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Darwin Correspondence Project

From S. J. Pozzi1   11 May 1873

Paris | 131 Boulevard St. Germain

11 Mai 1873

Monsieur et trés honoré maître

C’est pour moi un honneur d’avoir été accepté par vous pour traduire votre dernier ouvrage “L’Expression des Emotions chez l’Homme et les animaux”.2 Je m’acquitte le mieux que je puis de cette tâche, et je désire que votre œuvre si intéressante n’ait pas trop à souffrir en passant dans notre langue; je compte avoir terminé le mois prochain.

L’impatience de l’éditeur m’a poussé à m’adjoindre un collaborateur des plus instruits, Mr le Dr René Benoît, ancien prosecteur de la Faculté de médecine de Montpellier.3 Grâce à son aide, tout peut être soumis à une double révision qui rend les erreurs très difficiles.

Toute notre ambition est de recevoir votre approbation; ce sera pour nous la meilleure récompense de notre peine, celle dont nous serons fiers.

Voici une petite difficulté que nous n’avons pu résoudre et que vous seriez bien bon de lever pour nous:

Page 104, ad finem, vous dites “the word toad expresses in all the language of Europe the habit of swelling.” Il nous a été impossible de trouver à Paris le Dictionnaire de Mr Wedgwood—et nous n’avons pu comprendre quelle analogie il pouvait y avoir entre les mots français qui correspondent à toad et à swelling.4

Pourriez vous aussi nous donner les mots français équivalents pour puff adder jungle fowl, Spitz–dog, barn–owl que nous ne trouvons pas dans les lexiques?

Agréez, Monsieur, avec mes remerciments anticipés, l’expression de mes sentiments respectueux | Dr S. Pozzi

Footnotes

For a translation of this letter, see Appendix I.
Pozzi had been proposed as the translator of Expression into French when ill health made it impossible for Jean Jacques Moulinié to undertake the work (see letter from C.-F. Reinwald, 4 March 1873 and n. 8).
Justin-Miranda René Benoît was Pozzi’s co-translator; Charles-Ferdinand Reinwald was the publisher of the French edition of Expression (Pozzi and Benoît trans. 1874).
CD had cited Hensleigh Wedgwood’s Dictionary of English etymology (Wedgwood 1859–[67]) for the statement that in all European languages the word toad expressed the habit of swelling (see Expression, p. 104). Both Julius Victor Carus, translator of the German edition, and Hermanus Hartogh Heijs van Zouteveen, translator of the Dutch edition, had encountered the same problem with respect to ‘toad’ and ‘swelling’ (see Correspondence vol. 20, letter from J. V. Carus, 31 October 1872, and this volume, letter from Hermanus Hartogh Heijs van Zouteveen, [1873?]).

Bibliography

Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Expression: The expression of the emotions in man and animals. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1872.

Translation

From S. J. Pozzi1   11 May 1873

Paris | 131 Boulevard St. Germain

11 May 1873

Dear Sir and most honoured master

It is an honour for me to have been accepted by you to translate your latest work “The Expression of the Emotions in Man and the animals”.2 I shall acquit myself as well as I can of this task, and I hope that your very interesting work will not have to suffer too much in passing into our language; I expect to have finished next month.

The editor’s impatience has driven me to associate myself with a very highly instructed collaborator, Dr René Benoît, a former prosector at the Montpellier medical faculty.3 Thanks to his help, everything can undergo a double revision, making mistakes very difficult.

Our entire ambition is to receive your approval; it will be the best reward for our trouble and the one we will be proud to have.

Here is a small difficulty which we have not been able to resolve and which you may be so good as to relieve us of:

Page 104, ad finem, you say “the word toad expresses in all the language of Europe the habit of swelling”. It has been impossible for us to find Mr Wedgwood’s Dictionary in Paris—and we have not been able to understand what analogy might exist between the French words which correspond to toad and swelling.4

Could you also give us the equivalent French words for puff adder jungle fowl, Spitz–dog, barn–owl which we cannot find in lexicons?

Believe me, dear Sir, yours sincerely Dr S. Pozzi

Footnotes

For a transcription of this letter in its original French, see pp. 211–12.
Pozzi had been proposed as the translator of Expression into French when ill health made it impossible for Jean Jacques Moulinié to undertake the work (see letter from C.-F. Reinwald, 4 March 1873 and n. 8).
Justin-Miranda René Benoît was Pozzi’s co-translator; Charles-Ferdinand Reinwald was the publisher of the French edition of Expression (Pozzi and Benoît trans. 1874).
CD had cited Hensleigh Wedgwood’s Dictionary of English etymology (Wedgwood 1859–[67]) for the statement that in all European languages the word toad expressed the habit of swelling (see Expression, p. 104). Both Julius Victor Carus, translator of the German edition, and Hermanus Hartogh Heijs van Zouteveen, translator of the Dutch edition, had encountered the same problem with respect to ‘toad’ and ‘swelling’ (see Correspondence vol. 20, letter from J. V. Carus, 31 October 1872, and this volume, letter from Hermanus Hartogh Heijs van Zouteveen, [1873?]).

Bibliography

Correspondence: The correspondence of Charles Darwin. Edited by Frederick Burkhardt et al. 27 vols to date. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1985–.

Expression: The expression of the emotions in man and animals. By Charles Darwin. London: John Murray. 1872.

Summary

French translation of Expression [1874].

Letter details

Letter no.
DCP-LETT-8908
From
Samuel Jean Pozzi
To
Charles Robert Darwin
Sent from
Paris
Source of text
DAR 174: 60
Physical description
4pp (French)

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 8908,” accessed on 4 July 2020, https://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/letter/DCP-LETT-8908.xml

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 21

letter