Help with Howl: Rugby, Welshisms and saucepans

Ian Riddell iwriddell at
Wed Mar 16 12:18:23 EST 2005

I've enjoyed this discussion of all things Welsh, but what I'm finding 
really fascinating is the right-justified text in these e-mails, 
especially the end-of-sentence punctuation being at the left end of the 
final line of each sentence. I'm assuming, Gili, that this has to do 
with Hebrew being written from right to left . . .

(this is not a criticism at all, just the result of my looking at it 
and saying, "That's odd." and then realizing why it might be that way 
and then thinking "That's cool!")


On Mar 16, 2005, at 6:46 AM, Gili Bar-Hillel wrote:

> A barrage of question to assist me in my translation of "Howl's Moving
> Castle":
> Thanks to this list I know a little about Calcifer's saucepan song, 
> but I
> don't know where the lyrics: "They think so much about me that they 
> always
> play without me" come into the Welsh folksong that was posted on this 
> list a
> couple of years ago. Are these alternate lyrics to the same song, sung 
> at
> Rugby matches? Or is it a different song altogether?
> What does "fly up the wing" mean, in Rugby?
> Are the Welsh known to be particularly musical, or just the opposite? 
> (Howl
> bemoans being born "an unmusical Welshman")
> Can someone elaborate on the origin of the phrase "welcome in the 
> valleys"?
> I gather this is somehow specific to Wales, but is there something to 
> it
> other than plain geography? Do the Welsh think of themselves as being
> particularly welcoming?
> "Cariad" = dearest or darling in Welsh?
> Is Howell a particularly Welsh name?
> Many thanks for all information and insights you might provide.
> I'm almost done translating and am now proofing and improving. I'm 
> quite
> pleased with the way the John Donne poem worked out, that was VERY 
> tricky,
> but I pretty much managed to keep the rhymes as well as the wordplay 
> (in
> Hebrew, Neil thinks it's about a bicycle). I've been told that the 
> cover
> will be designed by the same Israeli artist who did artwork for Philip
> Pullman's trilogy which was recently published here. Here are links to 
> his
> covers for His Dark Materials , I'm quite curious to see what he does 
> for
> Howl:
> Golden Compass
> Subtle Knife
> Amber Spyglass
> --
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Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's 
character, give him power.
Abraham Lincoln

Ian W. Riddell
iwriddell at
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