[Moscow]; [Leningrad]: Molodaya gvardiya, 1937. 433,  pp., 36 ill., portraits and maps: ill. 13.5x19.8 cm. Original cloth binding. Light soiling, two minor tears to the maps (1,3). Otherwise near fine.
Scarce. First edition. Translated from the original Norewegian language by the Soviet translator M. P. Dyakonova. Norwegian edition was published in 1913. This is the second Russian translation of Roald Amundsen’s South Pole.
In Russian print, the name of the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen (1872-1928) began to appear from the late-1900s. Russian readers were offered a chance to get acquainted with the first Russian translation of anything by Amundsen in 1908 (K severnomu magnitnomu polyusu i cherez Severo-zapadnyy prokhod [i.e. To the North-West Passage]). The present book, South Pole, was first translated into Russian by E. Aleksandrova in 1924, more than ten years after the original Norwegian publication. The second Russian translation of the work by M. Dyakonova came out in 1937 and marked a mysterious break in Amundsen’s Russian translations, which were not resumed until after 1959.
Published in 1937, the book reveals a few interesting instances of political censorship in translation. In the Russian edition, with rare exceptions, passages indicating messages and gratitude to the King and Queen of Norway are omitted. For example, Dyakonova chose to leave out the line ‘God preserve the King and Fatherland’ from her translation, though the phrase was present in both Norwegian and English editions (both 1913). It is also interesting to mention that the translator left a note regarding the author’s line ‘Breakfast was at eight, consisting of American hot cakes’ and stated that according to the photograph these were not American, but plain Russian pancakes. Compared to the original Norwegian edition, the translation lacks Amundsen’s dedication to his friends, the author’s brief summary of the expedition titled First Account, the Introduction by Fridtjof Nansen is replaced by the foreword of Russian scientist Vladimir Wiese (1886-1954), and the chapters The History of the South Pole, The Easter Sledge Journey by Lieutenant K. Prestrud, The Voyage of the Fram by First-Lieutenant Thorvald Ninsen, and two appendixes are omitted. Other sections are compressed into 6. Importantly, the Russian version includes 33 black-and-white illustrations, out of which only 11 are presented in the English edition.
Written by Roald Amundsen, this book offers a rare opportunity to trace the legendary journey of the author and fellow Norwegian explorers who became the first men in history to reach the South Pole. The narrative starts off with the detailed description of the preparatory process for the voyage, follows the Farm ship through its route (from Norway) and ends with the explorers’ arrival to Hobart. From daily entertainment activities to eating dogs, the book provides vivid insight into the lesser-know details of the triumphant expedition.
The edition includes 3 maps of the Bay of Whales, Antarctic region, and Antarctica for 1911 showing the previous south polar expeditions, as well as 33 black-and-white illustrations depicting Roald Amundsen, Fram, a seal on an ice floe, tent with a supply of meat, Lindstrom with hot pancakes, tents for dogs, expedition of R. Scott near the tents of Amundsen, Fram before leaving the barrier, a walk with the dog, etc.
No copies found in Worldcat.