Lia Wyler


Brazilian translator Lia Wyler was born on October 6, 1934, in Ourinhos, in the State of São Paulo and died on December 11, 2018.

She translated books since 1969.

Lia Wyler translations include books by English-language authors such as Henry Miller, Joyce Carol Oates, Margaret Atwood, Gore Vidal, Tom Wolfe, Sylvia Plath, Stephen King, and many others.

But, it was the translator of the Harry Potter series that Wyler has become most well-known.

Lia Wyler has been praised by the series author, J.K. Rowling, for daring to take on the challenging task of translating personal names to Portuguese. “Bob Odgen,” for example, in the sixth book, became “Beto Odgen”: “Bob” is a nickname for the English name “Robert,” which has the Portuguese equivalent of “Roberto,” for which “Beto” is a nickname.

A choosen few Brazilian slang were also incorporated into the translation: “Crookshanks” (literally “bent legs”) became Bichento (a word which means “twisted legs” in the Brazilian Northeast).

Lia Wyler also created original versions of names created by the author, such as “Quadribol,” (Quidditch), “Trouxas” (Muggles), and the names of the four houses of Hogwarts: “Sonserina”, “Grifinória”, “Lufa-lufa” e “Corvinal” (Slytherin, Gryffindor, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw).

She graduated with a degree in Literature at PUC-Rio and received her Masters in Communications at Eco-UFRJ, where her thesis was entitled “Translation in Brazil.”

Wyler was also the author of the initial history of translation in Brazil, “Línguas, poets e bacharéis”, (“Languages, Poets, and Scholars”), and she was the president of the National Union of Translators from 1991 to 1993.

Lia Wyler passed away at 84 years old, in Rio de Janeiro.


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