Thursday, March 17, 2011

So Frenchy, So Chic!

Ahoy again folks!

I'm afraid I've not got any pretty pictures for you this time, just a whole lotta EDUTAINMENT.

(Or something.)

I have a confession. Despite my extreme curiosity in other cultures, I've never become any good at any of them. And there's a fair whack of Jane Eyre that features dialogue in French, and when I was reading it the first time, I was very frustrated by the fact that Charlotte Bronte didn't have the foresight to provide some translations... Humph.

So, thanks to my recently acquired AMAZEBALLS FRENCH SQUILLS (ie. I used Google Translate) I have translated all the French phrases and dialogue I've come across so far, so you too can enjoy Jane Eyre AND feel worldly, all at the same time.

DISCLAIMER: Scene above not actually in 'Jane Eyre'

There's still a fair chunk of book waiting to be read, but I'll update this post as I go, adding phrases as I find them!

You can thank me later...


Page 134-5 (Chapter 11)

'C'est la ma gouvernante?' - 'That's my nanny?'
'Mais oui, certainement.' - 'But yes, certainly.'


Page 137 (Chapter 11)


'La Ligue des Rats; fable de La Fontaine' - The League of the Rats; fable
'Qu'avez vous donc? lui dit un de ces rats; parlez!' - 'What have you been? said one of these rats, speak!'

Page 143 (Chapter 11)

'Mesdames, vous etes servies!' ... 'J'ai bien faim, moi!' - 'Ladies, you are served!' ... 'I am very hungry, me!'

Page 144 (Chapter 12)

par parenthese - parenthetically


Page 158 (Chapter 12)

'Et cela doit signifier,' ... 'qu'il y aura, la dedans un cadeau pour moi, et peut-etre pour vous aussi, mademoiselle. Monsieur a parle de vous: il m'a demande le nom de ma gouvernante et si elle n'etait pas une petite personne, assez mince et un peu pale. J'ai dit qu'oui: car c'est vrai, n'est-ce pas mademoiselle?' - 'And that must mean, that there will be a gift in there for me and maybe for you too, miss. Sir spoke of you: he asked me the name of my governess, and if it was not a small person, rather thin and somewhat pale. I said that yes, for it is true, is not it miss?'


Page 160 (Chapter 12)

'N'est-ce pas, monsieur, qu'il y a un cadeau pour Mademoiselle Eyre dans votre petit coffre?' - Is it not, sir, there is a gift for Miss Eyre in your little box?


Page 171 (Chapter 14)


'Ma boite!' - My box!

'...tien-toi tranquille, enfant; comprends-tu?' - Be quiet, child, do you understand?

'Oh ciel! Que c'est beau!' - Oh heaven! How beautiful!


Page 176 (Chapter 14)

et j'y tiens - and I want...


Page 183 (Chapter 14)

'Il faut que je l'essaie!' ... 'et a l'instant meme!' - I must try it! and has the same time! (Okay, so Google Translate may not be doing the best job on this one...)


Page 184 (Chapter 14)

'Est-ce que ma robe va bien?' ... 'et mes souliers? et mes bas? Tenez, je crois que je vais danser!' - Is my dress OK? ... and my shoes? and my socks? Look, I think I'll dance!

'Monsieur, je vous remercie mille fois de votre bonte;' ... 'C'est comme cela que maman faisait, n'est-ce pas, monsieur?' - Sir, thank you a thousand times for your kindness... That's how mom did, is not it, sir?

'comme cela' - like that


Page 186 (Chapter 15)

'Mon ange' - My angel...

porte cochere - gate


Page 208 (Volume II, Chapter 1)

'Qu'avez-vous, mademoiselle?' ... 'vos doigts tremblent comme la feuille, et vos joues sont rouges: mais, rouges comme des cerises!' - 'What did you, miss?' ... 'Your fingers tremble like a leaf, and your cheeks are red, but red like cherries!'

ignis-fatuus - a fool of fire (Whoa! That one was Latin!)
Edit: This one is also on page 321 (Vol II, Chapter 3).


Page 221 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'Elles changent de toilettes.' - They change a toilet. (Are you SURE, Google?) (Edit: As pointed out in this comment, it's more likely to refer to a change of clothes.)

'Chez maman... quand il y avait du monde, je les suivais partout, au salon et a leurs chambres; souvent je regardais les femmes de chambre coiffer et habiller les dames, et c'etait si amusant: comme cela on apprend' - Home mom ... when there were people, I followed them everywhere, and their living rooms, I often watched the maids hair and dressed the ladies, and it was so fun: as you learn.

'Mais oui, mademoiselle: voila cinq ou six heures que nous n'avons pas mange.' - But yes, miss: that's five or six hours that we do not eat.


Page 222 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'et alors quel dommage!' - and then what a shame!


Page 225 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'Est-ce que je ne puis pas prendre une seule de ces fleurs magnifiques, mademoiselle? Seulement pour completer ma toilette.' - Is what I can not take one of these beautiful flowers, miss? Just to complete my toilet. (Hmm, come on Google, you can do better than this!)


Page 226 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

minois chiffone - little face cloth


Page 229 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'pere noble de theatre' - Nope, seems Google's got nothing on that one. Anyone able to help?


Page 233 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'Tant pis!' - Too bad!


Page 237 (Vol II, Chapter 2)

'Gardez-vous en bien!' - Beware of it!


Page 249 (Vol II, Chapter 3)

'Voila Monsieur Rochester, qui revient!' - That is Mr. Rochester, who is coming back!


Page 323 (Vol II, Chapter 7)

'prete a croquer sa petite maman Anglaise' -
'ready to eat his mommy English' (Whoa Google! That be an interesting one...)


