Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis; Caput Primum; Puer qui Vixit; 'Dominus et Domina Dursley, qui vivebant in aedibus Gestationis Ligustrorum numero quattor signatis...' this opening, also known as 'Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive...' has become one of the most read opening chapters in the world. Newly translated into Latin for the first time, this is following in the steps of other great children's classics, including Winnie the Pooh (winnie ille pu) and Paddington Bear (ursus nomine paddington). The huge task of translating into Latin (most translations are done from Latin) has been undertaken by Peter Needham, who taught Latin at Eton for over 30 years. James Morwood, of Oxford University, has said of the translation, 'The translation is great stuff. It is accurate and fluent, but it is much more than that. It has been carried off with wit, inventiveness, sensitivity and panache. I find it impossible to think of its being better done.'
J.K. Rowling is the author of the bestselling Harry Potter series of seven books, published between 1997 and 2007, which have sold over 450 million copies worldwide, are distributed in more than 200 territories, translated into 74 languages, and have been turned into eight blockbuster films. She has also written two small volumes, which appear as the titles of Harry's schoolbooks within the novels. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through The Ages were published by Bloomsbury Children's Books in March 2001 in aid of Comic Relief. In December 2008, The Tales of Beedle the Bard was published in aid of the Children's High Level Group, and quickly became the fastest selling book of the year
As well as an OBE for services to children's literature, J.K. Rowling is the recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees including the Prince of Asturias Award for Concord, France's Légion d'Honneur, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award, and she has been a Commencement Speaker at Harvard University USA. She supports a wide number of charitable causes through her charitable trust Volant, and is the founder of Lumos, a charity working to transform the lives of disadvantaged children
For further information about J.K. Rowling, please visit her new website: www.jkrowling.com
(Photo credit: JP Masclet)