Chattering Courtesans and Other Sardonic Sketches

Overview

A Greek-educated Syrian, Lucian wrote witty pieces that demonstrate a profound skepticism for religion and philosophy and encourage honest living and good sense. ?Chattering Courtesans? is a series of short dialogues in which the amusing gossip of ?kept women? gives rise to a discussion of more serious subjects such as love, sex, and marriage. Other comic dialogues in this volume show Lucian making fun of fanaticism and mocking pretension, hypocrisy, and the vanity of human wealth and power, while in ...

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Chattering Courtesans and Other Sardonic Sketches

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Overview

A Greek-educated Syrian, Lucian wrote witty pieces that demonstrate a profound skepticism for religion and philosophy and encourage honest living and good sense. “Chattering Courtesans” is a series of short dialogues in which the amusing gossip of “kept women” gives rise to a discussion of more serious subjects such as love, sex, and marriage. Other comic dialogues in this volume show Lucian making fun of fanaticism and mocking pretension, hypocrisy, and the vanity of human wealth and power, while in “Diatribes” he targets a range of subjects, from scandal and money to death, in order to demonstrate the follies of contemporary life. Also included here is Lucian’s most famous work, True Histories, which inspired imaginary voyages, from More’s Utopia to Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.

  • First time in Penguin Classics
  • Keith Sidwell's new translation captures Lucian's lively informal humor and rich variety of styles
  • Introduction discusses the influence on Lucian of earlier Greek writers and philosophers, as well as Lucian's influence on later European culture
  • Includes preface to each section, suggestions for further reading, explanatory notes, and a glossary of names
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140447026
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/28/2005
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 342,340
  • Product dimensions: 5.28 (w) x 7.86 (h) x 1.03 (d)

Meet the Author

Lucian (c.125–c.200) was born in the Roman province of Syria. He studied philosophy and rhetoric and mastered Greek, which was not his native language. An orator and satirist, he influenced the later humanist writers, including Thomas More and Erasmus.
Keith Sidwell is professor of Latin and Greek at University College Cork.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Further Reading
Tranlator's Note
Note on the Texts
Maps

In Defence of Originality
Preface
So you Think I'm the Prometheus of the Literary World?
Two Charges of Literary Assault

Favorite Philosophers
Preface
Demonax the Philosophers
The Philosopher Nigrinus


Preface
Slander
A Few Words About Mourning

Old Comic Dialogues
Preface
The Journey Down to Hades, or the Tyrant
Timon the Misanthrope
The Ship, or Prayers

New Comic Dialogues
Preface
Chattering Courtesans

Scythians
Preface
The Scythian, or the Honorary Consul
Toxaris, or Friendship

The Art of the Eulogy
Preface
An Encomium of Fatherland
Praising a Fly
Images
In Defence of Images
About the Parasite: Proof That Parasitic is an Art

The Art of the Lie
Preface
True Histories

Appendix: List of Lucian's Works
Notes
Glossary of Names
References
Index of Names and Subjects
Index of Authors and Works

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