In The Greek Way, Edith Hamilton captures with "Homeric power and simplicity" (New York Times) the spirit of the golden age of Greece in the fifth century BC, the time of its highest achievements. She explores the Greek aesthetics of sculpture and writing and the lack of ornamentation in both. She examines the works of Homer, Pindar, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Aristophanes, and Euripides, among others; the philosophy of Socrates and Plato’s role in preserving it; the historical accounts by Herodotus and Thucydides on the Greek wars with Persia and Sparta and by Xenophon on civilized living.
In this informal history of Roman civilization, Edith Hamilton vividly depicts the Roman life and spirit as they are revealed in the greatest writers of the time. Among these literary guides are Cicero, who left an incomparable collection of letters; Catullus, the quintessential poet of love; Horace, the chronicler of a cruel and materialistic Rome; and the Romantics Virgil, Livy, and Seneca. The story concludes with the stark contrast between high-minded Stoicism and the collapse of values witnessed by Tacitus and Juvenal.
“No one in modern times has shown us more vividly . . . ‘the grandeur that was Rome.’ Filtering the golden essence from the mass of classical literature, she proved how applicable to our daily lives are the humor and wisdom of more than 2,000 years ago.”— New York Times