Read One, No One and One Hundred Thousand by Luigi Pirandello in Italian

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

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Explanation of the Interlinear method in two steps
Explanation of the Interlinear method in two steps
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What is One, No One and One Hundred Thousand about?

One, No One and One Hundred Thousand (Uno, Nessuno e Centomila, 1926) is a book about Vitangelo Moscarda, an ordinary young man who inherited his father’s bank in Richieri. One day, Moscarda’s wife observes that his nose is slightly crooked. This seemingly unimportant ocurrence triggers a chain of events that cause the protagonist to go on a quest chasing the elusive nature of self-knowledge.

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Nobel Prize–winning Italian writer's last novel!

Luigi Pirandello (1867–1936) was an Italian dramatist, novelist, poet, and short story writer, awarded the 1934 Nobel Prize in Literature. Pirandello’s last novel synthesises his thought and style in a complex psychological investigation that penetrates the absurdity of social conventions and breaks through the illusion of the unity of the self. The writer called this novel his ‘most bitter’ but also ‘most humorous’.

How was this Italian translation made?

Literal but understandable

This translation translates words literally as much as possible, sometimes even where the English word order would sound a bit unusual because of this.

See this phrase from the book which we have translated literally because it is still perfectly understandable:

Ma But
una a
maledetta cursed
voce voice
mi me
diceva was telling
dentro, within,
che, that
era was
anche also
lui he

However, Pirandello uses a lot of idiomatic and colloquial expressions, which are translated as such and not literally. The sentence below serves as a good example of that:

Mio My
padre father;
il quale who,
per quanto even though
ci si fosse adoperato he had tried
con le buone e con le cattive, in every possible way,
non era riuscito had not succeeded

Embracing cognates

Italian and English are related languages, and we try to emphasize the connections where possible by translating words using cognates.

For example, see how we translated this sentence by using cognates as much as possible:

Siete You are
ancora still
sconcertato disconcerted
- -
vi vedo I can tell
- -
irritato, irritated,
mortificato mortified
della about the
pessima terrible
figura impression

Other translations are available for the cognates. In this example, sconcertato, irritato and mortificato could have been translated as, respectively, bewildered, irritated and embarrassed but we deliberately chose the translations that emphasize common links between Italian and English: disconcerted, irritated and mortified.

However, we do this only if the words are not false cognates, meaning that they sound very similar in the two languages but do not actually have the same meaning. Thus we still translated domanda as question and not demand, for example.

Translated by Aistė Kiltinavičiūtė (PhD Candidate in Italian at the University of Cambridge).

This Interlinear book includes:

  • over 300 standard-book pages
  • nearly 40 thousand translated words and expressions
  • original Italian text & aligned Interlinear translations
  • a separately available Italian-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

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