“The Nymph” comprises ten stories from Azul…, a book written by Rubén Darío and published in 1888, and considered to be extremely important contributions to Spanish-American literature.
"The Nymph" follows the Interlinear format, in which all the Spanish words and expressions are followed by an English translation right beneath.
Darío's best stories in the order of difficulty. 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 Nymph" is a collection of short stories coming from Rubén Darío's book Azul..., but re-arranged in difficulty for Spanish learners, and with Interlinear subtitles added.
Rubén Darío was a Nicaraguan author of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century who was a key initiator of the literary movement called modernismo or Modernism. Darío has left a lasting influence on Spanish literature and journalism in general, and he has been unofficially named "Prince of Castilian Letters."
Darío's collection of short stories in "The Nymph" represent the larger theme of the struggle of man against society. The stories are truly modern: they include exoticism and symbolic imagery in a world of fantasy, mythology, mystery and colour. These stories also feature the color blue as a common theme which appears repeatedly. For the author this colour represented something symbolic. He wrote that the colour blue was “the colour of daydreams, the colour of the art, a colour that is Hellenic and Homeric, oceanic and fundamental colour”.
We hope that this Interlinear book serves as a great introduction to Nicaraguan and Central American literature, as well as to the Spanish language.