The first great adventure story in the Western canon, The Odyssey is a poem about violence and the aftermath of war; about wealth, poverty, and power; about marriage and family; about travelers, hospitality, and the yearning for home.
In this fresh, authoritative version—the first English translation of The Odyssey by a woman—this stirring tale of shipwrecks, monsters, and magic comes alive in an entirely new way. Written in iambic pentameter verse and a vivid, contemporary idiom, this engrossing translation matches the number of lines in the Greek original, thus striding at Homer’s sprightly pace and singing with a voice that echoes Homer’s music.
Wilson’s Odyssey captures the beauty and enchantment of this ancient poem as well as the suspense and drama of its narrative. Its characters are unforgettable, from the cunning goddess Athena, whose interventions guide and protect the hero, to the awkward teenage son, Telemachus, who struggles to achieve adulthood and find his father; from the cautious, clever, and miserable Penelope, who somehow keeps clamoring suitors at bay during her husband’s long absence, to the “complicated” hero himself, a man of many disguises, many tricks, and many moods, who emerges in this translation as a more fully rounded human being than ever before.
A fascinating introduction provides an informative overview of the Bronze Age milieu that produced the epic, the major themes of the poem, the controversies about its origins, and the unparalleled scope of its impact and influence. Maps drawn especially for this volume, a pronunciation glossary, and extensive notes and summaries of each book make this an Odyssey that will be treasured by a new generation of scholars, students, and general readers alike.
* Beautifully illustrated with images relating to Homer's life and works
* Features the complete extant works of Homer, in both English translation and the original Greek
* Concise introductions to the epic poems and other works
* Provides both verse and prose translations of ‘The Iliad’ and ‘The Odyssey’
* Multiple translations of the epic poems: 8 translations of ‘The Iliad’ and 6 translations of ‘The Odyssey’
* Includes Augustus Taber Murray’s translations of both epics, which previously appeared in Loeb Classical Library editions of Homer’s works
* Character notes on major figures of the Trojan Epic Cycle
* Images of famous paintings inspired by Homer’s works
* Excellent formatting of the texts
* Easily locate the poems or sections you want to read with individual contents tables
* Includes Homer's rare spurious works and fragments, first time in digital print
* Provides a special dual English and Greek text of ‘The Iliad’ and ‘The Odyssey’, allowing readers to compare the sections paragraph by paragraph – ideal for students
* Features 6 bonus biographies and critical works – immerse yourself in Homer's ancient world
* Scholarly ordering of texts into chronological order and literary genres
* UPDATED with Murray’s translations of ‘The Iliad’ and ‘The Odyssey’
* UPDATED with Dual Greek and English section
* UPDATED with 6 biographical and critical works
Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles
CAST OF CHARACTERS
THE ILIAD – Chapman’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Pope’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Cowper’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Butler’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Lang’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Buckley’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Derby’s Translation
THE ILIAD – Murray’s Translation
CAST OF CHARACTERS
THE ODYSSEY – Pope’s Translation
THE ODYSSEY – Cowper’s Translation
THE ODYSSEY – Lang’s Translation
THE ODYSSEY – Butler’s Translation
THE ODYSSEY – Murray’s Translation
THE ADVENTURES OF ULYSSES – Charles Lamb
THE HOMERIC HYMNS
FRAGMENTS AND SPURIOUS WORKS
FRAGMENTS OF LOST EPIC POEMS
THE WAR OF THE TITANS
THE STORY OF OEDIPUS
THE LITTLE ILIAD
THE SACK OF ILIUM
NON-EPIC POEMS ATTRIBUTED TO HOMER
THE EXPEDITION OF AMPHIARAUS
THE TAKING OF OECHALIA
THE BATTLE OF FROGS AND MICE
THE CONTEST OF HOMER AND HESIOD
The Greek Texts
PRONOUNCING ANCIENT GREEK
LIST OF GREEK TEXTS
The Dual Texts
DUAL GREEK AND ENGLISH TEXTS
The Biographies and Criticism
THE WORLD OF HOMER by Andrew Lang
HOMER AND HIS AGE by Andrew Lang
HOMER AND THE EPIC by Charles Burton Gulick
HOMER AND CLASSICAL PHILOLOGY by Friedrich Nietzsche
HOMER by T. W. Lumb
HOMER AND THEOCRITUS by William Ernest Henley
Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles
translated by Samuel Butler
Sing, O goddess, the anger of Achilles son of Peleus, that brought
countless ills upon the Achaeans. Many a brave soul did it send
hurrying down to Hades, and many a hero did it yield a prey to dogs
and vultures, for so were the counsels of Jove fulfilled from the
day on which the son of Atreus, king of men, and great Achilles, first
fell out with one another.
