Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis (Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Latin edition)
Latin translation of the first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in which Harry Potter, a normal eleven-year-old boy, discovers that he is a wizard. Long ago, Harry's parents were killed in a battle with the evil Lord Voldemort. When we first meet Harry, he is living miserably with his repulsive and non-magical (or Muggle) Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon Dursley, and their even more revolting son, Dudley. Following a bizarre but hilarious chain of events, Harry finds himself at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, with an outrageous cast of characters, including super-smart Hermione Granger, vile Draco Malfoy, sinister Professor Snape, and the wise Headmaster Albus Dumbledore. Adventures galore ensue.
Please Do the Rest of Them!
By E. Schechter - July 15, 2003
This is a smooth and clever translation, perfect for the person who wants an enjoyable quick read to refurbish fluency in the language. The bright style of the original is preserved, and it is obvious that the translator has his own sense of humor as well, playing with words and phrasing without sacrificing accuracy. This book would make an excellent supplementary text for students at about second-year level. I would like to see the other books in the series put into Latin, although I know that is too much to hope for; however, these books would be a wonderful study series if translated in accord with the level of the book in English, each becoming more complex.
Enjoyable and useful. Can we have more, please?
By Tom Leoni - July 20, 2005
As far as length and complexity, Harrius Potter provides a much-needed middle-ground between the simple works such as Fabulae Mirabiles and the less challenging of the Classics.
Sensing that such was the case, I bought this book for a specific reason. I had studied Latin in my younger years and, having recently taken it up again, I wanted to teach myself to read and understand a longer work directly without translating it (even subconsciously) in my mind.
The simple but engaging subject of this book, together with the impeccable Latin in which it is written, proved to be a perfect combination for my puspose. As I turned the pages of Harrius Potter, the dictionary became less and less necessary, until I realized that I was able to *taste* the language directly off the page.
Apart from this personal anecdote, I enjoyed Harrius Potter for many reasons. The Latin is simple yet quite elegant; virtually all verb-moods and tenses are employed along the most... read more
By Edwin J. Firmage - December 31, 2005
Great book, great translation.
Since this is the first modern book that I've read in Latin, the thing that initially surprised me most is the fact that it could be done at all. It's a testament to the timeless quality of J. K. Rowling's writing, as well as to the brilliance of her translator, Peter Needham, that the book reads beautifully and fluently despite the occasional appearance of twentieth-century problems such as Uncle Vernon's car (autocinetum), the trafffic jam (vehicula impedita) in which it gets stuck, and motorcycles (birotulae automatariae), flying and earth-bound.
What I began to realize as I read Needham's delightful translation is that reports of the demise of Latin have, as they say, been exaggerated. One of my Greek professors used to joke about a student of his who went on to study at Oxford after getting a degree in classics here in the U.S. The report came back that his tutor at Oxford was pleased with this student's Latin, to which the... read more