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A word, perhaps, is necessary in the way of definition of translation. In this list I have aimed to include only such works as profess to be English renderings of Greek writings. In some cases, chiefly before 1700, the English translation was made from a French, Italian, or Latin version of the Greek original. So far as possible, such instances have been noted. I have not included adaptations, paraphrases, and the like; nor have I attempted to record solitary translations of excerpts from Greek literature. A book of translations in the literal sense of the word has been my oasis for entering a title in the following list.
The author would be the last one to claim infallibility for this list. One has but to attempt to gather together any considerable number of titles on a given subject to come to a realization of the difficulties of the work. "Here a little and there a little" is a true text in any such undertaking; and two translations in a bushel of books is no rare occurrence. I have listed the facts as I have been able to gather them; but I dare not vouch that in all cases they are complete. I hope some of the more elusive ones will be added at some future time.
The contents of the two introductory sections sum up certain ideas which have occurred to me as I have been working over this material. The sections are intended to suggest rather than to solve the problems which English translation from the Greek presents. A discussion of the introduction of the literature of one nation into that of another by means of translation is not new; but a discussion of such translations as forming a continuous thread of influence is perhaps slightly different from any hitherto set forth. A series of studies of translations into English from various literatures might add something to our present understanding of literary influences. If this book furnishes the basis for some such study of the interrelations between