I challenge you, M5K, to select your favorite bits from all the translations to create an all-star mashup of the first graph.Now, I don't know if he was tweaking me for the way I reviewed Gilgamesh, but it hardly matters. I'm helpless before a good challenge.
The Famous Opening Sentence
Version 1. In this one, I do exactly what The Advisor said: I cut and paste from the translations I originally listed to get what I think is an accurate and sensitive version of this famous and much-footnoted sentence, as well as a reasonably elegant one:
Somewhere in La Mancha, in a village whose name I don't care to remember, there lived not long ago one of those gentlemen who keeps a lance in a rack, an old shield, a skinny nag, and a greyhound for racing. His stew had more beef than lamb in it, and he ate hash most nights, lentils on Fridays, scraps on Saturdays, and perhaps a pigeon on Sundays -- these accounted for three-fourths of his income.Version 2: OK, that was fun, but it's hard to resist the lure of really interpreting Cervantes. So here's what the sentence feels like to me, written out like I imagine Cervantes might have done it if he were living today. And a West Coast American.
A while ago, in some village or other in La Mancha, there was one of those gentlemen farmers whose ideas, ideals, and household goods always seem to lag two or three generations behind the times. He had the obligatory antique lance in its antique lance-rack, and an ancestor's ancient shield hanging on the wall; he had a skinny old greyhound for racing, and an even skinnier horse for riding. He ate lamb when he could get it, but usually settled for beef. On Friday he fasted on lentils, and on Saturday he fasted on leftovers, but on Sundays he feasted, sometimes allowing himself a pigeon as a special treat. Three-fourths of his income went to buy food.The Obscure Random Sentence
Version 1: Same deal: the cut-and-paste job.
Just then, one of the lads who brought the goatherds their provisions arrived from the village. “Do you know what is happening down there?” he asked.Version 2: Trying to make it feel right.
About then, one of the village boys the goatherds paid to haul up their supplies arrived. "Do you know what's going on down there?" he asked.So there you are, Advisor. There's your long-distance dedication. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to make a fool out of myself by suggesting I have some kind of special access to Don Quixote, and can write.