Excerpt from The Ballades of Théodore De Banville: Translated Into English Verse
So far as I am aware, no complete translation has so far been published in England of the Ballades of Theodore de Banville. In issuing this one I would like to emphasize what Banville himself say... s in his Preface as to the difficulty of writing a good Ballade. The di¿iculty becomes acute when the Ballade has to be translated, as the great difficulty of finding rhymes is aggravated by the necessity of keeping in touch with the original. I do not claim indulgence on this account for any shortcomings of expression or for any failure to render fully the spirit of the French but I do claim a larger freedom of treatment than is generally accorded to translations in less difficult forms, and I claim, too, the privilege of sacrificing the letter occasionally for the sake of retaining the spirit in its fulness. Nobody, I fancy, would have been more willing to accord or to employ this privilege than Banville himself: and nobody can be more conscious of the shortcomings of these versions than his translator.
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