Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0004904, Sat, 18 Mar 2000 08:53:57 -0800

Re: Query: Spanish translation of _The Gift_ (fwd)
Well, I don't think the "present" side of "gift" is needed as much as the
"talent" side in this case. But even then, "don" does carry both meanings
with reasonable comfort. Peripheral relations to rivers, mafias or forms of
address do little justify opting for that silly "dádiva". They really should
change this next time they print the book.

Francisco González

Of course!!!! "Don" could fit well. It means gift and talent at the same
time. But...there are problems:
Problem#1=the "gift" side of the meaning is pretty obscure. Today,
almost nobody uses "don" as "gift". We use "regalo", though in the past,
four centuries ago, it was common. Now, I can only remember an
application in this sense: "Los Dones de la Providencia", wich means
"The gifts of the Providence".
Problem#2="El Don", would suggest something different to the writers.
Maybe a book on the Mafia. Or maybe a reference to the Russian river
(very plausible).

Well, I agree that La Dadiva is an awful title for a wonderful book. But
I can not imagine a solution.