- Series: Anvil Editions
- Paperback: 472 pages
- Publisher: Carcanet Press Ltd.; Bilingual, Reprint edition (March 1, 2012)
- Language: English, French
- ISBN-10: 0856464279
- ISBN-13: 978-0856464270
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #234,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Charles Baudelaire: The Complete Verse (Anvil Editions) (English and French Edition) Bilingual, Reprint Edition
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'More than any other translator I find that Francis Scarfe sheds light on the poetry of Baudelaire with his meticulous and imaginative renderings' - Sean O'Brien 'Scarfe's translations should remain the classic point de repere' - Stephen Romer, Times Literary Supplement
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Some comparisons with other editions of Les Fleurs du mal: Howard's translations are not on the same or facing page. McGowan's translations are in verse, and sometimes favor rhythm over accuracy. Certainly word order can change. Some examples:
"La sottise, l'erreur, le peche, la lésine" McGowan: Folly and error, stinginess and sin. Scarfe: Stupidity, error, sin and meanness.
"baise et mange" McGowan: suck and kiss, Scarfe: kisses and nibbles
"Si le viol, le poison, le poignard, l'incendie" McGowan: If slaughter, or if arson, poison, rape. . . Scarfe: If rape and poison, dagger and arson
Epouvante is translated by McGowan as daunted, Scarfe as horrified.
Scarfe is more literal. McGowan translates "crispe ses poings" as rages, Scarfe says "clenches her fists."
I think if you are trying to read it in French, with a ready English reference, the Scarfe is preferable, and if you want a poetic, less literal, but more flowing English translation the McGowan would be a good choice.
quite accurate, are shown below the originals on each page. I liked this layout,
which makes it clear that the beautiful imagery work best in the original French.