostly). There is no proof of this at all.

I've never told anyone that before, partly because I don't
usually admit it frankly to myself.

I rememember this because I couldn't remember the name of the 1890s translator of a series of Colonna's sonnets: Lefevre-Deumier, like Fenelong, a man about Paris (town) in the era. He
did spectacularly beautiful and deeply felt translations into the French.

Translation is a mysterious underrated art, much underrated.


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