The Translations of Seamus Heaney

The Translations of Seamus Heaney

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The complete translations of the poet Seamus Heaney, a Nobel laureate and prolific, revolutionary translator.

Seamus Heaney’s translation of Beowulf, published in 1999, was immediately hailed as an undisputed masterpiece, “something imperishable and great” (James Wood, The Guardian). A few years after his death in 2013, his translation of Virgil’s Aeneid Book VI caused a similar stir, providing “a remarkable and fitting epilogue to one of the great poetic careers of recent times” (Nick Laird, Harper’s Magazine). Now, for the first time, the poet, critic, and essayist’s translations are gathered in one volume.

Heaney translated not only classic works of Latin and Old English but also a great number of poems from Spanish, Romanian, Dutch, Russian, German, Scottish Gaelic, Czech, Ancient and Modern Greek, Middle and Modern French, and Medieval and Modern Italian, among other languages. In particular, the Nobel laureate engaged with works in Old, Middle, and Modern Irish, the languages of his homeland and early education. As he said, “If you lived in the Irish countryside as I did in my childhood, you lived in a primal Gaeltacht.”

In The Translations of Seamus Heaney, Marco Sonzogni has collected Heaney’s translations and framed them with the poet’s own writings on his works and their composition, sourced from introductions, interviews, and commentaries. Through this volume, we come closer to grasping the true extent of Heaney’s extraordinary abilities and his genius.

ISBN: 9780374277734

Published Date: March 21, 2023

Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux

Language: English

Page Count: 687

Size: 9.30" l x 6.30" w x 1.76" h