The most eloquent translation of Homer's Odyssey into modern English.
Richmond Lattimore was born in 1906. He was considered one of the leading translators of Greek classical literature. He died in 1984
Homer’s Odyssey - the epic tale of Odysseus and his ten-year journey home
after the Trojan War forms one of the earliest and greatest works of Western
Championed by Athene, and hounded by the
wrathful sea-god Poseidon, Odysseus encounters the terrifying one-eyed Cyclops,
escapes Scylla and Charybdis, is seduced by Circe and Calypso, and finally reunites
with his beloved Penelope.
Confronted by natural and supernatural
threats—shipwrecks, battles, monsters and the merciless enmity of the sea-god
Poseidon—Odysseus must continually test his bravery and cunning if he is to
reach his homeland safely and overcome terrible obstacles that, even there,
me, O muse, of that ingenious hero who traveled far and wide after he had
sacked the famous town of Troy.”
The Samuel Butler translation is an
extraordinary rendering of Homer's Odyssey, easily the most accessible
and enthralling epic of classical Greece.
HOMER is believed to have lived circa 750 BC
in Ionia and is thought to be the author of the earliest works of Western
Literature: Odyssey and Iliad.
"Tell us, Goddess, daughter of Zeus, start in your own place:
when all the rest at Troy had fled from that steep doom
and gone back home, away from war and the salt sea,
only this man longed for his wife and a way home."
Homer's Odyssey, at once an exciting epic of strife and subterfuge and a deeply felt tale of love and devotion, stands at the very beginning of the Western literary tradition. From ancient Greece to the present day its influence on later literature has been unsurpassed, and for centuries translators have approached the meter, tone, and pace of Homer's poetry with a variety of strategies. Chapman and Pope paid keen attention to color, drama, and vivacity of style, rendering the Greek verse loosely and inventively. In the twentieth century, translators such as Lattimore kept rigorously close to the sense of each word in the original; others, including Fitzgerald and Fagles, have departed further from the language of the original, employing their own inventive modern style.
Poet and translator Edward McCrorie now opens new territory in this striking rendition, which captures the spare, powerful tone of Homer's epic while engaging contemporary readers with its brisk pace, idiomatic language, and lively characterization. McCrorie closely reproduces the Greek metrical patterns and employs a diction and syntax that reflects the plain, at times stark, quality of Homer's lines, rather than later English poetic styles. Avoiding both the stiffness of word-for-word literalism and the exaggeration and distortion of free adaptation, this translation dramatically evokes the ancient sound and sense of the poem. McCrorie's is truly an Odyssey for the twenty-first century.
To accompany this innovative translation, noted classical scholar Richard Martin has written an accessible and wide-ranging introduction explaining the historical and literary context of the Odyssey, its theological and cultural underpinnings, Homer's poetic strategies and narrative techniques, and his cast of characters. In addition, Martin provides detailed notesâ€”far more extensive than those in other editionsâ€”addressing key themes and concepts; the histories of persons, gods, events, and myths; literary motifs and devices; and plot development. Also included is a pronunciation glossary and character index.-- William F. Wyatt, Jr., Brown University
As you reevaluate the books you use in your classroom to meet the Common Core Standards, this free collection—filled with selections from classics such as Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, contemporary novels like The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, and the AP English favorite How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster—will help you decide which books are right for you and your students.