2. This gentleman’s article
is a good one, as articles go in French. (They always tangle
up everything so that when you start into a sentence
you never know whether you are going to come out alive or not!) It is a very good article
, and the writer says all manner of kind things about me. I thank him with all my heart
. But, then why should he go and spoil
all his praise
3. What I mean
is this: he says my Jumping Frog is a funny story, but still, he can’t see why it should ever make anyone roll on the floor with laughter. Then, he translates it into French in order to prove
to his nation
that there is nothing so very funny about it. There is where my complaint
lies. He has not translated it at all. He has simply mixed it all up; it is no more like The Jumping Frog when he gets through
with it than I am like the man in the moon.
4. But my just saying so is not proof
. So I print here the French version
, that all may see that I do not speak falsely. Also, so those who don’t know French may understand
my pain, I have retranslated it back into English.
5. And to tell the truth, I have worn myself out at it. I have hardly rested from my work for five days and nights. I cannot speak the French language
, but I can translate
very well, though not fast.
6. I ask the reader to run his eye over the original
of the Jumping Frog, and then read the French or my re-translation. Kindly take notice
of how the Frenchman has messed up the grammar
. I think it is the worst I ever saw, and yet the French are called a polished nation
. If I had a boy that put sentences together as they do, I would polish him, too.