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No. 409, April 4, 2010

Another One Bites the Dust

By Don Hobbs

In the world of foreign language collecting of Sherlock Holmes, things are not always, as they appear. I learned long ago not to get too excited about a new discovery. I have been disappointed on more than once. I have also discovered that patience is a grand virtue to possess. A prime example of this was the four-plus year wait before I finally secure my Macedonian translation. I found the translator’s name, Tomo Momirovski, when I was searching the Macedonian Translator’s Union website. There was a postal address for Mr. Momirovski that I wrote to asking if he was the translator of Avanturite na Šerlok Holms published in 1961 (DW-C3516). I was shocked when I received an email message from him about a month later.

Mr. Momirovski was so pleased that someone still remembered his efforts in translating Sherlock Holmes during his college days at Skopje University. He was saddened with the fact that he did not own a copy of his translation but assured me he would find a copy. He said a Macedonian never forgets. Thus began a four-plus year saga that finally ended with the book’s arrival where it now proudly sits in my library. I am currently in the midst of another effort to secure copies of the Tamil magazine Manjari.

In 2007, Peter Blau sent me a message about a Tamil translation of “The Adventures of the Red-Headed League” published in two-parts, in a magazine called Manjari. I was able to track down and contact the translator. He promised to send me copies of the January and February 2007 issues. His promises kept coming but the magazines never arrived. It has been over three years and the translator stopped answering my emails about a year ago when I continued to press him about sending the promised magazines. My patience on this one is wearing thin but I am quite ready to write it off as a failure.

This brings me to today’s news. Back in January, I had a message from Total Kannada that they had located several Kannada translation of Sherlock Holmes. De Waal uses the alternative name Kanarese for Kannada. For a complete listing, see Ethnologue ( This is the official language of the India state of Karnataka with more than 35,000,000 speakers. In January, they told me they would be sending the books, but they never arrived. Since January, all of my email messages have gone unanswered until last night. I received an apology from Total Kannada and they told me they had moved and would be sending my order on Monday. I will keep my excitement at bay until the books are in my hand. When and if they do actually arrive, they will be the eighty-second language in my collection, leaving just five to complete having every known language with Canonical translations.

I shall be patient a bit long.

Happy Collecting!!


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Past 2009 Columns

January 3, 2010
Happy New Year! A Sherlockian Potpourri

January 10, 2010
Sherlockian Nirvana

January 17, 2010
Sherlocking in New York City 2010

January 24, 2010
The Forgetful Sherlockian

January 31, 2010
Barcelona October 2010

February 7, 2010
Sherlocking in Southern California

February 14, 2010
Sherlocking in the Sun

February 21, 2010
The Don Hobbs Olympics

February 28, 2010
Sherlockian Potpourri

March 6, 2010
Six Degrees of Sherlockian Separation

March 14, 2010
Lake Sherlockbegon Revisited

March 21, 2010

March 28, 2010
Spring At Last

April 10, 2010
Another One Bites The Dust