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Theodor Fontane
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Theodor Fontane's
John Maynard and its translations...



In 1996, when Julie and Amy Huberman translated "John Maynard" into English, we knew of no other English translation. Shortly after they had completed their translation, we learned that Burt Erickson Nelson had been simultaneously working on a translation to be put on a commemorative plaque. When we put the Huberman translation up on the web, we heard from Jochen Schmidtke, who provided us with a literal translation of the poem as well as translations into German of some of the newspaper articles on the site. In January of 2008 we learned of yet another translation, done before any of the others, but never published. This translation was sent to us by Martin Möller, an historian from Berlin. When his brother, Michael F. Möller, a professor of Lutheran theology in Philadelphia, PA, died in 1998, he found a 1987 translation among his papers. Then in December of 2010, Ziggy Rein, a Donauschwabe (Danube Swabian) whose family immigrated to the United States in 1956 and who lives in Ohio, independently translated the poem. When he discovered this website, he sent us his translation, the last to be added to this collection.

The links below will take you to the original poem in German and to all of the translations we know about.

The first German printing of Theodor Fontane's original ballad of "John Maynard" as found in Berliner Bunte Mappe: Originalbeiträge Berliner Künstler und Schriftsteller. (München: Verlagsanstalt für Kunst und Wissenschaft, vormals Friedrich Bruckmann, 1886). The poem, p. 22. Front cover.

 

The first Austrian printing of Theodor Fontane's original ballad of "John Maynard" as found in Berliner Bunte Mappe: Originalbeiträge Berliner Künstler und Schriftsteller. (München: Verlagsanstalt für Kunst und Wissenschaft, vormals Friedrich Bruckmann, 1886). Edition: by C. Angerer & Göschl, Vienna. The poem, p. 22. Title page. Front cover.

 

"John Maynard" by Theodor Fontane in German (1920 version) with Jochen Schmidtke's English translation (2002) beside it.

 

Norman Barry's collation of Fontane's original "John Maynard" in German -- based on the 1886 and 1920 versions.

 

An English translation of Fontane's "John Maynard" by Julie and Amy Huberman (1996).

 

The plaque on Buffalo's waterfront displaying "John Maynard" as translated into English by Burt Erickson Nelson (1996) with Norman Barry's transcription.

 

An English translation of Fontane's "John Maynard" by Michael F. Möller (1987).

 

An English translation of Fontane's "John Maynard" by Ziggy Rein (2010).

 


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