Description of the project


The database was produced in the context of a research project entitled “Intercultural Literature in Portugal 1930-2000: A Critical Bibliography”. It aims to contribute to Translation Studies in Portugal by covering the period not dealt with in A. A. Gonçalves Rodrigues’ pioneering work A Tradução em Portugal, whose five volumes list the translations published in Portugal between 1495 and 1930.
Designed by the Centre for Communication and Culture (CECC) of the Catholic University of Portugal in 2007, the project was initially coordinated by Teresa Seruya and Maria Lin Moniz (CECC) and Alexandra Assis Rosa (CEAUL/ULICES) till 2018. Hanna Pięta is currently the academic coordinator from CEAUL/ULICES. The project has involved a team from both research centres since 2009.
The database, which has been accessible since 2010, contains 24,260 records covering the period 1930-1986. The research project “Intercultural Literature in Portugal (1930-2000): A Critical Bibliography” involved the creation of a database of bibliographic references of translations of literary works published in volume form in Portugal since 1930, irrespective of source language. The original plan for a book and CD-ROM was quickly superseded by the launch of the online open-access database in 2010.
The following procedure was used for the production of the database:

  1. initial reflection about the concepts of translation and literature
  2. identification of information of relevance for a researcher in Translation Studies and the production of a grid showing the data to be included in each record
  3. identification of the sources of bibliographic references for source texts and translations
  4. establishment of a methodology to be followed by all the researchers in the project, in order to ensure the standardization of data
  5. creation of preliminary lists of literary texts translated into Portuguese and published in book form in Portugal
  6. location of each volume in order to check the data, correct it and/or add to the record
  7. revision of the records
  8. creation of a website to make the database available on line with free access
  9. periodic updating of the database with new data, involving the repetition of Steps 5 to 7

Main goals:

 December 2010: Launch of the online database, involving around 4500 records relating to 1930-1955.

 November 2012: Addition of new data, involving around 13,900 records relating to 1930-1965.

 May 2015: Addition of new data, involving 15,700 records relating to 1930-1974.

 July 2018: Addition of new data, involving 20,200 records relating to 1930-1981.

 April 2019: Addition of new data, involving 24,260 records relating to 1930-1986.

Future goals:

 2019-2022: research for creation of the records covering the period 1987-2000.

Key concepts and sources

A critical bibliography is a basic work tool which, while not definitive, can stimulate the kind of systematic in-depth studies required to produce a history of translation in Portugal. The project also contributes to work on the memory of the dictatorship ( Estado Novo ) and subsequent years, in order to prevent a substantial part of the cultural history of that period from sinking into oblivion. Translation has always formed a significant part of literary culture in Portugal, although it has not always been acknowledged and internalized. This bibliography will therefore function as a systematically recorded site of memory. The various translations of literary works recorded in it will thus form part of a whole, one that is still in progress, which will enhance their status. Not only does the database document a particular reality (the marked presence of foreign cultures in Portuguese textuality) but will also serve as a source for a wide range of research projects.

The items making up this corpus (i.e. translations of literary works) are by no means unequivocal. For one, translation is a problematic concept, which lacks consensual definition. In the field of literary translation, we find works labelled as “versions”, “free versions”, “adaptations” etc, as well as (many) cases of indirect translation, and, above all, pseudotranslation or fictitious translations – that is, texts that are presented as translations but which do not have any original behind them. This research project, which was inspired by the work of Israeli professor and researcher and internationally recognised pioneer of Descriptive Translation Studies, Gideon Toury (1942-2016), uses the concept of “assumed translations”; that is to say, it considers translations to be any literary works that were introduced into the Portuguese market as translations and are thus considered to be such by readers. The database includes only those translations published in book form (i.e. it excludes those that appear in periodicals, as well as texts for theatrical performance that were not published in book form).

As for the term literature, the concept adopted is also functional rather than ontological, in the sense that literature is understood to be everything that its readers consider as such. Thus, there is a clear convergence between Toury’s definition of translation and this functional conception of literature. Why should we not speak of “assumed literature”? The specialized lexis of Literary Studies seems to anticipate this when it speaks of paraliterature, which includes, among others, detective or science fiction literature, westerns, “romance de capa e espada” (swashbuckling novel), adventure and sentimental novels and comic strips.

The main sources consulted were the following:

  • the Portuguese Libraries’ Joint Catalogue (PORBASE)
  • the Catalogue of the Portuguese National Library
  • the Boletim de Bibliografia Portuguesa (the first volume of which came out in 1937, with reference to the year 1935)
  • the Index Translationum (of UNESCO)
  • newspapers and other periodicals (e.g.O Século, Diário de Notícias, Diário de Lisboa, Jornal de Notícias, Primeiro de Janeiro, Comércio do Porto),
  • magazines and literary/academic journals (e.g.Seara Nova, O Diabo, Vértice, O Pensamento, Brotéria, Portucale, Biblos, Ocidente)
  • the Dicionário de Pseudónimos e Iniciais de escritores portugueses, by Adriano da Guerra Andrade (1999),
  • o the Dicionário de Pseudónimos, compiled by Albino Lapa and Maria Teresa Vidigal (1980),
  • the Dicionário Cronológico de Autores Portugueses
  • various second-hand booksellers and private libraries

For the identification of source texts, we made use of reference libraries, such as:

Checking data

All volumes of translations recorded in this database were consulted physically. These then became the definitive sources for the data supplied (as regards dates, titles etc). References to volumes announced in the bibliography that could not be located and/or consulted were retained for future checking. Where possible, all editions of a particular work have been indicated separately, as a new edition is a novelty on the market, and needs to be counted as such for the purpose of quantitative analysis.