And which of the gods was it that set them on to quarrel? It was the
son of Jove and Leto; for he was angry with the king and sent a
pestilence upon the host to plague the people, because the son of
Atreus had dishonoured Chryses his priest. Now Chryses had come to the
ships of the Achaeans to free his daughter, and had brought with him a
great ransom: moreover he bore in his hand the sceptre of Apollo
wreathed with a suppliant's wreath and he besought the Achaeans, but
most of all the two sons of Atreus, who were their chiefs.
"Sons of Atreus," he cried, "and all other Achaeans, may the gods
who dwell in Olympus grant you to sack the city of Priam, and to reach
your homes in safety; but free my daughter, and accept a ransom for
her, in reverence to Apollo, son of Jove."
On this the rest of the Achaeans with one voice were for
respecting the priest and taking the ransom that he offered; but not
so Agamemnon, who spoke fiercely to him and sent him roughly away.
"Old man," said he, "let me not find you tarrying about our ships, nor
yet coming hereafter. Your sceptre of the god and your wreath shall
profit you nothing. I will not free her. She shall grow old in my
house at Argos far from her own home, busying herself with her loom
and visiting my couch; so go, and do not provoke me or it shall be the
worse for you."
The old man feared him and obeyed. Not a word he spoke, but went
by the shore of the sounding sea and prayed apart to King Apollo
whom lovely Leto had borne. "Hear me," he cried, "O god of the
silver bow, that protectest Chryse and holy Cilla and rulest Tenedos
with thy might, hear me oh thou of Sminthe. If I have ever decked your
temple with garlands, or burned your thigh-bones in fat of bulls or
goats, grant my prayer, and let your arrows avenge these my tears upon
Thus did he pray, and Apollo heard his prayer. He came down
furious from the summits of Olympus, with his bow and his quiver
upon his shoulder, and the arrows rattled on his back with the rage
that trembled within him. He sat himself down away from the ships with
a face as dark as night, and his silver bow rang death as he shot
his arrow in the midst of them. First he smote their mules and their
hounds, but presently he aimed his shafts at the people themselves,
and all day long the pyres of the dead were burning.
For nine whole days he shot his arrows among the people, but upon
the tenth day Achilles called them in assembly- moved thereto by Juno,
who saw the Achaeans in their death-throes and had compassion upon
them. Then, when they were got together, he rose and spoke among them.
"Son of Atreus," said he, "I deem that we should now turn roving
home if we would escape destruction, for we are being cut down by
war and pestilence at once. Let us ask some priest or prophet, or some
reader of dreams (for dreams, too, are of Jove) who can tell us why
Phoebus Apollo is so angry, and say whether it is for some vow that we
have broken, or hecatomb that we have not offered, and whether he will
accept the savour of lambs and goats without blemish, so as to take
away the plague from us."
I shall not here argue the two main points dealt with in the work just mentioned; I have nothing either to add to, or to withdraw from, what I have there written. The points in question are:
(1) that the "Odyssey" was written entirely at, and drawn entirely from, the place now called Trapani on the West Coast of Sicily, alike as regards the Phaeacian and the Ithaca scenes; while the voyages of Ulysses, when once he is within easy reach of Sicily, solve themselves into a periplus of the island, practically from Trapani back to Trapani, via the Lipari islands, the Straits of Messina, and the island of Pantellaria.
(2) That the poem was entirely written by a very young woman, who lived at the place now called Trapani, and introduced herself into her work under the name of Nausicaa.
The main arguments on which I base the first of these somewhat startling contentions, have been prominently and repeatedly before the English and Italian public ever since they appeared (without rejoinder) in the "Athenaeum" for January 30 and February 20, 1892. Both contentions were urged (also without rejoinder) in the Johnian "Eagle" for the Lent and October terms of the same year. Nothing to which I should reply has reached me from any quarter, and knowing how anxiously I have endeavoured to learn the existence of any flaws in my argument, I begin to feel some confidence that, did such flaws exist, I should have heard, at any rate about some of them, before now. Without, therefore, for a moment pretending to think that scholars generally acquiesce in my conclusions, I shall act as thinking them little likely so to gainsay me as that it will be incumbent upon me to reply, and shall confine myself to translating the "Odyssey" for English readers, with such notes as I think will be found useful. Among these I would especially call attention to one on xxii. 465-473 which Lord Grimthorpe has kindly allowed me to make public.
I have repeated several of the illustrations used in "The Authoress of the Odyssey", and have added two which I hope may bring the outer court of Ulysses' house more vividly before the reader. I should like to explain that the presence of a man and a dog in one illustration is accidental, and was not observed by me till I developed the negative. In an appendix I have also reprinted the paragraphs explanatory of the plan of Ulysses' house, together with the plan itself. The reader is recommended to study this plan with some attention....