TRANSLATED BY MARJORY AND OLIVER WARDROPS
GANATLEBA PUBLISHERS. TBILISI-1987
ილია ჭავჭავაძის თხზულებანი
თარგმნილი მარჯორი და ოლივერ უორდროპების მიერ
The book features some works of Ilia Chavchavadze translated into English by brother and sister Oliver and Marjory Wardrop. The translations have not lost their literary value to the present day. The publication is intended as a gift to the Georgian reader in connection with the 150th anniversary celebrations of the birth of the outstanding Georgian writer and public figure.
Text prepared for publication, with a preface and notes by Ia Popkhadze.
Edited by Dr. Guram Sharadze.
The special interest shown by, Marjory and Oliver Wardrop for Georgian spiritual culture is well known. By translating a number of literary works they gave the versatile English reader an idea of Georgian literature with its centuries — old tradition.
The spiritual affinity of the Wardrops with Ilia Chavchavadze, a great son of Georgia, was not accidental. Their genuine sympathy was confirmed by the translation of the eminent Georgian writer’s literary works, which they did with affection and reverence.
Hitherto the reading public was aware only of Marjory Wardrop’s English translation of Ilia’s “The Hermit” (London 1895). In recent years (1981, 1984) Prof. Guram Sharadze has discovered some other translations in the Wardrop collection of the Bodleian Library, at Oxford pointing to a broader scale of the translational activity of the Wardrops. Apart from “The Hermit”, the following renderings of Ilia’s prose are presented for the first time here: “Notes of a Journey from Vladikavkaz to Tiflis”, “Is that a Man?!” (fragments), “The Sportsman’s story” (several chapters),” Autobiography”.
Chavchavadze’s poetic heritage is represented by these titles: “Spring”, “The Sleeping Maid”, “Elegy”, “Ah!… She — to whom My Dear Desires…” an extract from the poem “The Vision” (“O our Aragva”), “Bazalethi’s Lake” (abridged).
The texts of these translations were prepared for publication according to the autographs preserved at Oxford, the xeroxed copies of which were brought from England by Prof. Sharadze and kindly transferred to the present writer for publication. The text of “The Hermit” is published according to the London edition of 1895, the latter now being a rare book.
Today the greatest merit of these translations would seem to lie in the inner warmth and affection with which they were done, which will always be remembered by the grateful Georgian people.