richard dixon


"Richard Dixon captures brilliantly the intricacies and surprises of Umberto Eco's unpredictable narrative, the richness and playfulness of its language [...] giving us a lively, thoroughly enjoyable reading experience."

John Florio Prize, 2016: Commended translation (Numero Zero)



The Javelin Thrower by Paolo Volponi
(University of Chicago Press and Seagull Books, June 2018)

Volponi cover




The Ruin of Kasch by Roberto Calasso
(Farrar Straus & Giroux / Penguin Books, January 2018)

Ruin of Kasch US

Ruin of Kasch UK


Chronicles of a Liquid Society by Umberto Eco
(Harvill Secker / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, November 2017)

Eco - CLS - UK cover

Eco - CLS - US cover


The Experience of Pain by Carlo Emilio Gadda
(Penguin Classics, November 2017)




Distant Light by Antonio Moresco
(Archipelago Books, March 2016)

shortlisted for the 2017 Italian Prose in Translation Award: “Dixon’s translation captures the cadences of Moresco’s prose and his lush, vivid imagery, while also successfully navigating between the narrative's tangible world and its challenging, metaphysical reflections.”

longlisted for the Dublin Literary Awards 2018




Dante: The Story of His Life by Marco Santagata
(Harvard University Press, April 2016)

“Elegantly translated...” - Tim Parks in London Review of Books, July 2016

“Marco Santagata has been well served by his translator, Richard Dixon.” – Peter Hainsworth in Times Literary Supplement, October 2016




Numero Zero by Umberto Eco
(Harvill Secker / Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, November 2015)

Numero Zero has been brilliantly translated into English by Richard Dixon, who has been able to catch the changes of voice and tone of the characters, and find English equivalents for the Italian jokes and wordplay.”
         Alberto Manguel, The Guardian 26 November 2015




The Art of the Publisher by Roberto Calasso
(Farrar Straus & Giroux / Penguin Books, November 2015)




Ardor by Roberto Calasso
(Farrar Straus & Giroux / Penguin Books, Nov 2014)

“Calasso’s prose is scrupulously lucid and elegant in Richard Dixon’s translation” - Pankaj Mishra
         The New York Times December 19, 2014

A ‘book-length essay’ about ritual and sacrifice in Vedic India more/...




The Combover by Adrián N. Bravi
(Frisch & Co, November 2013) more/...




The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
[translation of author’s revisions for new edition]
(Mariner Books, April 2014) more/...




Inventing the Enemy by Umberto Eco
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt / Harvill Secker, Sept 2012) Collected essays




The Prague Cemetery by Umberto Eco
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt / Harvill Secker, Nov 2011)
shortlisted for the 2012 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize



Umberto Eco in conversation with Richard Dixon (in Italian) at the Italian Cultural Institute, London – 25 February 2012
( Part I | Part 2 | Part 3 - on YouTube )


Zibaldone by Giacomo Leopardi
(Farrar Straus & Giroux / Penguin Books, July 2013)

A member of the team of seven translators on the Zibaldone Project run by Rome & Birmingham (UK) Universities; as representative of the team he was awarded the Premio Ginestra 2014.







Richard Dixon lives in Italy and has worked full-time as a translator from Italian to English since 1996.

He was one of the translators of Giacomo Leopardi’s Zibaldone (published in 2013) and his translations include  works by Umberto Eco, Carlo Emilio Gadda, Roberto Calasso, and Antonio Moresco.

He has also translated poetry by Franco Buffoni, Eugenio De Signoribus and other contemporary Italian poets.

He was called to the Bar in 1978 and spent the 1980s in full -time practice as a London barrister with experience of civil and criminal cases, and appearances in the Court of Appeal and House of Lords.

His play, Just Another Case, was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and BBC World Service in 1992.

In 1989 he and Peter Greene moved to Italy’s Marche region where they live in a rural canonica they restored during the 1990s.


An adjoining cottage and chapel have been converted into rental accommodation. Details here

Download a full biography here


Richard Dixon