‘Harry Potter’ Now Available in Yiddish

a book with light coming out next to a lit candle
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By Gabe Friedman / JTA

As of Feb. 7, the first book in the Harry Potter series is available in Yiddish.

“Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” was released in Yiddish by the Swedish publisher Olniansky Tekst Farlag on Feb. 7. (Yiddish is an official language in Sweden.)

It was translated by Arun Viswanath, 29, the son of an Indian-American father and Gitl Schaechter-Viswanath author of the “Comprehensive English-Yiddish Dictionary.” Her father was a professor of Yiddish at Columbia University.

Yair Rosenberg chronicles the story behind the translation in Tablet — from how Viswanath renamed Quidditch as the equivalent of “shoot-broom” to how he felt about the book’s goblins, which some have called anti-Semitic.

This article originally appeared on JTA.org.


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