Latin into Scots : the principles and practice of Gavin Douglas in his translation of the 'Aeneid' of Virgil
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The Introduction takes the form of an account of Douglas's aims and methods in translation as stated by himself. One of the predominant features of the Eneados is the amount of expansion, so this subject is introduced in the first chapter, necessarily briefly, because it is a topic which recurs in association with other features throughout the poem and has to be returned to more than once. Another predominant feature is the large number of inaccuracies in Douglas's translation. As surprisingly little attention has been paid to this matter, several chapters have been devoted to the various forms which it takes. The aim of this first part of the thesis is to provide material to disprove the claim that Douglas was an accurate translator, a claim still frequently made. In order that the negative aspects of Douglas's work should not monopolise the study, a number of parallel passages are discussed, where Douglas's version is set out along with that of one of five other poets, spanning the period from the 16th century to the present day, the aim being to draw attention to Douglas's positive poetic skills. Three appendices are added, the last of which takes the form of a collation of the 1501 (Paris) edition of Virgil's Aeneid, which Douglas principally used, with the Oxford Classical Text (1969) This has been included to disprove another statement, to the effect that his apparent inaccuracies disappear when related to the 1501 text. The variations between the two texts, although numerous, are mainly insignificant, and only a very few of Douglas's inaccuracies are to be explained in this way.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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