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Rampolli by George MacDonald
page 2 of 162 (01%)


I think every man who can should help his people to inherit the earth by
bringing into his own of the wealth of other tongues. In the flower-pots
of translation I offer these few exotics, with no little labour taught to
exist, I hope to breathe, in English air. Such labour is to me no less
serious than delightful, for to do a man's work, in the process of
carrying over, more injury than must be, is a serious wrong.

I have endeavoured, first of all, to give the spirit of the poetry.

Next, I have sought to retain each individual meaning that goes to form
the matter of a poem.

Third, I have aimed at preserving the peculiar mode, the aroma of the
poet's style, so far as I could do it without offence to the translating

Fourth, both rhythm and rime being essential elements of every poem in
which they are used, I have sought to respect them rigorously.

Fifth, spirit, matter, and form truly represented, the more literal the
translation the more satisfactory will be the result.

After all, translation is but a continuous effort after the impossible.
There is in it a general difficulty whose root has a thousand
ramifications, the whole affair being but an accommodation of
difficulties, and a perfect translation from one language into another is
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