Patricia Crampton: the Life of a Literary Translator

Event Report

Thank you to the 40 people who attended our Zoom talk about inspiring literary translator Patricia Crampton.

We were honoured to welcome Patricia’s son, Daniel Crampton, who gave us a further insight into the life of this courageous woman with a fierce intellect and a real flair for languages.

Josephine Murray incorporated into her talk two recordings made by the Imperial War Museum of Patricia Crampton speaking about her experiences; of translating at the Nuremberg War Trials, when she was just 21, and when a Nazi plane shot at her outside Beaconsfield Post Office!

We ended with questions which were answered by Josephine and by Daniel Crampton.

Here is some of the feedback we received from the event:

"Thank-you so much for such a fascinating talk! I had to write to let you know that I don’t know when I last enjoyed a talk - or the subject - so much. It was an incredible story about a remarkable woman, and a truly memorable snapshot of a hugely influential time in history."

“Thank you very much for a very interesting talk about P Crampton. I feel informed, moved and inspired. I will order a couple of books straight away. I am amazed how many of the books she translated I know and love.”


Join the Gloucestershire Network on Zoom for a talk by Gloucestershire member Josephine Murray about literary translator Patricia Crampton (1925 - 2016).

Patricia's first job after graduating from Oxford was translating documents at the Nuremberg War Trials. She later translated more than 200 books for children, and 50 for adults, including the Miffy the rabbit books. She worked in several languages, such as French, German, Spanish, Norwegian and Dutch, and won several awards. She was involved with many translators' organisations and successfully campaigned for better remuneration and recognition for translators.

The talk will incorporate extracts from one of 34 letters Patricia wrote to her parents while she was in Nuremberg, which were recently donated to the British Archive for Contemporary Writing, part of UEA Archives, in which she spoke about the horrors she was translating, as well as her experiences of travelling around beautiful German cities. The talk will also include audio clips from recorded interviews with Patricia made by the Imperial War Museum in 1997.

The talk will take place at 5pm UK time on Sunday 31 January 2021.

Please email gloucestershire@ciol.org.uk to book your place. You will receive the Zoom link nearer the time.

January 31st, 2021 5:00 PM   to   6:00 PM
Online event (Zoom)
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Category Gloucestershire Network
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