Monday, 20 February 2012

Iggy Proust

"We must lay aside all hope of going home to sleep in our own bed, once we have made up our mind to penetrate into the pestiferous cavern through which we may have access to the mystery, into one of those vast glass roofed sheds, like that of Saint-Lazare into which I must go to find the train for Balbec, and which extended over the rent bowels of the city one of those bleak and boundless skies, heavy with an accumulation of dramatic menaces, like certain skies painted with an almost Parisian modernity by Mantegna or Veronese, beneath which could be accomplished only some solemn and tremendous act, such as departure by train or the Elevation of the Cross."

From Within a Budding Grove by Marcel Proust, rendered into English by C Scott Moncrieff.

As an addendum to the last post. I don't think I need to point out the subtext here.


  1. Isn't that translation of Proust now deemed a little flawed and superseded by a more modern recent translation by Lydia Davis? but in any event all translations are a bit like eating chips (French fries) with gloves on !

    1. I guess that Moncrieff is no longer the 'accepted' translations but there do still seem to be supporters for his 'flaws'. the sense that it's a 'translation' rarely pokes it's head through the prose, although there are moments. Maybe in a few years I can take on the new translation. (Maybe in more than a few years!)