Translation of ‘The Russian God’ (Русский бог) by Prince Vyazemskiy

Ian Mac Eochagáin’s translation.

Maceochi's Language Learning

Prince P.A. Vyazemskiy laments the dirt, cold and hunger in which Russia finds itself. This poem was written in 1828, three years after the coronation of Tsar Nicholas I. The “Germans” of the last verse are the German Balts who were, in Vyazemsky’s opinion, far too numerous in the form of hangers-on at court.

This was an easy enough poem to translate given the repetitive rhyme of bog (‘god’) with the second line of each verse. You might be surprised by how many words do rhyme with ‘god’ in English. I simply listed the all and crossed them off as I used them to avoid repeating myself (in which I wasn’t entirely successful). Because the Russian word bog is traditionally pronounced with an aspirated gh-like sound, though, you start to wonder if any of them poem really rhymes at all.

A final note: Vyazemskiy himself almost-rhymed poperyok with bog in verse…

View original post 253 more words

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s