For some reason you are interested in the Russian language. Most probably you are learning Russian or are involved in business with Russia. You need to get some of your letters/e-mails/books or just thoughts translated into the best possible version of Tolstoy’s and Dostoevsky’s language. You are eager to understand and be understood. Too many crucial things depend on it. The quality is of the highest priority. And it should be done as soon as possible, preferably yesterday.
Good news! You are on the right track.
I have been translating from & into Russian for well over 30 years – both privately and publicly, meaning some clients entrusted me with their personal correspondence (at some point I even translated rather complicated letters on theoretical physics addressed to Stephen Hawking) while others, say, Russian publishing houses preferred to offer my humble works for sale. The latter are currently available worldwide via Amazon et al.
In 1991 I graduated from Moscow State University (linguistics). Here is my soviet diploma, confirming that I am a qualified translator and teacher, although the main subject of my studies was actually Danish.
English was my second foreign language. Or third. Or forth. It doesn’t matter now as I started translating from English into Russian around 1985 – first for myself and my friends and later, well, for money, of course.
Sun of the sleepless!
Sun of the sleepless! melancholy star!
Whose tearful beam glows tremulously far,
That show'st the darkness thou canst not dispel,
How like art thou to joy remember'd well!
So gleams the past, the light of other days,
Which shines, but warms not with its powerless rays;
A night-beam Sorrow watcheth to behold,
Distinct but distant - clear - but, oh how cold!
Ночей бессонных томная звезда,
Чей слабый свет слезой бежит сюда,
Рассеять тщетно силясь мрак густой!
Как ты печальна радостью былой!
Так прошлого забытый луч мерцает:
Он только светит, но не согревает.
Звезда во мгле отчетливо видна,
Но далека, чиста – но холодна…
Your guess is right – it is by Lord Byron. Translated when I was 19, I think. Or:
Poor soul, the centre of my sinful earth,
My sinful earth these rebel powers array,
Why dost thou pine within and suffer dearth,
Painting thy outward walls so costly gay?
Why so large cost, having so short a lease,
Dost thou upon thy fading mansion spend?
Shall worms, inheritors of this excess,
Eat up thy charge? is this thy body's end?
Then soul live thou upon thy servant's loss,
And let that pine to aggravate thy store;
Buy terms divine in selling hours of dross;
Within be fed, without be rich no more.
So shall thou feed on Death, that feeds on men,
And Death once dead, there's no more dying then.
Несчастный дух, в земле сокрытый грешной,
Что полнится избытком дерзких сил,
Зачем нуждой томишься, безутешный,
А дом снаружи свой позолотил?
К чему ты платишь столь большую цену
За сей дворец, чей смертный час грядет?
Червя наследство, он не минет тлена,
Когда конец извечный обретет.
Живи же тем, что твой слуга с презреньем
Забыл. Его к страданьям понуждай,
Раздай весь хлам, взамен найдя спасенье,
И не снаружи, но внутри сияй.
Так, утоляя плотью Смерти голод,
Ты избежишь навек могильный холод.
Yes, that is from Shakespeare or should I say from Francis Bacon and his “good pens”? It doesn’t matter much now. Well, yes, it does in fact, as some of my published translations are devoted to the famous authorship question. See for example Mark Twain’s Is Shakespeare dead or my new translation of Hamlet with over 400 comments explaining the choice of words or the same Hamlet, but this time as the first ever Russian rhymed translation, or Romeo and Juliet.
My expertise has also been used by TV. Here you can see and hear some of the videos I translated into Russian just by listening to the originals as quite often on TV channels don’t have the original scripts.
Translation has always been my hobby, even when I was bringing home the bacon by wasting… sorry, spending my time as a brand manager and later as a marketing director for some international and Russian corporations. In 2001 I even got a certificate from Dowling College, NY, confirming my MBA degree in management.
Since 2009 I have been mainly earning a living by English tutoring, writing and translating, which I find much more enjoyable and gratifying.
Last but not least. If you worry about prices, don’t – we will definitely find something affordable for both of us.
Take care and let me know your needs.
Remaining you key to good Russian,