Medical translators and the idea of translation in Portugal in the late eighteenth century: the case of books on medicine

Cláudio DeNipoti About the author


This study demonstrates how translations into Portuguese influenced the publishing market in the late eighteenth century and sheds light on the establishment of standard Portuguese. Focusing specifically on medical texts translated into Portuguese from published works or manuscripts between 1770 and 1810, the translators’ - and occasionally the editors’ - paratexts in the translated books on medicine and pharmacy are investigated and cross-referenced against reports written by the censors on the same works, themselves physicians appointed by the censorship bodies or physicians/censors, in a bid to seek out answers, however incomplete they may be, to questions about the circulation of the printed word, the spread of scientific knowledge, and the debates concerning the definition of the Portuguese language.

translation; medicine; eighteenth century; history of the written word; Portuguese empire

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