An electronic text of the world history by Bar Hebraeus, known as the Book of the dynasties, has come into my hands. This led me to wonder whether Google translate does Arabic. And it does!
So I pasted in the first few paragraphs, to see what it made of it. Well… it was largely gibberish. But if you knew — say from Pococke’s Latin — vaguely what the subject was, you could see that it was giving you this, albeit in a primitive form.
I was actually quite impressed. Worth a try, anyway.
One consequence of this is that I can do a word count on the book. It’s around 84,000 words, which is quite a lot! It’s divided into ten “dynasties” — really ten groups of who was the dominant power at the time. Indeed they might be called “books”, I think. The 10th dynasty is described in the start as “from the kings of the Moslems to the Mongols”, for instance. The end of the 9th dynasty is the Moslem takeover.
It would certainly be interesting to get a few pages of this translated. When I next have an income, I must look at this.