Oxyrhynchus 1381: In memoriam Daniel Simeoni

Caroline Disler

Abstract

The Hellenistic Greek papyrus Oxyrhynchus 1381 contains a translator’s prologue that has been overlooked by translation historians despite its significance as evidence for a far more creative view of religious translation outside the confines of the Judaeo-Christian tradition. This important text is described in its historical context and compared to contemporaneous Pagan and early contending Judaeo-Christian developments in sacred translation as well as to classical secular translation practices. This will provide some valuable insights into the many factors informing the ancient origins and evolution of modern expectations and concerns in the western translation community such as translatability issues, preoccupations with fidelity, rigid adherence to the source text, the translator’s invisibility and lack of creative freedom.

Keywords
Table of contents

Oxyrhynchus 1381 is the technical title of a papyrus text of tremendous potential significance to the translation community. For some curious reason it has remained virtually unknown to translation historians, although discovered well over a century ago.

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