Read The Girl With The Golden Eyes by Honoré de Balzac in French

In Interlinear, the French text is followed by an English translation below each word or phrase.

How the Interlinear translation method works
How the Interlinear translation method works, vertical display

Interlinear is like subtitles for books…

Explanation of the Interlinear method in two steps
Explanation of the Interlinear method in two steps
More about Interlinear

What is The Girl With The Golden Eyes about?

The Girl With The Golden Eyes (La fille aux yeux d'or) is a classic French novella. It depicts the Parisian life and mores in the XIX-th century and tells a gripping tale involving hedonism, rivalry, cynicism, and a range of other human emotions.

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Honoré de Balzac's controversial Romantic novel!

Honoré de Balzac was a 19th century French novelist, the author of La Comédie Humaine, one of the founders of realism, an influencer of countless writers, philosophers, and artists, and, all around, perhaps the most recognizable name in French literature.

How was this French translation made?

Literal but understandable

We translate words one by one and literally except where that would hinder understanding. For example:

Il y a There are
des blancs becs novices
de of
quarante forty
ans. years old.

The natural English word order in the phrase above would probably be closer to "There are forty years old novices" but the phrase still is understandable, thus we translated it very literaly. Yet this would be much harder to understand:

Ça This
m’est to me is
arrivé, arrived,
à to
moi. me.

Therefore this is how we have chosen to translate that phrase in this book:

Ça This
m’est arrivé, à moi. has happened to me.

Embracing cognates

We try to take advantage of the similarity between the French and English vocabularies and to use cognates whenever it is possible. For example, here is a phrase we translated:

Prendre Take on
la the
physionomie. physiognomy.

The more usual translation of physionomie may be appearance but we have chosen physiognomy because we think that shows how related French and English are, and arguably even helps convey the meaning of Balzac's sentence better.

Similarly, we have translated the French word sensation as sensation instead of the more usual feeling, salon as salon instead of living room, professait as professed instead of claimed, etc.

We hope that such highlighting of cognates will help French learners notice the links between French and English.

Translated by Susie Cronin, a PhD in French at the University of Cambridge.

This Interlinear book includes:

  • 128 standard-book pages
  • over 23 thousand translated words and expressions
  • the original text with aligned Interlinear translations - allows you to closely follow the original text
  • a separately available French-only version of the text to get additional practice after having read the text with the Interlinear translation
  • files in the printable or electronically readable PDF format, as well as MOBI and EPUB format files for Kindles and other e-book readers, tablets, and phones - all immediately available to download
  • free French audiobook included!

Available to order right now.

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