Sense and Seussability: How the Grinch and the Cat Brought Us Money and Fame

December 2001
by Marie Bolchazy

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My husband and I own an academic publishing house, one devoted to Latin and ancient Greek. Our authors include Vergil, Cicero, Caesar, Euripides, Aeschylus… and Dr. Seuss!

One of the goals of our company, Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, is to popularize Latin. Publishing Latin translations of Dr. Seuss titles gives us an opportunity to inform the general public that Latin lives.

We selected How the Grinch Stole Christmas to be our first Seuss publication. Getting the rights to publish a Latin version was our first challenge. Fortunately for us, Random House hadn’t sewn up Latin language rights. We, of course, needed approval then from Seuss Enterprises on everything, beginning with the choice of translator right down to every ad produced. Another challenge was finding the right translators. Given the fact that we are an academic press, the Latin in our books has to be excellent; it must pass peer review. Generally, a translator should be a native speaker of the end language. Well, there are no native speakers of Latin left. We did, however, know a husband and wife team of neo-Latinists. The Drs. Tunberg conduct workshops every year in which the participants speak only Latin for a full week. It took us a while to convince them to do the translation.

Finally, in 1998, in time to meet the holiday season, we published Quomodo Invidiosulus nomine Grinchus Christi Natalem Abrogaverit (How the cantankerous individual named Grinch stole the birt…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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