I just 'fell' into translating as a young man when I was studying Depth Psychology and found myself surrounded by frustrated monoglots who wanted to read material in French and German but couldn't. I had a very good background in classical and modern languages so I decided to help out. What began as little more than a hobby became a 30 million-word career as a commercial and technical freelance translator for major companies, mostly in the Benelux and Switzerland.
After I retired from agency work I decided I wanted to go on translating. My lifelong interest in what might be called the 'secret' side of life, including detection (still a Sherlock Holmes fanatic!), espionage, historical mysteries and esoterica, and my desire to revive my childhood love of Latin led to an on-line encounter and subsequent collaboration with the alchemical scholar Adam McLean. The fruits of this are an ongoing series of the first translations into English of key esoteric texts in French or Latin by writers such as Gerhard Dorn and Robert Fludd. As Adam McLean writes: "My co-operation with Paul Ferguson has really enabled a wonderful series of items to be made available in print. The material he has translated for the Magnum Opus series is an astounding group of works - the Fludd, Bonacina, Dorn, Voarchadumia and now the Aurora... Hidden in the literature of alchemy are such wonderful treasures. These are, of course, known to scholars who are able to visit the libaries and special collections, but not necessarily to the wider group of alchemical enthusiasts who do not have the leisure to spend time visting libraries. All the items that Paul has worked on are this sort of hidden, unrecognised treasure." (http://www.alchemywebsite.com/weblog.html)
I also collaborate regularly with other independent scholars in the esoteric and historical fields, helping them with their linguistic problems and background research, and also helping decrypt codes and ciphers, a subject in which I have a longstanding interest.
I am not a Freemason but I have transcribed and translated a large amount of material relating to the origins of the Scottish Rite, some of which will be published in due course.
I am also an amateur musician, and my translation from German of Bettina Hoffmann's Die Viola da Gamba will be published by Routledge in November 2017.
I am currently translating the complete works of Bavarian Illuminati-founder Adam Weishaupt for Minerval Books in Malta, so am not really available for substantial commissions but will always try to help with smaller jobs and enquiries in line with the above description.
Translation of books and articles. Transcription of manuscripts and Fraktur/Schwabacher. Foreign language research. Translation of multilingual texts.
Western Esotericism, History of Ideas, Secret Societies, Historical Mysteries, Treasure Hunting, Long Eighteenth Century, Music.