La no reke hath she

The language of the Mimes is precious, with unpleasant affected archaisms, and an honest translation, it seemed to Dilly, must be the same. Cloistered in his study … Dilly worked out his English equivalent to Herodas. ‘La no reke hath she of what I say, but standeth goggling at me more agape than a crab’ is a typical sentence, while ‘Why can’t you tell me what they cost?’ comes out as ‘Why mumblest ne freetongued descryest the price?’ Satisfied, Dilly corrected his proofs; he read the reviews, all of which praised the accuracy of the text but considered the translation a complete failure, with indifference. ‘If I am unintelligible,’ he wrote, ‘it is because Herodas was.’

from The Knox Brothers, via Julian Barnes.