how did translation start in Old Britain?
Thread poster: Djidji74

Local time: 19:24
Arabic to English
+ ...
Dec 9, 2007

Hi eveyone,
Could anyone tell me how translation started in the UK. I just need a brief history of translation in the UK.
I know that it started in the 12th century when Gorffrey of Monmouth. But there may be someone who has a more reliable knowledge regarding this subject.
So, I would be very helpfull if you could help me out.
Thanks in advance.

[Edited at 2007-12-09 23:32]


Benno Groeneveld  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:24
English to Dutch
+ ...
King Alfred, born 849, reigned 871-899 Dec 10, 2007

wrote a letter to introduce his version of the Cura Pastoralis of Gregory the Great. He sent the letter to the bishop of Worcester. In it he sets out his plans for the education of his people and the supply of translations into English.

Many years ago, when I was a student of English at the University of Amsterdam, I read the introduction in the original Old English. I don't remember much, but I DO remember that King Alfred complained bitterly about the state of education in his England: nowadays when we want our children to learn Latin, we have to send them to FRANCE! (I forget the exact words, and I can no longer read Old English -- but I still have the book: Sweet's Anglos-Saxon Reader in prose and verse).

You may want to check Alfred's history.

Oh yes, I also worked in excavations in Winchester, England (1967, 1969), when we dug through the Roman road to open up the Iron Age defense trench dug around the city (and I saw remnants of the Roman forum underneath the cathedral). There was (still is?) a big statue of Alfred just above the town.


Peter Linton  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:24
Member (2002)
Swedish to English
+ ...
Adelard of Bath Dec 10, 2007

As Benno says, King Alfred was the starting point. Later on, Adelard of Bath was a significant 12 C figure in British translation. He translated a lot of key Arabic texts on science, mathematics etc.

See Wikipedia


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how did translation start in Old Britain?

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