Articlus stupidium

Wednesday 5 January 2005

Inspired by the British Museum’s publishing coup in printing The Tale of Peter Rabbit in hieroglyphs – the perfect tale for busy mummies who want to unwind with a nice story about bunnies after a hard day punching holes in the chests of character actors and overwhelming the world with an army of the undead – I am now working on translating Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix into cuneiform.
This is no easy task, even after successfully neogtiating the rights with J.K. Rowling’s publishers and several earthmoving contractors. There are the difficulties of finding equivalent terms relating to an anachronistic British boarding school that will make sense to the average Babylonian, how to translate all the cod Latin into an even more ancient context and, most of all, how to live with myself as a fully-grown adult ploughing through a children’s book only slightly shorter than the collected works of Jane Austen.
The new edition should hit the streets in time for next Christmas, and is expected to take up about 12,000 clay tablets. Customers are advised to pre-order to avoid disappointment, and to hire a truck to take it home. Please take care not to drop a page, or get it wet: tablets will not be sold separately. For vision-impaired Sumerians, a large print edition is in preparation.
  1. I heard about translating Peter Rabbit into heiroglyphics. Talk about people having too much time on their hands! I assume the next budget, in which all grants will be slashed, will be presented to them in heiroglyphs as well.

  2. The sad thing is, they probably did it on their tea breaks. And the museum retains copyright.