A fearless Gaul warrior and an adventurous teenage reporter are to start speaking Irish as their childhood favourite comics are translated into the language for the first time.
Asterix and Tintin have now been adapted and translated by professionals to appeal to the Irish speaking market, with Roman battling Asterix the Gaul now becoming Asterix the Gael.
Asterix, first published in 1961, has sold over 250 million albums worldwide in over 107 languages, with Irish being the latest.
An expert team have successfully converted classics Asterix the Gaul (1961) and Asterix and the Golden Sickle (1962) into Asterix na nGallach and Asterix agus an Corrán Óir respectively.
“We wanted Asterix, Obelix and their fellow Gauls to speak Irish like natives, but we’ve also been careful to make sure they’re well within the reach of readers whatever their grasp of the language,” says translator Antain Mac Lochlainn.
“We’ve got gags aplenty, and a couple of cracking stories!”
Famous quiff-wearing Tintin goes on an Egyptian adventure in Todóga na bhFarónna (Cigars of the Pharoah) and the team behind the translation wanted to ensure that the copy was as authentic as possible.
“We tend not to realise that Tintin was originally Belgian and spoke French. Our task was to make sure the Tintin of Ireland comes over as 100 per cent Irish,” said translator Gabriel Rosenstock.
Fans will be glad to hear that, although canine companion Snowy will not feature, the bumbling Thompson detectives are an integral part of the new comic and have been cleverly titled Seosamh Mac Grianna and Seosamh Ó Grianna to give it a uniquely Irish cultural twist.
Tintin predates Asterix, first published in 1932, and worldwide sales of his adventures have topped 200 million copies in over 50 languages.
The editions are being published by Dalen Eireann who are also responsible for translating the series into Welsh, Cornish, Scottish Gaelic and Scots.
Dalen publisher Alun Ceri Jones said: “Asterix and Tintin are both very iconic characters and it’s great to see the Irish titles joining in our other Celtic languages. Gabriel and Antain have done excellent work in adapting the books and making them totally relevant to Ireland – I’m sure readers old and new will agree!”
The Irish editions are available in both retail and online bookshops, or can be sought from the publisher’s website; www.daleneireann.com. They retail for £7.99 each.