We have made a Spanish to English Interlinear translation of the book "The Colloquy of the Dogs" written by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra himself, the author of Don Quixote.
Widely considered as Cervantes' finest work next to Don Quixote. Entirely in the Interlinear format.
The translation includes:
We have based this Interlinear translation on certain principles.
Interlinear translations attempt to translate words one by one and literally. However, there is an exception to this rule: where a literal translation would impair understanding. If it would, understanding is prioritized.
For example, the usual translation of the sentence above would be "Two thieves stole a very good horse in Antiquerra." Yet, we have translated it completely literally, as we think that such a literal translation is still understandable, especially since the reader is supposed to have at least some prior knowledge of how Spanish works:
But try reading this translation if it were literal:
As you can see, in such cases, if translated literally, understanding would suffer. Thus we have chosen a more understandable translation:
In summary, we have made our translations to be literal, even if slightly clumsy. Unless such clumsiness hinders understanding, in which case we have opted for understanding.
Yet, Spanish and English are language with quite similar structures, thus our translations are often both literal and understandable at the same time.
Our Interlinear translation is made to help learners make use of the fact that English and Spanish both share a common vocabulary. We use Spanish and English cognates where possible, even in situations where the word would commonly be translated into English differently.
The word "coloquio" is a good example. "Coloquio" in the title of the novella represents something closer to a "dialogue" than to a "colloquy," which is more formal. Yet, we translate it as a "colloquy," as it still conveys the meaning, and it also helps learners remember the Spanish word better.
There are many examples of this in the translation: "error" is translated as "error" (not "mistake"), "sepultura" as "sepulture" (not "grave"), "campo" as "campo" (not "field"), "consentir" as "consent" (not "agree"), etc.
We use this principle whenever possible, as we believe this reveals the links between English and Spanish and helps learners memorize Spanish words.
"The Colloquy of the Dogs" is a novella written by Cervantes in 1612. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, The Colloquy is Cervantes' "most profound and original creation next to Don Quixote."
Miguel de Cervantes was an early 17th century Spanish writer who has had an enormous influence on the Spanish language and literature. He is often compared to Shakespeare. His works are among the most widely read and studied works in Modern literature.
"The Colloquy of the Dogs" recounts a conversation between two dogs overheard (or perhaps hallucinated) by a soldier at a hospital. In the conversation, one of the dogs tells his own life story. In so doing, he provides a fascinating overview of the Spanish society and worldview in the 17th century. The story describes different lives of people in Spain, it also reveals the beliefs, biases and values common for the times.
The novella serves not only as an interesting window on the Spanish society of the time, but it is a also worthy contender for the first talking-dog story in Western literature. This Interlinear book serves as a great gateway for Spanish learners to Cervantes and the Spanish literature.