The case of three translations -- those included in the two translations of Channing's book in 1897 and the publication by Mezhuev four years later -- illustrates this tendency.
And for the Declaration of Independence, the market was very good.To discover what kinds of books were translated from English and published in Soviet Russia during the first decades after 1917 is an ambitious task for special research.Nevertheless, we found no evidence of the declaration's postrevolutionary Russian-language adventures until 1935, when a collection of the constitutional and legislative documents of foreign, "bourgeois" countries was published for the first time in the Soviet period.Nonetheless, only the reforms of the 1860s brought the possibility of the first publication of the text in Russia and in Russian.We may speak about two periods in the Russian history of the declaration using the date of the publication of the first Russian translation in 1863 as a milestone.The Russian texts had to reproduce the meaning and emotional impulse that Thomas Jefferson and his colleagues designed the document to convey.Such an understanding of the goal of the translations permits us not only to evaluate the efforts of the translators and the qualities of their work but also to raise some intriguing questions: Did the times of the translations affect their character?More careful study of the texts will let us clarify this point.Why the Declaration of Independence was not republished or retranslated immediately after the revolution of 1917 is hard to decide.Such collections served as readers for students of law; some of them consisted of full texts, others were filled with extracts. In all of them the declaration appeared with other American "living documents," from the Mayflower Compact to contemporary civil codes of different states, together with constitutions and legal acts of other countries.From 1935 on, the fate of the translation of the declaration into Russian was no longer connected with an interest in the historical dimension of what is now called "intercultural relations." In the minds of publishers the declaration seemed to be firmly connected with the text of the federal Constitution, and it never appeared in Russian without its "sister document." The connection between the two documents was in this context more formal than meaningful.