“Philosopher’s Stone” to Be Translated into Scots
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone has been translated into some unexpected languages, including Latin, Greek, and Welsh, but now, a Scottish publishing company has added another language to the list. Marking the 20th anniversary of the original publication of the book, Itchy Coo, based in Scotland and celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, has been busy translating the book into Scots. This will be the 80th translation of the book into another language.
The book, translated by Matthew Fitt, will be known as Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stane.
It’s been a joy translating Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
As J.K. Rowling worked away at her brilliant first novel in that Edinburgh coffee shop, there must have been a fair few Scots words and phrases floating about in the ether.
I’ve found her prose sits up so beautifully for Scots. I suppose I could say the most challenging aspect was the book’s length, but size and scale are the hallmarks of the Harry Potter novels.
So it was just a case of getting the heid doon and trying to do it justice.
Fitt talked about some of the name changes that occurred.
Professor McGonagall clearly stays the same in Scots, but Dumbledore comes out as ‘Professor Dumbiedykes’.
“Quidditch – with a wee bit of translator’s joukery packery – worked out quite well in Scots as ‘Bizzumbaw’.
Of course, this translation pays tribute to the author – J.K. Rowling famously wrote much of the book in Edinburgh, with Hogwarts based somewhere in Scotland. Itchy Coo is a Scots-language publisher and has previously published translations of books by authors including Roald Dahl, David Walliams, A.A. Milne, and many more.
This new edition of the book will be released in October 2017. If you want a taste of what to expect, here’s the opening line in its glorious Scots translation:
Mr and Mrs Dursley, o nummer fower, Privet Loan, were prood tae say that they were gey normal, thank ye awfie muckle.
Well, it may be familiar, but it would certainly be a challenge taking on the whole book! We can’t help but think that Quidditch sure sounds a lot of fun as “Bizzumbaw” too.
Do you fancy taking on the challenge of reading Philosopher’s Stone in Scots? Let us know if you decide to take it on!