L'Eunuque de Terance (sic) par Bayf (1565)


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Jean-Antoine de Baïf Translator
Full title: 
Manuscript verse translation modified and corrected by Jean-Antoine de Baïf when he published it for the first time in Les Jeux (1673). Baïf had also translated Terence's Heautontimorumenos, but his 'Bourreau de lui-même' was never put in print and is now lost. Other translations apparently met a similar fate. Du Verdier testifies to having seen a manuscript containing Baïf's translation of Trachiniae, Medea and Plutus, none of which has survived. In L'Eunuque, Baïf omits Terence's prologue, and frenchifies references to Antiquity, such as characters' names, while still setting the action in Athens. The translation is in octosyllables, a common meter in comedies of the time, used by Jodelle in Eugène (1552), and by Grévin in Les Esbahis (1560). The variation of masculine and feminine rhymes is not respected throughout. Sources: BNF catalogue général and Lawton, Harold W. Térence en France au seizième siècle, éditions et traductions. 1926, p.511-526, 554. The manuscript is accessible on Gallica, http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b90595874 (21/02/2012).
Publication details: 
Manuscript [Bibl. nat., ms. fr. 867], first published in 1673
Ancient works on which this translation is based: 

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L'Eunuque de Terance (sic) par Bayf (1565), accessed at http://www.apgrd.ox.ac.uk/productions/translations/8883 <4 December 2020>