Thursday, February 28, 2008

NLM Translation Projects: Help Bring the Richness of the Western Liturgical Tradition to English-Speaking Readers

To our English speakers who are fluent in Italian and/or French:

The NLM would like to inquire with our readership as to who might be interested, could make the time in their spare time, and who is qualified to pursue the translation of one, two or all of the following important liturgical studies:

Ambrosian Rite

Il Rito Ambrosiano, Pietro Borella, Brescia, 1964.

Il Breviario Ambrosiano, Enrico Cattaneo. Milano, 1943.

Intendere la Messa. Dogma - storia - spiritualità nella liturgia ambrosiana della Messa, Ernesto Teodoro Moneta Caglio, Milano, Ancora 1939.

Lyons Rite

L'Ancienne Liturgie romaine. Le rite lyonnais, Dom Denys Buenner, O.S.B. (Originally published in the 1930's, reprinted in 1969 as well.)

Obviously a person could express in interest in only one of these projects, multiple projects, or they might only be willing to commit to helping translate a certain amount of the work in a team effort.

Not certain if you are "qualified"? Not a problem.

Some individuals who either have officially done translation work, or who are fluent in these sorts of works in both languages, having kindly put together a couple of "test passages" to help assess one's qualification for pursuing such translation work. So if you aren't certain about your qualifications, you needn't worry! This will be a good measure to test that.


I am also curious if we have anyone in our midst who is up on the legalities (copyright and otherwise) of the translation and publication of works of these dates?

How else to help?

To even pursue the translation of these works, it will be necessary to get either a hardcopy or, even better, digitized copies of these works in their entirety -- including illustrations. Digitized is preferable for it is easier to work with. So if you cannot translate, perhaps you can contribute in that way.

Why bother with all this?

For one thing, it is important that we rediscover our rich Western liturgical tradition. Each of these form a part of that important tapestry. How unfortunate would it be, for example if we didn't have Fr. Bonniwell's History of the Dominican Liturgy, or the summaries provided by Archdale King? Would it not be important, interesting and beneficial to have other Bonniwell like studies for the other Western rites? I for one think so.

In fact, learning about these rites becomes a way to even better appreciate the Roman rite which most of us worship within, as well as gain insights into matters like the development of the liturgy, liturgical tradition, liturgical theology and so forth.

One religious mentioned to me how this task of translating such liturgical or theological works is the equivalent in our day to the monks who transcribed the illuminated manuscripts in the middle ages, because by so doing, one is preserving and promoting these important things.

If you think you'd be interested in helping with any of these projects, do contact me and we can discuss the nature of your interest further.

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