15th Mar '12

Subject WHAT’S IN A NAME? MUNCLE IN TRANSLATION ...

ByTina



While Chicken House are busy at Bologna, The Scoop! takes a look at how ‘Muncle Trogg’ got the international treatment, and became ‘Mikrus Troglodycki’ …

Muncle Trogg’s author, Janet Foxley, thought long and hard to find a name fit for the tiny, titular giant. She wanted something rooted in fact, that sounded story-bookish and fun:

“Muncle Trogg's name comes from both Latin and Greek. Muncle is the middle bit of the Latin word ‘hoMUNCULus’, which means ‘little man’. I just changed the spelling a bit, to make it look more like an English word. Muncle’s family name ‘Trogg’ comes from the word ‘troglodyte’, someone who lives in a cave or den. ‘Troglodyte’ comes from the Greek word ‘τρωγλοδύτής’, which is formed from two words meaning ‘to get into’ and ‘a hole’. I doubled the G to make it feel more substantial and finished.”

When the Polish publisher of Muncle Trogg, Bukowy Las, translated the text they took just as much care over finding a name for the little guy:

“After long hours and days of hard thinking (between the translators, editors and myself) we decided to change the english ‘Muncle Trogg’ into the Polish ‘Mikrus Troglodycki’. And we hope he will be really happy with this!

‘Mikrus’ means ‘titch’, ‘shorty’, ‘tot’, but this word is colloquial rather than pejorative in the Polish language. It has ancient Greek origin (micros is ‘small’ in Greek language) and its etymology you can find in all words starting with micro: microcosm, microbe, microlab etc. So it means the same as ‘Muncle’ but sounds better in Polish.

In ‘Troglodycki’ we saved the etymology of ‘Trogg’ and added the typical Polish gentry ending ‘–cki’ to the english surname so ‘Muncle/Mikrus’ is of noble birth in Poland. Isn’t it awesome?”

Well, who knew there was so much in a name?

 

Picture © Steve Wells

 
 
 

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