Homer's Odyssey

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Overview

In this new translation of the Odyssey, Norbert Albertson has succeeded in crafting a vivid and thoughtful English version of Homer's great work. Both true to the original and resonant in the present day, it is a masterful work of story-telling for readers of our time.

Translator's note:

The Greek Odyssey is one of the supreme achievements of the human mind and spirit. This book is not that Odyssey, but a translation, which-like all other ...

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Homer's Odyssey

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Overview

In this new translation of the Odyssey, Norbert Albertson has succeeded in crafting a vivid and thoughtful English version of Homer's great work. Both true to the original and resonant in the present day, it is a masterful work of story-telling for readers of our time.

Translator's note:

The Greek Odyssey is one of the supreme achievements of the human mind and spirit. This book is not that Odyssey, but a translation, which-like all other translations of the Odyssey-like any translation of any work of literature-is a re-creation in a different language of some of the qualities of the original work. So at the very beginning, a translator must ask himself: "Which qualities of this work can I hope to ­re-create?" If you look at a number of translations of the Odyssey, you soon see that each translator has answered that question in his own way, a way that differs-and usually differs greatly-from that of all the others.
In On Translating Homer, Matthew Arnold, the great Victorian poet and critic, famously says that the qualities of Homer are four: he is rapid; he is plain and direct in thought and expression; he is plain and direct in substance; and he is noble.
In this translation I have aimed at the first three, hoping (and partly believing) that, if I succeeded to some degree in those first three, the fourth would take care of itself.

A retelling of Homer's epic that describes the wanderings of Odysseus after the fall of Troy.

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Editorial Reviews

Chris Sherman
McCaughrean's fine retelling of Odysseus' wanderings is a heroic tale in the truest sense of the word. It captures all the drama and bloodcurdling action of the original work while making the story accessible to young people in language that is still vigorous and expressive. Odysseus is a commanding figure, a bold leader, able to outwit the strongest monsters, yet so weak he cowers in Calypso's chamber. Readers can follow Odysseus' encounters with Circe, the Lotus-eaters, Poseidon, and Calypso, among others, as well as Penelope's difficulties with her suitors back home. Illustrations by Victor Ambrus complement McCaughrean's style perfectly, their bold colors and lively portrayals displaying all the energy of the text. Ambrus' renderings of the monsters are particularly gruesome. A worthy addition to most library collections.
Horn Book
McCaughrean's adaptation of Homer's epic is both faithful to the original and accessible. Odysseus' perilous adventures on his voyage home from the Trojan War -- including encounters with the Cyclops, Circe, and the Sirens -- will captivate the imagination of a new generation of readers. Pen-and-ink drawings filled with motion alternate with vibrantly colored illustrations.
From Barnes & Noble
The greatest adventure story of all time, this epic work chronicles Odysseus's return from the Trojan War and the trials he endures on his journey home. Filled with magic, mystery, and an assortment of gods & goddesses who meddle freely in the affairs of men.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781939003041
  • Publisher: New Book Partners
  • Publication date: 11/1/2013
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Homer
Homer is the author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, and is revered as the greatest ancient Greek epic poet. These epics lie at the beginning of the Western canon of literature, and have had an enormous influence on the history of literature. Modern researchers appear to place Homer in the 7th or 8th centuries BC. The formative influence played by the Homeric epics in shaping Greek culture was widely recognized, and Homer was described as the teacher of Greece. Homer's works, which are about fifty percent speeches, provided models in persuasive speaking and writing that were emulated throughout the ancient and medieval Greek worlds. Fragments of Homer account for nearly half of all identifiable Greek literary papyrus finds.
-Wikipedia.com

Biography

We know very little about the author of The Odyssey and its companion tale, The Iliad. Most scholars agree that Homer was Greek; those who try to identify his origin on the basis of dialect forms in the poems tend to choose as his homeland either Smyrna, now the Turkish city known as Izmir, or Chios, an island in the eastern Aegean Sea.

According to legend, Homer was blind, though scholarly evidence can neither confirm nor contradict the point.

The ongoing debate about who Homer was, when he lived, and even if he wrote The Odyssey and The Iliad is known as the "Homeric question." Classicists do agree that these tales of the fall of the city of Troy (Ilium) in the Trojan War (The Iliad) and the aftermath of that ten-year battle (The Odyssey) coincide with the ending of the Mycenaean period around 1200 BCE (a date that corresponds with the end of the Bronze Age throughout the Eastern Mediterranean). The Mycenaeans were a society of warriors and traders; beginning around 1600 BCE, they became a major power in the Mediterranean. Brilliant potters and architects, they also developed a system of writing known as Linear B, based on a syllabary, writing in which each symbol stands for a syllable.

Scholars disagree on when Homer lived or when he might have written The Odyssey. Some have placed Homer in the late-Mycenaean period, which means he would have written about the Trojan War as recent history. Close study of the texts, however, reveals aspects of political, material, religious, and military life of the Bronze Age and of the so-called Dark Age, as the period of domination by the less-advanced Dorian invaders who usurped the Mycenaeans is known. But how, other scholars argue, could Homer have created works of such magnitude in the Dark Age, when there was no system of writing? Herodotus, the ancient Greek historian, placed Homer sometime around the ninth century BCE, at the beginning of the Archaic period, in which the Greeks adopted a system of writing from the Phoenicians and widely colonized the Mediterranean. And modern scholarship shows that the most recent details in the poems are datable to the period between 750 and 700 BCE.

No one, however, disputes the fact that The Odyssey (and The Iliad as well) arose from oral tradition. Stock phrases, types of episodes, and repeated phrases -- such as "early, rose-fingered dawn" -- bear the mark of epic storytelling. Scholars agree, too, that this tale of the Greek hero Odysseus's journey and adventures as he returned home from Troy to Ithaca is a work of the greatest historical significance and, indeed, one of the foundations of Western literature.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of The Odyssey.

Good To Know

The meter (rhythmic pattern of syllables) of Homer's epic poems is dactylic hexameter.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 10 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2011

    Bad Scan

    Like so many of the free books available for the Nook, this book is poorly scanned & unreadable.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2014

    Joseph winn

    I love greek myths . I study it in school and was amased by the story. Me and my best friend john used to talk a lot about it . They were the best times always and forever

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2013

    Formatting looks fine.

    Formatting looks fine.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2012

    Not edited well.

    This book didn't seem to start somewere, but apparently it did because twelve pages into it it I realized that it was acctually the story. There are copy right symbols throughout the whole book, and you can't understand it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2011

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    Posted November 16, 2011

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    Posted January 18, 2012

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    Posted January 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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