Newly Recovered English Classical Translations, 1600-1800 is a unique resource: a volume presenting for the first time a wide-ranging collection of never-before-printed English translations from ancient Greek and Latin verse and drama of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Transcribed and edited from surviving manuscripts, these translations open a window onto a period in which the full richness and diversity of engagement with classical texts through
translation is only now becoming apparent. Upwards of 100 identified translators and many more anonymous writers are included, from familiar and sometimes eminent figures to the obscure and unknown. Since very few of them expected their work to be printed, these translators often felt free to experiment,
innovate, or subvert established norms. Their productions thus shed new light on how their source texts could be read. As English verse they hold their ground remarkably well against the printed translations of the time, and regularly surpass them.
The more than 300 translations included here, from epigrams to (selections from) epics, are richly informative about the reception of classical poetry and drama in this crucial period, copiously augmenting and sometimes challenging the narratives suggested by the more familiar record of printed translations. This edition will prove to have far-reaching implications for the history both of classical reception and of English translation - a phenomenon central to English literary endeavour for
much of this era.
Stuart Gillespie is a Reader in English Literature at the University of Glasgow whose research interests lie in English literary classicism and translation. He is the founding editor of Translation and Literature (Edinburgh UP, 1992-present), now the pre-eminent academic journal in this field, and was from 2001 joint general editor of the Oxford History of Literary Translation in English, co-editing two of its five volumes. There followed The Cambridge Companion to Lucretius (co-edited with Philip Hardie; CUP, 2007) and the monograph English Translation and Classical Reception: Towards a New Literary History (Wiley, 2011), the first book to address a range of English classical translations found only in manuscript.