Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I Just Have to Share This With Someone

It's a review, by Pierre-Olivier Leroy, on the Bryn Mawr Classical Review website, of volume 10, the index, of a Greek-German bilingual edition, by Stefan Radt, of Strabo's Geography.

That's right, it's a review of just the index. The index of an edition of the work on geography by the 1st-century AD Greek scholar Strabo, a multi-volume edition with the Greek text on the left and a German translation on the facing page. Dr Leroy's review is about 1000 words long, and it's in French. Leroy's conclusion is that the volume is indispensable.

Classical scholars will find nothing at all remarkable about a thousand-word-long rave review in French of the index to an edition of Strabo with facing-page German translation in an American online Classical studies journal. Maybe very few people in the world but me (an autodidact, not a bona fide scholar with academic bona fides) care about these sorts of things. If there's anyone reading this who's a lot like me, trust me, they're fascinated. This multi-lingualism is what has replaced the recent wider use of Latin I described in my recent post Change is Bad, and demonstrates why I wonder why people don't still use Latin the way they did a century ago. I mean, I like things like thousand-word-long rave reviews in French of the indices to editions of ancient Greek authors with facing-page German translations in American classical studies journals. I love things like that. You probably can't imagine how much I love such things, unless you happen to be rather eccentric in certain ways resembling Jorge Luis Borges or Umberto Eco. But although I am positively beaming, I really can't see how such a state of affairs is practical, compared to everybody writing everything in these journals in Latin. Change is bad.

I don't know, maybe there are a lot of you who are eccentric in such ways. Who, for instance, will smile with real wry pleasure when you learn that I learned today that Strabo's name is spelled the same way in German and in French. If there are I wish you would get in touch with me already, it's lonely out here in the cold all by myself.

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