Re: "The Book", woooo hoooo...

David Thomas

Not being able to get hold of a copy of The Book in English, I finally managed to find a copy of the 1993 French language edition (actually published in Belgium) and am pleased to report that the quality of reproduction is excellent. It is based on the Kalmbach  editions and I can't detect any difference in the picture quality.
It was translated and published, by agreement, by Jacques le Plat, a deservedly well known Belgian modeller whose own large Ferbach layout, about which he has written numerous articles, was set in French Alsace. Having had some of my own articles published in French translation I've been in touch with Jacques who knew Linn Westcott. He made the interesting point that translating such a book requires not only good linguistic skills, including the specialist languages of rairoads, but a knowledge of and sympathy with the subject.

It was also quite fun to see the seven eastbound trains in timetable no 2. referred to as SENS PAIR (even) and the seven westbounds as SENS IMPAIR (odd). In France "even" trains are normally toward Paris and "odd" away from Paris (rather as British UP trains are normally towards London and DOWN trains from London) 
(Off Topic:  but the London Underground still reveals the financial origins of the first "tube" (deep level) lines by using some distinctly American terminology with westbound (et al) trains made up of cars that used to be driven by motormen.

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