[ModLib] Dostoyevsky spelling.

JOSEPH HILL goodbooks at webtv.net
Fri Aug 15 16:32:11 EDT 2008

I did not need this email just now...


-----Original Message-----
From: Morgan, Martha G
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2008 1:24 PM
To: For collectors of Modern Library books, zebradlj at yahoo.com
Subject: RE: [ModLib] Dostoyevsky spelling.


What's in a name?
Or how do I pronounce and spell

The simple answer, of course, is given above, spell it in Russian!!!

That's fine for the more than 250 million people who know Russian. The problems arise for the rest of us. There are several transliteration systems-ways in which you can convert Cyrrilic (Russian) characters into English ones. Some are based primarily on letters, other systems pay more attention to sound.

Almost everyone agrees on the beginning of the name, but there are two middles and four endings.
 Dosto   evsk    y
           yevsk   iy

That makes for eight spellings not including variations in other languages:

Dostoevsky, Dostoevski, Dostoevskij, Dostoevskii

Dostoyevsky, Dostoyevski, Dostoyevskij, Dostoyevskii.

I have used here what seems to be the prevailing English form: Dostoevsky.

An approximate pronunciation of the Russian is [dastaYEfskee]

    * Dostoevsky's first name in Russian is Fyodor, F?dor, the Russian variant of Theodore-"gift of God" and his patronymic-the name taken his father's first name- is Mikhailovich (son of Mikhail).

From: modlib-bounces at owu.edu [modlib-bounces at owu.edu] On Behalf Of Scot Kamins [kamins at modernlib.com]
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2008 3:09 PM
To: zebradlj at yahoo.com; For collectors of Modern Library books
Subject: Re: [ModLib] Dostoyevsky spelling.

On Aug 15, 2008, at 12:51 PM, Darrell Johnson wrote:

I think this may have been discussed a while back. I have some copies of Dostoyevsky titles with the "y" dropped out of his name - Dostoevsky. Was this on purpose or an accident.  I know very early on his first name was transliterated Fiodor instead of Fyodor.  Perhaps for a while they thought dropping the "y" was a more accurate transliteration of Dostoyevsky.

The ML often ignored such niceties as spelling. For example, see the note on [T]chekov's Rothschild's Fiddle


Also specifically for Dostoyevsky, see the archives:  http://tinyurl.com/5n32h4

Scot Kamins
Over 50? Thousands of discounts for you
at http://www.SeasonedSpender.com

ModLib mailing list
ModLib at owu.edu

More information about the ModLib mailing list