Translations of Sapph. 31, 14 L.-P.

In this article Latin, Russian, German, French and English translations of the Sapph. fr. 31, 14 L.-P. are examined and the reasons of some inexactitude and modifications in these versions are analysed. Comparing her complexion with the colour of grass, Sappho points to the uncommonness of the heroine’s feelings, when she is in a more critical situation, than the Trojans (Il. XV, 4): she is in a death-like state. But unlike Thucydides with his three colours (Hist. II 49, 5) the poetess speaks about the different tints of one colour. The poetess warms to such hyperboles as “more white than egg”, “more golden than gold” etc., and the translators, who replace in her text “greener” with “paler” or add an attribute “dried” to “grass”, change the figure into some botanical description.

Bratukhin A. J. Translations of Sapph. 31, 14 L.-P.