The ‘Chroniques de Jersey’ in Translation

What was life in Jersey like in the 16th Century? The ‘Chroniques de Jersey’ covering the period 1460-1585 is Jersey’s oldest known history book, full of true tales of corruption and intrigue, religious zeal and piracy, bravery and kindness. Few people today seem to be aware of this extraordinary book but perhaps this is not surprising since it was written in Middle French and has been out of print for over 100 years. Bronwyn has translated ‘Chroniques de Jersey’ into English in a new parallel text edition due for publication later this year. In this session she will be relating some of those stories and talking about the challenges of translating the ‘Chroniques’ for 21st century readers.

Bronwyn Matthews was born in New Zealand and studied French at the University of Otago. She worked for some years at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, most recently as the Special Collections librarian. A passion for history and archaeology led her to Jersey, where she has been the librarian at the Société Jersiaise since 2014.