Asterix in Cypriot Greek
The Cypriot dialect or Cypriot Greek (in Greek: Κρητική διάλεκτος) retains traces of Ancient Greek in its vocabulary, morphology and pronunciation. It is spoken by more than half a million people in Cyprus and by several hundred thousand people abroad, and, in the space of one album, has become an official Asterix language! And if I tell you that this album is none other than Asterix at the Olympic Games, don’t be surprised to find in this translation bits of dialogue as you would have heard in 50 B.C., back in Asterix’s time.
For any Asterix fan, Greece ranks among some of the most beautiful sketches ever drawn by Albert Uderzo. Representations of some of the most renowned monuments from Classical antiquity – Piraeus, the Acropolis (“Who is this Thea Cropolis?” asks Obelix), the Temple of Athena Nike, Olympia and the stadium, the Parthenon, the statue of goddess Athena, etc. – all leave an indelible impression. You’d think you were there – it’s a simple as that!
For Asterix and friends, Greece is a country whose people can be easily recognized by their noses, an elongated version of the “big noses” that Goscinny and Uderzo’s Gaulish characters all sport… The famous “Greek profile” makes our dear friend Obelix laugh...
Even more surprising, all the Greeks seem to be cousins of Diabetes, the guide who shows our heroes through the streets of Athens. These Greeks are crazy!
To be perfectly honest, for our band of merry men who have joined the Gallo-Roman team taking part in the Olympic Games, Greece is first and foremost the country of great memories: Asterix’s great sporting victory, boisterous dancing by the doyen Geriatrix, and the gargantuan meals devoured by Obelix. While flying over Athens on his magic carpet in Asterix and the Magic Carpet, our favourite Gourmand waxes lyrical as he remembers these extraordinary feasts. As for René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo, they too make an appearance in Greece as caricatures on a sculpted mural in Asterix at the Olympic Games!
For nearly forty years, inhabitants of the Asterix Village and Greek readers have shared many happy memories: Asterix albums are very widely read in the Hellenic Republic - a newspaper bearing Asterix’s name was even created in the 1960s!
Today, Asterix is an institution in Greece, whose albums by René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo are translated into 5 languages and dialects: Greek, Ancient Greek, Cretan Greek, Pontic Greek and Cypriot Greek. Asterix albums can thus be read by a large number of people directly descended from the athletes parading in the Asterix at the Olympic Games stadium: Thermopylae, the inhabitants of Samothrace, Milos, Kythira, Marathon and Macedonia as well as Spartans and a colossus from Rhodes (the famous Neuroses).
Discover the website of the publisher of Asterix albums in Greece.
You can see all the Asterix albums in Cypriot Greek in our Asterix albums translation exchange