Synopses & Reviews
Baudelaires prose poems were written over many years and published in magazines between 1855 and his death in 1867. Francis Scarfes translations reflect a lifetimes passion for Baudelaires work and a deep understanding of it. The appeal of this beautiful book, he says in his introduction, lies in its wide range of subjects, its variations of tone and mood, its great variety of presentation and above all in its psychological subtleties. It shows the poet at the height of his powers, totally uninhibited in his expression of wonder, tenderness and compassion. Francis Scarfe has appended an early prose extravaganza, the delightful short novel La Fanfarlo (1847), which has much in common with the poems.
The companion volume, The Complete Verse, contains all Baudelaires poetry in verse, from Les Fleurs du mal (1861) to his occasional poems and translations.
Francis Scarfe (1911-1986) was a lecturer in French poetry at Glasgow University before and again after World War II. From 1959 to 1978, he was director of the British Institute in Paris. For his work on Baudelaire he was awarded the Prix de LÎle Saint-Louis (1966). On retirement he was made a Chevalier de la Légion dhonneur. He was the author of four collections of poetry, a verse translation of selected fables of La Fontaine, and the critical works Auden and After and André Chénier, His Life and Work.
This new edition of The Poems in Prose carries Francis Scarfe's version of Charles Baudelaire's working title, Le Spleen de Paris. Here are his brilliant prose vignettes, together with the early novella La Fanfarlo, which has many connections with the poems. The translations face the French and can be enjoyed independently.
The companion volume to The Complete Verse gives the rest of Baudelaires poetry; brilliant vignettes and sketches by the master-poet.
About the Author
Charles Baudelaire: Baudelaire (1821-1867) was France's most influential nineteenth-century poet. He was also a brilliant critic. A controversial figure in his lifetime, his collection of poems Les Fleurs du mal (Flowers of Evil) is regarded as a masterpiece.
Francis Scarfe: Francis Scarfe (1911-1986) was a lecturer in French poetry at Glasgow University before and again after World War II. From 1959 to 1978, he was director of the British Institute. In recognition of his contribution to Anglo-French cultural relations he was made a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres (1962), and for his work on Baudelaire he was awarded the Prix de L'Ile Saint-Louis (1966); on his retirement in 1978 he was made a Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur. He was the author of four collections of poetry and of the critical works Auden and After and André Chénier, His Life and Work.