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Subject: The magnificents

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Date Posted: Sat, Dec 04 2010, 11:16:29 GMT

While translating ch.11, I googled *a fit of the magnificents* (p.296, Scribner HB 2001), and found the following interesting passage.

*A curious trait in the disposition of the British sailor, says the "Auckland News", was brought to light during the police office proceedings this morning. The men of a certain vessel now in harbor had been disturbed at their supper to perform certain work absolutely necessary to enable the ship to work off a lee shore, and consequently took a fit of the "magnificents" and refused to do what was required - preferring to drift quietly on the rocks, and probably to "fiddler's green", to compromising their dignity by postponing their meal. Fortunately the wind shifted and the vessel was blown off the land and into this port, where the men were duly put into "dock", whence they emerged to operate upon different rocks at Mount Eden.*

The source is given as: Inter-Provinotal Shipping. West Coast Times, Putanga 1741, 1 Haratua 1871, Page 2.

The French translation (Passage du Marais, 2005, p.312) is usually a very careful one but this time it skips the words altogether. The Italian translation (Rizzoli, 2003, p.299) is awful (bungled, slack and full of mistakes) but for once guesses correctly with "un attacco di nobile risentimento".

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