Jules Verne Forum



Re: Cetacean a mile wide and 3 miles long

From: wbutcher <wbutcher~at~netvigator.com>
Date: Wed, 12 Apr 2006 20:31:08 +0800
To: "'Jules Verne Forum'" <jvf~at~Gilead.org.il>

Unfortunately, there is no way "un mille" can be translated as anything to
do with thousand; and in French you can't omit "mille" (at least when it
means thousand). Trust me, Rick's translations accurately take in both the
literal meaning and the connotation and/or context.

1/F, 46A, Lung Mei Village, Taipo, Hong Kong

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-jvf~at~Gilead.org.il [mailto:owner-jvf~at~Gilead.org.il] On Behalf Of
Norm Wolcott
Sent: Wednesday, 12 April, 2006 8:11 PM
To: Jules Verne Forum
Subject: Re: Cetacean a mile wide and 3 miles long

Well, your translation says "a mile wide and three long" so the "three"
refers to the antecedent "miles". Likewise if we have "a thousand wide and
three long". we would have a length of three thousand, thousand being the
antecedent of "three". We need the advice of a grammar expert like Terry
Harpold. Of course the literal translation would be "a width of a (thousand,
mile) and a length of three"; so I am not certain what the antecedent is.
----- Original Message -----
From: <rick1walter~at~comcast.net>
To: <jvf~at~Gilead.org.il>
Sent: Tuesday, April 11, 2006 3:18 PM
Subject: Re: Cetacean a mile wide and 3 miles long

> Norm--
> You finish saying: <I come to the conclusion that Verne was talking "feet"
> not "miles" in the paragraph.>
> By this logic, your cetacean is a thousand feet wide and three feet long.
> Surely not.
> All the best,
> Rick Walter in Albuquerque.
> P.S.
> I'm glad to see you're acquainted with the Routledge. How about giving
> impossible Mercier a rest and putting Frith's text on line?
> RW
> Original Message:
> -----------------
> From: Norm Wolcott nwolcott2ster~at~gmail.com
> Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2006 14:28:19 -0400
> To: jvf~at~math.technion.ac.il
> Subject: Cetacean a mile wide and 3 miles long
> In the very first chapter of 20K we have the following paragraph.
> A prendre la moyenne des observations faites à diverses reprises -- en
> rejetant les évaluations timides qui assignaient à cet objet une
> longueur de deux cents pieds et en repoussant les opinions exagérées
> qui le disaient large d'un mille et long de trois -- on pouvait
> affirmer, cependant, que cet être phénoménal dépassait de beaucoup
> toutes les dimensions admises jusqu'à ce jour par les ichtyologistes --
> s'il existait toutefois.
> To obtain a neutral translation of this paragraph we use google (which
> one of the standard dictionaries ). The words in red I have altered for
> readability.
> To take the average of the observations made with various recoveries
> reprises -- by rejecting the timid evaluations which assigned to with this
> object a length of two hundred feet and by pushing moving back the
> exaggerated opinions which said it broad had a breadth of one thousand and
> length of three -- one could affirm, however, whom that this phenomenal
> being went far beyond all allowed dimensions allowed so far by the
> ichtyologists -- if there it existed however.
> Here we note a deficiency in the vocabulary, Babelfish only recognizes
> "mille" as thousand, not "mile" which is an unusual word in French. If we
> take a look now at the Mercier translation we find that he parallels the
> machine translation pretty well except for the size of the object (and the
> alteration of icthylologists, probably did not know what they were)
> Taking into consideration the mean of observations made at divers times --
> rejecting the timid estimate of those who assigned to this object a length
> of two hundred feet, equally with the exaggerated opinions which set it
> down as a mile in width and three in length--we might fairly conclude that
> this mysterious being surpassed greatly all dimensions admitted by the
> learned ones of the day, if it existed at all.
> If we look at Butcher's translation we find he uses miles instead of feet
> as well :
> Taking the average of the observations made at the various
> junctures-rejecting both the timid evaluations assigning the object a
> length of 200 feet and the exaggerated opinions making it three miles long
> by a mile wide-it could be affirmed that this phenomenal being greatly
> exceeded all the dimensions the ichthyologists had admitted until then-if
> indeed it existed at all.
> The Walter translation also uses miles:
> Striking an average of observations taken at different times--
> rejecting those timid estimates that gave the object a length
> of 200 feet, and ignoring those exaggerated views that saw it
> as a mile wide and three long--you could still assert that this
> phenomenal creature greatly exceeded the dimensions of anything
> then known to ichthyologists, if it existed at all.
> The Routledge and Ward Lock translations also use miles, so the consensus
> is universaly "miles".
> So now we have only the machine translation offering a thousand feet!
> Looking back at the original French and the other dimensioins mentioned in
> the chapter, I come to the conclusion that Verne was talking "feet" not
> "miles" in the paragraph. But I wonder if there are any other opinions on
> this matter. ??? could it be that Verne is playing a trick by offering two
> different interpretations by his use of words?
> nwolcott2~at~post.harvard.edu
> --------------------------------------------------------------------
> mail2web - Check your email from the web at
> http://mail2web.com/ .
Received on Wed 12 Apr 2006 - 15:31:34 IDT

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