Page 354 (Vol II, Chapter 9)

pour me donner une contenance - give me a capacity


Page 436 (Vol III, Chapter 2)

'Da trat hervor Einer, anzusehen wie die Sternen Nacht... Ich wage die Gedanken in der Schale meines Zornes und die Werke mit dem Gewichte meines Grimms.' - Then there came forth one, looking like the starry night ... I venture the thought in the shell of my anger and works with the weight of my wrath.

(Yup, that one was in GERMAN.)


Page 492 (Vol III, Chapter 6)

Cui bone? - Which bone?

(Sorry Google, but I think you might be off with this one. My common sense tells me in the context it's more a 'Who, me?'
It is, however, not French but Italian, judging by Google's language detection.)


Page 576 (Vol III, Chapter 11)

"Jeune encore" - still young


EDIT: Post finished Friday 22nd April, 2011.

And that's all the ones I could find! If you have found any other quotes with which you have taken the liberty of using a slightly questionable translator software to convert to English, please send me a
tweet so we can add them to the list here! I've already had a few hits on this post from Google, from folks trying to get translations, so hopefully I've helped you out!

Also, this blog reaches one month of age on the 18th of this month. Yes, that is tomorrow. And I cannot tell you how humbled/awestruck/grateful/appreciative for having you join me on this journey. When I started this project, I would never in the WORLD have expected the number of hits this blog has had in such a short time, from all over the world. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. You are all magnificent people, and I love each and every one of you. Thank you for joining me on my journey, especially so early in the piece. My gratitude cannot be expressed in words. THANK YOU.

Love, love, love, love, love.

x ND



The photo above is a total internet cliche, as well as having been destroyed by the phenomenon of Beiberism. However, it is the best way to demonstrate my undying affection for you all.

Also, yes, I have less hair. Thanks for noticing. x

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Perfectly Pretty Penguins!

So, I'm not sure if we've discussed this, but it's not just the contents of Popular Penguins I have a certain amount of affection for (okay, for MOST of them). I also have a real soft spot for the design of the jackets.

The orange and white are so crisp and recognisable, they truly are a fantastic example of branding. A simple design that gets the point across: this is a book at a value price, from a trusted publishing brand.

And it seems I'm not the only one who appreciates this simple, yet remarkably effective design.

I was directed by the lovely ProfessorFunk to a post on Maria Popova's Brainpickings blog. (Which is regularly updated with some magnificent reads, and you should definitely check it out!) It was about this time that I was debating whether or not to embark on this project, and the fact that someone had dedicated an entire book to the design of Penguin's range from 1935 to 2005 really cemented the importance of the brand, and therefore the project, for me.

Here's a few photos from the book, and be sure to check out the original article from Brainpickings too.










Absolutely marvellous, don't you think?

x ND

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Lovely Little Surprise...


My mum got this for me today. Hence, she is awesome.*

It will be the book I read after I complete Jane Eyre. Any guesses as to which one it is? (HINT: think of an actor with the initials PSH...)

If you look REALLY close, you might be able to see the title!

Happy guessing! (And THANKS MUM!)

x ND


Post-Script:

*However, after watching Laid this evening, she changed it over to RPA. I do not like looking at people's internal organs. Hence, her awesome level has temporarily decreased slightly.

However, it has increased slightly due to the fact that she is awesome enough that I can watch Laid in her presence.

In other words, she's still awesome, and I don't like blood and guts, a fact she likes to exploit with television shows that make me squeamish.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Women's Day 2011 & Jane Eyre

I am writing this post because a few very important things have coincided today.

Today was the 100th International Women's Day. (Yes, I realise this has been posted remarkably late in the proceedings. I've been busy. Also, it's still March 8th in Canada, so it totally counts.)

Today, I finished the tenth chapter of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre, the first on my Popular Penguins list. This means I'm more than a quarter of the way through.

The cover of my edition, which I bought for $5 at a stall at a uni fundraiser in 2010.
No, it's not the Popular Penguin edition.
Yes, you're just going to have to deal with that.

Also, all the references in this article will likely have originated here. Oh, come on. Don't look at me like that. This is a blog, not a PhD thesis!

** THIS PART OF THE BLOG MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS. **

Consider yourself alerted. (I'll try to keep them as vague as humanly possible.)

Told you so.

So, it is undeniable that Jane Eyre was an early, albeit fictional, feminist. From the start of the book she's passionate, refusing to take the crap people throw at her, even when they have the irrefutable right to abuse the heck out her with no consequence whatsoever (as least as far as the law and society are concerned). As noted on that most dubious of sources, it is only when she is recognised as an equal that everyone (well, almost everyone) gets their Happily Ever After.

I cannot begin to fathom how people could have thought this story to have been written by a man, but Bronte (aka Currer Bell) pulled it off. This book really conjures the image of Charlotte Bronte finishing it, pulling off her dainty little glove and raising a middle finger to the patriarchal establishment, even if it was metaphorically.

In my previous reading of the book, and in this time around as well, I really admire that Jane acknowledges her need for love and affection from those around her, but at the same time letting them know that she will not endure undue punishment in order to receive that love. She is willing to overcome hardship to get what she wants, but she draws the line at being exploited.

I think that is a good lesson to take away from this book, and this day.

It's not about women being on top, or putting men down. It's about saying, "This is what I deserve. If you're not going to give it to me, you're not going to get what you want from me, because I have plenty of other places I can be where I will be appreciated."

Your gender doesn't matter in this lesson; it can be applied to cases based on race, religion, sexuality, body shape, social status, whatever. You have the right to be you, and if someone doesn't like that or treats you badly for it, then you've got to remind them of all the good stuff they'll be missing out on, because you don't have to stick around.

And I can tell you, that is a lesson that hit home professionally this week. I'm not happy where I am, so I'm going to change it.

Just you wait and see.