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Song of Roland

There are a fair many editions and translations of the Chanson de Roland out there. Which do you prefer over the others? I'm looking for both an edition and a translation. They don't need to be in the same volume.


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Sep. 20th, 2005 03:55 pm (UTC)
You're ahead of me. I haven't read it at all, not in its entirety. Happily, there are many versions of it available online, if you're interested.

I'm interested in knowing which are the academically-respectable versions of it at the moment.
Sep. 20th, 2005 04:08 pm (UTC)
heh - I deleted my post because I realised I'd misread your request as for Childe Roland with my fangirl onetrack mind. I was hoping I could delete it before you noticed.
Sep. 20th, 2005 04:41 pm (UTC)
Does it make you feel better to know I haven't read Childe Roland either? There is so much I want to read when my dissertation is entirely finished.
Sep. 20th, 2005 03:52 pm (UTC)
When I took Old French and we did Roland, we used this edition. I trust the professor's choice here.

And for a translation, I have the Dorothy Sayers version. I don't know if it's the best, but it reads well. She's an accomplished mystery writer and she translates medieval literature! She's translated Dante as well.
Sep. 20th, 2005 04:12 pm (UTC)
Sayers's version is good, and W.S. Merwin's is interesting, mostly because he chose to do it in blocks of prose. I tend to swear by the 1970something Oxford edition, though -- it's two volumes, and I forget the translator. It's a guy. I liked his the best, though.
Sep. 20th, 2005 05:25 pm (UTC)
I've used Burgess (also Penguin) pretty much since it became available (I teach Roland at least a couple of times a year -- three this year). The translation is more accessible than Sayers' and much less stilted. I've always had problems with her using "paynims" (WTF?) for "pagans", etc. (Apologies to those who love her translation)

Also the Burgess version has a good introduction and enough of the poem in OF that even my freshmen students with some modern French are able to go back and forth between English and OF and see some of the language shifts.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )