THE SCRUFFY SCOUNDRELS (Gli Straccioni)
The final version of this play has profited considerably from the many helpful comments and insights we received along the way from several of our colleagues at Carleton University. We wish to express here our thanks to Mark Phillips and Douglas Campbell for their invaluable observations concerning matters of tone and diction in the translation, to Gordon Wood. Raymond Morrison and Douglas Campbell for their thoughtful readings of the Introduction which rescued us from numerous inaccuracies and infelicities, and to Michael Thompson for his help with the reading of the galley proofs.
An honourable mention is more than merited by Irene Sanna who so patiently prepared typewritten versions of the script in all its various phases.
Finally, we wish to acknowledge our gratefulness to Carl Amberg, Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, and to Naomi Giffiths, Dean of Arts, for the publication grant needed to see this second title in our series through the press.
For our translation we have consulted the three modern Italian editions of Caro's (Hi Straccioni: A. Greco (Roma. 1966); M. Guglielminetti (Torino. 1967); N. Borsellino in his Commedie del Cinquecento (Milano, 1967): It is this last edition, generally considered the most authoritative, that we used as the foundation tor our translation.
The main problems we laced in translating Caro were: clarity, especially in the stage directions almost completely missing in the original: the rendering of puns and double entrendres; the linguistic consistency of the characters. To eliminate potential confusion we decided to add such indications as asides and related stage directions where we believed them to be indispensable. In translating puns and double entendres we tried to preserve the spirit and verve of the original by searching for meaningful equivalents, offering literal translations in the end notes. A very few expressions were rendered literally in the text in order to preserve the original colour; explanations for these also appear in the notes. Since some of the major characters change levels of speech throughout the play, we were faced with the problem of remaining faithful to the original while trying to give consistency to the language of those characters. Once again we decided to remain faithful to the original.
Throughout, we employed contemporary idiomatic English, though something of the rambling conversational qualities of the original are preserved in imitative syntax. Certain sentences in the original text are complex and pretentious; we tried to reflect these qualities without resorting to merely verbatim renderings. We have sought to avoid a dry, strictly literal translation. At the same time, we have avoided making any special concessions in order to render the play more theatrical than it is already. In fact. Caro's play in its design and language is highly theatrical, and it was written specifically for the stage. Our only desire was to bring out, in our translation, the theatricality of the original.
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