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Poetry Translation Competitions

Tuesday 17 April 2018

“We had many interesting entries for the competitions from a dazzling array of languages, which bears witness to the cultural diversity of Christ’s Hospital but also it was good to see the willingness of the pupils to explore broadmindedly the cultures of the world we live in.” said Stephen Walsh, Head of English.

“Translating a poem is amazingly difficult as it needs both accuracy and creativity. In the juniors we had entries from languages such as Gaelic, Italian, Lallans Scots, kiSwahili, Tamil, Chinese and French, and in the intermediates translations from Turkish, Russian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish and Japanese. Amazing and impressive. Thank you to everyone who entered. Mr Hawkins, Mrs Reid, Mrs Mainwaring and Ms Cassidy formed a committee to judge the junior and intermediate translations.”

Chair of Judges, Mr Hawkins commented: “It was as always a difficult task picking winners and we were most impressed by the efforts made to capture tone, style and meaning and to provide a convincing and fresh voice in English. All who entered deserved praise and encouragement to take the challenge again next year.”

The results were:

In the junior competition, the committee picked as highly commended/ runner-up Amara McGeachie for an amazingly clever acrostic rendering of a Scots poem ‘To A Mouse’. However the poem chosen as winner was Hannah Jordan’s beautiful version of a Tamil song, ‘Our Displacement’.

The judges felt that the entries from the LE (Year 9) were so strong as to deserve an extra prize. The winner here was Tommy Worth for ‘Saturday in the Village’, translated from Italian.

In the intermediate competition, the judges chose Silvana Brasovean’s translation of a Romanian poem as highly commended/ runner up but the winning poem ‘Premature Baby’ was translated from the Russian by Katherine Linaker.


Congratulations to everyone who took part and we look forward to hearing the results of the senior competition later this term.


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