|I know I need to stop doing this . . .|
You will recall that Richard Dawkins believes the Book of Mormon is a fraud because of its archaic English. Specifically, Mr. Dawkins believes, “[The Book of Mormon is] a 19th century book written in 16th century English. That’s not the way people talked in the 19th century – it’s a fake. So it’s not beautiful, it’s a work of charlatanry.” In response to Mr. Dawkins I wrote a series of blog posts explaining why this actually isn’t such a big deal (see here, here, here, and here).
Imagine my delight and surprise when I ran across H. A. J. Munro’s translation of Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things (De rerum natura), a first-century BC philosophical-poetic discourse written in Latin. Munro’s translation appears to have first been published in 1908, and was republished in the 1940 anthology The Stoic and Epicurean Philosophers. Here are the opening lines.
But always remember that whenever Joseph Smith renders a translation in deliberately archaic English, he is to be branded a fraud and charlatan.
: H. A. J. Munro, “On the Nature of Things,” in The Stoic and Epicurean Philosophers, ed. Whitney J. Oates (New York: The Modern Library, 1940), 69–219.