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:) From Gerard Hoffnung: French widow affords delightful prospects (translation humor)
Thread poster: Silvina Beatriz Codina

Silvina Beatriz Codina  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 15:02
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Apr 18, 2002

In a thread I posted a few days ago about involuntarily funny translations, someone quoted the translation about a \"French widow in every room, affording delightful prospects. In fact this \"translation\" is apocryphal: it is part of a piece written by musician and humorist Gerard Hoffnung, purported to be a letter from a Tyrolean hotel owner in response to a query.



I thought you will like to read the whole text (or I think it is the whole text). Even if it is not a true translation, it is indeed a case of \"se non è vero, è ben trovato\" (meaning, it is not as if we\'ve never seen this kind of \"translation\"). Enjoy!



Dear Madam: I am honorable to accept your impossible request. Unhappy it is, I here have not bedroom with bath. A bathroom with bed I have. I can, though, give you a washing, with pleasure, in a most clean spring with no one to see. I insist that you will like this... I am amazing diverted by your entreaty for a room. I can offer you a commodious chamber with balcony imminent to the romantic gorge, and I hope that you want to drop in. A vivacious stream washes my doorsteps, so do not concern yourself that I am not too good in bath, I am superb in bed. Sorrowfully I cannot abide your auto... Having freshly taken over the propriety of this notorious house, I am wishful that you remove to me your esteemed costume. Standing among savage scenery, the hotel offers stupendous revelations. There is a french widow in every bedroom, affording delightful prospects. I give personal look to the interior wants of each guests. Here, you shall be well fed-up and agreeably drunk. Our charges for weekly visitors are scarcely creditable. Peculiar arrangements for gross parties, our motto is \"ever serve you right!\"



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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:02
Member (2000)
Russian to English
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Hoffnung's hotel letter Apr 18, 2002

Thank you for printing the full text of this. I knew it was from a book by Hoffnung but I couldn\'t find the book and the \"French widow\" was just one phrase from it which had stuck in my mind.

Thanks again!

Jack Doughty.


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:) From Gerard Hoffnung: French widow affords delightful prospects (translation humor)

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