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Saturday, 21 February 2009

Is it a Grinch, is it a Gruffalo ....? No, it's a Greffier!

Readers with long memories may recall that, in November 2008, Andrew Duff -- a Member of the European Parliament -- took it upon himself, at the instigation of the IPKat's friend Justin Watts, to champion the notion that the judicial output of the Court of Justice of the European Communities might be made available in the English language (see earlier post here).  


Right: the Gruffalo may scare little children, but the Greffier can ward off awkward questions from MEPs ...

The IPKat has since learned that Mr Duff received a response dated 11 February 2009 from one R. Grass, on headed notepaper that indicated that Mr/Mrs/Ms Grass was Le Greffier (at this point, Merpel dives for her dictionary and Tufty, with a superior air, points his paws to Babelfish).

For the record, Le Greffier says that more than 60% of Advocate Generals' Opinions appear in English. This means that somewhere close to 40% don't.  The Kats are poor statisticians, but they would love to know whether, of that 60%, (a) how many were the important ones and (b) how many were made available in English for any reason other than the fact that the AG had drafted them in English in the first place or because they must be issued in English as the language of the case. In other words, what percentage (and it must be less than 60%) is the court's translation service able to say it deserves credit for contributing?

Adds the IPKat, in the great tradition of fantastic creatures beginning with Gr, first we have the Grinch, the Gruffalo, and the Gryphon -- but now we have the Greffier ...  Are there any others?

4 comments:

Eric said...

What about Gremlins?
And by the way, "greffier" is also a French slang word --nothing rude here-- for cat.

Jeremy said...

Thanks, Eric -- can't believe I missed gremlins. Will add the bit about greffier/cat to to my collection of miscellaneous feline trivia.

Anonymous said...

Does 'grim reaper' count ? My (English) dictionary also has 'grockle' (look it up) and 'green-eyed monster'.

Never understood your beef here, Jeremy. Do you really think that having ECJ views in English make them any less incomprehensible ?

Richard Gallafent said...

Clearly my favourite has passed you by - the Groak.

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