In getting my books, I have been always solicitous of an ample margin; this not so much through any love of the thing in itself, however agreeable, as for the facility it affords me of pencilling suggested thoughts, agreements, and differences of opinion, or brief critical comments in general. Where what I have to note is too much to be included within the narrow limits of a margin, I commit it to a slip of paper, and deposit it between the leaves; taking care to secure it by an imperceptible portion of gum tragacanth paste.
(Edgar Allan Poe, “Marginalia.” In: The Works of Edgar Allan Poe, Vol. 7. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1914, p. 255).
“I am Psmith,” said the old Etonian reverently. “There is a preliminary P before the name. This, however, is silent. Like the tomb. Compare such words as ptarmigan, psalm, and phthisis.”
(P.G. Wodehouse, Psmith, Journalist. London: A. & C. Black, 1915, p. 225).
A spirit of innovation is generally the result of a selfish temper, and confined views. People will not look forward to posterity, who never look backward to their ancestors.
(Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France. London: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1951, p. 31).
Once upon a time, a visiting scholar presented a lecture on the topic: ‘How many philosophical positions are there in principle?’ ‘In principle,’ he began, ‘there are exactly 12 philosophical positions.’ A voice called from the audience: ‘Thirteen.’ ‘There are,’ the lecturer repeated, ‘exactly 12 possible philosophical positions; not one less and not one more.’ ‘Thirteen,’ the voice from the audience called again. ‘Very well, then,’ said the lecturer, now perceptibly irked, ‘I shall proceed to enumerate the 12 possible philosophical positions. The first is sometimes called “naive realism”. It is the view according to which things are, by and large, very much the way that they seem to be.’ ‘Oh,’ said the voice from the audience. ‘Fourteen!’
(Jerry Fodor, “Who Ate the Salted Peanuts?,” London Review of Books, Vol. XXVIII, No. 18, September 21, 2006, pp. 9–10).
Enumerando afinal os requisitos do bom tradutor, vou dizê-los, por ordem de importância:
1. Bom conhecimento da língua-alvo;
2. Bom conhecimento da língua fonte;
3. Bom senso;
4. Boa cultura geral;
5. Senso de observação;
6. Humildade unida à consciência do próprio valor;
8. Gosto pelo estudo;
9. Espírito associativo.
(Paulo Rónai, “Problemas Gerais da Tradução”. In: A Tradução Técnica e seus Problemas. São Paulo: Editora Álamo, 1983, p. 14).
Épocas, nações, povos e a humanidade inteira podem se enganar durante um período. Continuar no engano por séculos e milênios é difícil, pois o tempo neutraliza as forças e interesses que produziram o engano. É por isso que a verdadeira cultura consiste em ler livros que, no dizer de Goethe, são sempre atuais precisamente porque nunca foram atuais.
(Olavo de Carvalho, Facebook, 6 de Setembro de 2015).
A love for and knowledge of literature and the arts is of little practical advantage in the modern world and may even, by raising suspicion that its owner considers himself, in Gaisford’s phrase, “elevated above the vulgar herd,” turn out to be an actual disadvantage.
(Bernard Knox, The Oldest Dead White European Males and Other Reflections on the Classics. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1993, p. 73).