The Violet, Day 22

Director. This is why I appeal to you.

Ilonka. Of course this is why! Because of your job, because you are the sort of poor man who goes to work on foot.

Director. I haven’t an iron fillér to my name. I can’t support my own self on my wages.

Ilonka. I will give you money, if I must.

Director. Thank you, my dear, I have not come to that. Very well, let us say, let us say it is only natural that you should appeal to me …

Ilonka. Ah, happiness!

Director. Pardon. We are only supposing.

Ilonka. I know, you dear, what it means when we are already supposing!

Director. You’re very conceited, dear girl, but wait, you will yet become humbler.

Ilonka. I could not be humbler than when I chose you.

A page today. The words seem to be sucking less, but I put off getting started so long that I really can’t keep going. Some really incomprehensible dialogue was made more comprehensible when I figured out Ilonka was ending words with “ér” which ought to have ended “ért”. I hope I’ll get at least a few pages done tomorrow.

“I haven’t an iron fillér to my name” was originally just “I don’t have an iron”, where “iron” is standing in for “thing made of iron” (and not “clothes iron”, which would be a different word altogether). It seems like a pretty safe assumption that he means an iron coin, and fillér is plausible, but I really should check Wikipedia or some other source to find out what Hungarian or Austrian coins from 1920 or earlier were made of iron. I like the sound of “iron fillér, though, and I think this is a good example of when to throw in a Hungarian word for flavor. It should be obvious from context that a fillér is a coin, and it’s a good reminder of where the story is set. I would absolutely not substitute “brass farthing”.

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