Composition of each record

The composition of each record was decided in the light of both the potential interests of future users and the objective requirements of a “selective bibliography”, i.e. one that presents “bibliographic references of documents referring to a specific subject matter” (Isabel Faria and Ana Gonçalves, 1992). Thus, there is a basic division between information about the translation or target text (TT), which appears in the first place, and information about the so-called original or source text (ST). When this is different from the source text used in the translation, a reference to a probable indirect translation is added under “Observations” and/or in the column “Mediating language”.

The fields relating to the target text (TT) are:

  • year of publication
  • title of the translation
  • translator (name or pseudonym)
  • pseudonym of (i.e. translator’s real name)
  • place of publication
  • publisher
  • collection
  • designation given to the text (version, adaptation, translation, etc.)
  • mediating language (in English)
  • literary genre (narrative, poetry, drama)
The fields relating to the source text (ST) are:
  • date of publication
  • title (when accompanied by asterisk (*) it means that it is referred in the Portuguese translation)
  • author (name or pseudonym)
  • pseudonym of (i.e. author’s real name)
  • place of publication (registered in the original language)
  • publisher
  • country (source followed by the abbreviation used in the ‘United Nations Statistics Division’, which, in principle, corresponds to the author’s nationality)
  • language (in English), referring to language in which the ST was written

The publication date indicated on the source text may not correspond to the original date of publication. Because this database was conceived as a tool for researchers in Translation Studies, the date indicated in it corresponds to the oldest volume available for consultation in the respective national libraries.
At the end of each record there is a space for various observations, relating, for example to the date of a prior publication in a periodical, if known; the spelling of the author’s name if this has been altered in the TT volume; the indication of a pseudotranslation; information about diminutives, titles or complementary information about the translator and/or the author; the name of editors of the TT collection and/or authors of covers; the titles of short stories/texts included in an anthology, followed by the indication of the ST author and ST title (if the ST title is given in the volume, it is followed by an asterisk); the volume unavailable because it is in poor condition, or requisitioned by the services, etc; the presumed existence of indirect translation; or when the ST was not identified/found.

Complementary reading
For more information about the process of creating the research project and the constitution of the database, see:

  • Seruya, Teresa. 2015. “The Project of a Critical Bibliography of Translated Literature and its Relevance for Translation Studies in Portugal.” in: How Peripheral is Periphery? Translating Portugal Back and Forth. Essays in honour of João Ferreira Duarte. Ed. by Marta Pacheco Pinto, Rita Bueno Maia and Sara Ramos Pinto. Cambridge Scholars Press. (text submitted in 2011)

  • Rosa, Alexandra Assis. 2012. "A Long and Winding Road: Mapping Translated Literature in 20th-Century Portugal.New Directions in Translation Studies, Special issue of Anglo-Saxónica. 3:3. Ed. by Anthony Pym and Alexandra Assis Rosa.  205-227. (link)

  • Seruya, Teresa. 2009. “Introdução a uma bibliografia crítica da tradução de literatura em Portugal durante o Estado Novo”, in: Traduzir em Portugal durante o Estado Novo, Proceedings of the 5th Colloquium in Translation Studies in Portugal, ed. by Teresa Seruya, Maria Lin Moniz and Alexandra Assis Rosa. Lisbon: Universidade Católica Editora. 69-86.

  • Seruya, Teresa.  2007. “Notes for a cartography of literary translation history in Portugal” (together with M. Anacleto, M. dos Anjos Guincho, Dionísio Soler. M.Lin Moniz and Alexandra Lopes), in: Doubts and Directions in Translation Studies, ed. by Yves Gambier, Miriam Shlesinger and Radegundis Stolze, Amsterdam: John Benjamins . 59-71.

Academic publications that reveal the potential of this new tool for the study of literary translation in Portugal include (selection of more recent publications):

  • Rosa, Alexandra Assis. 2017. “Rethinking the Hegemony of English in Twentieth-Century Portugal.” International English and Translation. Special Issue of The Translator 23 (4), ed. Rita Queiroz de Barros and Karen Bennett. 441-455. (link)

  • Pięta, Hanna. 2016. "On Translation between (Semi)peripheral Languages: The External History of Polish Literature Translated into European Portuguese as a Case in Point." The Translator 22 (3):354-377. (link)

  • Seruya, Teresa, e Maria Lin Moniz. 2015. "As literaturas eslavas em Portugal durante o Estado Novo: Ensaio bibliográfico." Special Issue of IberoSlavica, ed. Teresa Seruya e Hanna Pięta 131-151. (link)

