Friday, November 11, 2005

A Story from 宇治拾遺物語 (Part 1)

是も今は昔、比叡の山に児ありけり。僧たち、宵のつれづれに、 「いざ、かいもちひせん。」と言ひけるを、この児、心寄せに聞き けり。さりとて、しいださんを待ちて寝ざらんも、わろかりなんと思ひて、片方に寄りて、寝たるよしにて、いで来るを待ちけるに、すでにしいだしたるさまに て、ひしめき合ひたり。

This one happened long ago too. There was a boy acolyte on Mount Hiei. In the dullness of the evening, this acolyte would hear with pleasure the monks' saying "Hey, let's make some red-bean rice cakes!" So, thinking it would be bad to wait for them to be ready without going to sleep, he went off to a corner to pretend like he was asleep as he waited. Soon it seemed that the cakes were done, and there was a ruckus.
I know there are some problems in this translation. I am not sure what なん is doing in わろかりなんと思ひて, for example--is it a rentaikei of ぬ followed by an abbreviated む? And what should I do with 心寄せに? And the last sentence is so long I think it has to be broken up in the English, especially since it has しいださん, いで来る, and しいだしたる. That gets really monotonous in English. You can either write "finished" three times or indulge in some egegious use of elegant variation.

I will put the rest of this up when I, um, figure it out. (That's the passage that inspired my dream.) In the meantime, feedback would be appreciated.

11 comments:

Azuma said...

I think it's pretty accurate. Good work!

I believe the なん is short for なむ, not the なむ that means してほしい (which needs the mizenkei), but the なむ for emphasis that requires a final rentaikei as a kakari-zyosi. I guess here the need for a rentaikei anyway before the に in 待ちけるに just happens to coincide nicely with this. Though I *think* other grammatical requirements usually trump kakari-zyosi changes when the clause ends before the end of a sentence.

心寄せ seems to mean something like "a turning of the heart towards something" (and thus by extension even "favor, love") (広辞苑) Perhaps "with interest" would capture the flavor.

A question: 「ひせん」? Does that come from 火 + す, as in, "to fire, to cook"? It has to be the mizenkei with む, and I can't find a ひす shimonidan verb in 広辞苑, though す would do as well for せ in the mizenkei. I really need to break down and buy a kogo dictionary if I'm going to keep up translating, and not, um, fudge the words I can make some sort of sense out of while reading.

amida said...

Thanks for your comments! なむ is a good call, and I think you are right about the other requirements trumping the kakarijoshi. (Though I wonder if it is because of the proximity, just like we'd say "If he or they go.")

One problem with the 心寄せ is that in English we can say "listen" or "hear"-- one is volitional and one is passive. It would be a little odd to say he (passively) heard something with interest, but on the other hand, how could he "listen" to something spontaneous like someone saying one sentence? This is why translation is an art and not a science. Maybe I should be a little looser and say something like "when he heard XXX, it piqued his interest" or something like that.

The ひ should be part of the かいもちひ. Here's a case where the elongated vowel shortened over time rather than vice versa. This is the killer thing about CJ for me-- I have to look up everything in the dictionary, and most of the time I don't know what form to look it up in.

Part 2 is up-- yoroshiku!

Matt said...

Hmm, I think that Amida was right, it's simpler to assume that this なむ (なん) is the intensifying one that's the izenkei of ぬ(完了)+ shuushi/shuushikei of the jodoshi む. That just attaches to the renkyoukei (which わろかり is, obviously) and doesn't need any kakarijoshi or anything. Corresponds to modern たぶん(きっと)…だろう or something like that, which makes sense in context too.

But on the other hand that would make what the boy thinks shuushikei, and so wouldn't it the modern editor have punctuated it with its own quotation marks like what the monks say? Hmm..

amida said...

Matt: The editor might have left out the quotation marks because it's a thought rather than actual speech. As you know, punctuation can be rather arbitrary.

Also, I pulled this off the web somewhere because I was too lazy to type it in, and I did some editing of my own to make it consistent with my paper copy. I might have missed something or made it inconsistent.

Could the shuushikei be because there is a て following, and there is an action based on that thought? I don't have my Big Charts handy, but doesn't て take a shuushikei?

Matt said...

Nah, て just takes renyoukei (if we're thinking of the same て!). But I think shuushikei here makes sense if you think of the thought as a complete sentence (わろかりなむ。) followed by the と, which seems to be what they've done with the monks' dialogue.. that's why the difference bugs me, although like you said it could just be because one's speech and one's a thought.

Azuma said...

Matt: On second thought, you're right, it can't be that なむ. I mostly ruled out the ぬ because it didn't seem likely an adjective would lake a marker for completion, but I forgot the intensive meaning ぬ can have.

Also, I now realize(d'oh!), though the kakarijoshi なむ can come after various kinds of words, it wouldn't drive わろし into 連用形.

I don't think the editing is really a problem. They probably assumed it was thought, not spoken, which makes sense.

Matt said...

Also, the -kari adjective form is a corruption of -ku ari, so in a way it IS a verb. Anything goes!

Azuma said...

You learn something new every day. If that's the sort of delightful etymological information you can find in your Iwanami dictionary, I really do need to buy it.

Though I wonder, that being the origin, why there isn't an acceptable alternative shuushikei ending in "kari", to parallel "ari"? I guess not everything can be consistent.

amida said...

My Big Chart has a shuushikei for -kari, but it's in parentheses. I'm not sure what that means.

Matt said...

Interesting! My Big Chart doesn't even have a -kari shuushikei ending in parentheses. It goes: (ku)/kara, ku/kari, shi, ki/karu, kere, kare.

Gabi Greve said...

Thanks for your good work!
I checked about CHIGO when I came to your site.
Here is a bit on the
CHIGO and HAIKU!


my sweet home
among cherry blossoms !
namu amida butsu


Gabi's Haiku Gallery

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