Weird Hamlet — retranslated from the French

Back when I was researching Hamlet for something I would later write up in Hypnotized by Hamlet, I came across reference to a French translation.

The translation of Shakespeare’s play was written by Dumas — yes, the same one who wrote Count of Monte Christo and Three Musketeers.  Since Count is a classic revenge story, I figured it would be worth a read.

But I couldn’t find it in English.  Even the miracle of inter-library loan couldn’t help me.  Finally, I had the good fortune to cross e-paths with Frank Morlock, who at that time had a nearly-completed translation.  He has since put the completed Hamlet, by Alexandre Dumas online.

If you’re curious, the Conrad he mentions is indeed me:  I nagged him to complete the project.  I was surprised to see the mention.  It was a selfish nag.

Dumas’s Hamlet is interesting in comparison to Shakespeare’s and Bellefrost’s, because both Dumas and Bellefrost wrote comparatively normal stories, whereas Shakespeare’s is pretty weird.  If you’re interested in identifying those weirdnesses, one tip is to compare with a non-weird text.

…as you can see, I don’t much go for proper academic terminology.

(I kind of want to read the Klingon Hamlet, but not badly enough to learn Klingon.  I admit I did have a copy briefly, but not knowing the language…

(If only some Klingon bilingual would take a tip from Mr. Morlock and translate the Klingon Hamlet in English!)

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Published in: on May 12, 2012 at 2:44 pm  Leave a Comment  
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