  • Pięta, Hanna (2013). “Fontes bibliográficas utilizadas no estudo da história da tradução da literatura polaca em Portugal: apresentação e discussão." “A Scholar for all Seasons.” Homenagem a João de Almeida Flor. Lisboa: CEAUL. 297-310. (link)

[Last updated: August 2018]


Academic coordination
CECC: Teresa Seruya and Maria Lin Moniz
CEAUL/ULICES: Alexandra Assis Rosa (till 2018), Hanna Pięta (from 2018)
Technical coordination
Maria Lin Moniz (CECC)
Review of data
Maria Lin Moniz (Coordination), Hanna Pięta (CEAUL/ULICES), Rita Bueno Maia (till 2019, CECC and CEAUL/ULICES), Catarina Xavier (from 2019, CEAUL/ULICES)
Rui Nascimento
Grafic design
João Casaca

Language consultants

  • German: Teresa Seruya (CECC)
  • Bulgarian: Nana Metodieva (FLUL)
  • Danish: Susana Janic
  • Spanish: Rita Bueno Maia (CECC e CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Hungarian: Zsófia Gombár (CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Italian: António Fournier and Vanessa Castagna
  • Polish: Hanna Pięta (CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Russian: Pieter Boulogne (KULeuven) and Nonna Pinto (CECC)

Research consultant

  • João de Almeida Flor (CEAUL/ULICES)

Current team

Researchers (of CEAUL/ULICES and CECC)

  • Ana Raquel Duarte da silva Correia (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Rita Silva (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Anita Calado Gouveia (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Alexandre Dias Pinto (collaborator, CECC)
  • Beatriz Gil (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES))
  • Catarina Xavier (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Cristina Soares Brum (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Hanna Pięta (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Inês Alexandra Castro Côrte-Real (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Inês de Lemos Dias Barracas (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Inês Paiva Correia (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Isabel Maria Ferro Mealha (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Joana Allen Valente Cardoso da Silva (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Júlia Kiss (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Luís Miguel Correia Menezes Silva (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Karen Bennett (researcher, CETAPS and CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Madalena Dias (volunteer, CECC)
  • Maria dos Anjos Guincho (collaborator, CECC)
  • Maria Eduarda Melo Cabrita (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Maria Lin de Souza Moniz (researcher, CECC)
  • Nadia Gilardi (collaborator, CECC)
  • Rita Bueno Maia (researcher, CECC and CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Rita Queiroz de Barros (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Sabrina Santos (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Silene Cardoso (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Sofia Pereira (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Susana Valdez (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Tânia Filipa Viegas (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Teresa Maria Menano Seruya (researcher, CECC)
  • Zsófia Gombár (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)

Previous team:

The following researchers and volunteers participated in previous stages of the project but are no longer part of the current team:

  • Alexandra Assis Rosa (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Cristina Gaspar (collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES till 2012)
  • Ana Filipa Cerqueira (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Filipa Vieira (researcher, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Filipa Oliveira (collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES till 2013)
  • Ana Lúcia Claudino (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Luísa Dias (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Luísa Teixeira (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Ana Luísa Valdeira da Silva (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Ana Rita Vaz Gordo (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES in 2015)
  • Ana Sofia Oliveira (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • André Mâncio Alves Pereira (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Carlota Miranda (collaborator, CECC)
  • Carolina Marques (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Catarina Neves (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Catarina Pinto (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Celeste Simões (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Cristina Marques (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Diana Simões (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Diogo Tellechea (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Elena Sottilotta (occasional collaborator, Univ. Roma Tre(CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Elisabete Bárbara (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Helena Sabina Almeida (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Inês Bernardo (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Inês Paiva Couceiro (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Iolanda Zorro (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Isabel Neto (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Joana Figueiras (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Joana Silva (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • José Cardoso (collaborator)
  • Leonor Perdigão (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Lili Cavalheiro (collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES till 2012)
  • Luzia Prates (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Maria Alexandra Ambrósio Lopes (researcher, CECC)
  • Marcos Cravinho (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Maria da Anunciação Ferreira (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Maria Inês Almeida (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Maria Jacinta Magalhães (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Maria Joana Futre (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES from 2015)
  • Maria João Costa (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Maria Lúcia Ayres d’Abreu (investigadora, CEAUL/ULICES till 2016)
  • Mariana Andrade (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Nance H. Dhirajlal (occasional collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Paula Gonçalves (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Pedro Martins (collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES till 2013)
  • Raquel Mouta (collaborator, CEAUL/ULICES till 2012)
  • Renata Azevedo (volunteer, CEAUL/ULICES)
  • Rosário Jordão (occasional collaborator, CECC)
  • Verena Lindemann (occasional collaborator, CECC)

This work would not have been possible without the ongoing support of the Directorate of General Bibliographic Services of the Portuguese National Library.

[Last updated: April 2019]

Este trabalho é financiado por fundos nacionais através da FCT – Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, I.P., no âmbito do projeto UID/ELT/00114/2019.