The Longman Anthology of World Literature: The Ancient World / Edition 1

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The Longman Anthology of World Literature, Volume A offers a fresh presentation of the varieties of world literature from the ancient world.

The editors of the anthology have sought to find economical ways to place texts within their cultural contexts, and have selected and grouped materials in ways intended to foster connections and conversations across the anthology, between eras as well as regions. The anthology includes epic, lyric poetry, drama, and prose narrative, with many works in their entirety. Classic major authors are presented together with more recently recovered voices as the editors seek to suggest something of the full literary dialogue of each region and period. Engaging introductions, scholarly annotations, regional maps, pronunciation guides, and illustrations will provide a supportive editorial setting.

For anyone interested in world literature.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780321055330
  • Publisher: Longman
  • Publication date: 2/1/2004
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 1456
  • Product dimensions: 6.46 (w) x 9.06 (h) x 1.24 (d)

Table of Contents



The Babylonian Theogony.

A Memphite Theology, tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

The Pyramid Texts of Unas (Egypt, c. 2300 B.C.E.), tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

From Utterance 217: The King Joins the Sun-god.

Utterances 273-274: The King Feeds on the Gods.

Utterance 309: The King Serves the Sun-god.

The Rig Veda, tr. Le May.

Hymn of Creation.

Hymn of Man.

Hymn to the Dawn.


From Agganna Sutta (Buddhist counter-creation).

The Great Hymn to the Aten (Egypt, 14th century B.C.E.), tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

Enuma Elish, The Babylonian Creation Epic (c. 1200 B.C.E.), tr. Stephanie Dalley.

Enuma Elish.

Birth of the Gods. Conflict Begins.

Who will face Tiamat?

The Gods Commission Marduk.

Marduk and Tiamat at War.

Victory Celebration. Founding of Babylon.

Creation of Humanity.

Hesiod, from Theogony.

Genesis (Israel, c. 900 B.C.E.), tr. Robert Alter.

The Ancient Near East.

Poetry of Love and Devotion.

Last night, as I, the queen, was shining bright (Sumer, c. late 3rd millennium B.C.E.), tr. J.B. Pritchard.

Egyptian Love Songs (2nd millennium B.C.E.), tr. W. K. Simpson.

The Song of Songs, Jerusalem Bible tr.

The Epic of Gilgamesh, tr. Maureen Kovacs.

Perspectives: Death and Immortality.

The Descent of Ishtar to the Underworld (Babylon, 2nd millennium), tr. Stephanie Dalley.

From The Book of the Dead (Egypt, 2nd millennium) tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

Letters to the Dead, tr. Gardiner and Sethe.

Kabti-Ilani-Marduk, from The Erra Epic (Babylon, c. 8th century B.C.E.), tr. David Damrosch.

The Book of Job (Israel, c. 900 B.C.E.), Revised Standard Version.


From The Babylonian Theodicy.

Psalm 22 (“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”)

Psalm 102 (“Hear my prayer, O Lord; let my cry come unto thee!”)

Perspectives: Strangers in a Strange Land.

The Story of Sinuhe (Egypt, c. 1925 B.C.E.), tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

The Two Brothers (Egypt, c. 1200 B.C.E.), tr. Miriam Lichtheim.

The Joseph Story (Israel, 1st millennium B.C.E.), New International Version.

Genesis 35-50: The Joseph Story.

The Book of Ruth (Israel, c. 6th century B.C.E.), New International Version.

Classical Greece.


From The Iliad, tr. Robert Fagles.

Resonances: Oral Composition.

Filip Visnjic: The Death of Kraljevic Marko.

From Sirat Bani Hilal.


The Odyssey, tr. Robert Fagles.


Franz Kafka: The Silence of the Sirens.

George Seferis: Upon a Foreign Verse.

Derek Walcott: From Omeros.

Archaic Lyric Poetry.

Arkhilokhos, tr. M. L. West.

Encounter in a Meadow.

The Fox and the Hedgehog.


Sappho, tr. M. L. West.

Rich-throned immortal Aphrodite.

Come, goddess.

Some think a fleet.

He looks to me to be in heaven.

Love shakes my heart.

Honestly, I wish I were dead.

she worshipped you.

Like a sweet-apple.

The doorman's feet.


H.D.: from The Wise Sappho.

Alejandra Pizarnik: Poem, Lovers, Recognition, Meaning of His Absence, Dawn, Falling.

Alkaios, tr. M. L. West.

And fluttered Argive Helen's heart.

They tell us that Priam and his sons.

The high hall.

I can't make out the lie of the winds.

Alkman, tr. M. L. West.

Hagesichora Ode.

Pindar, tr. Frank J. Nisetich.

First Olympian Ode.


John Keats: Ode on a Grecian Urn.

Rainer Maria Rilke: Archaic Torso of Apollo.

Aeschylus (525-456 B.C.E.).

Agamemnon, tr. Richmond Lattimore.


W. B. Yeats: Leda and the Swan.

Sophocles (496-406 B.C.E.).

Oedipus the King, tr. David Grene.


Aristotle: from Poetics.

Perspectives: Tyranny and Democracy.

Solon (c. 640-558 B.C.E.) tr. M. L. West.

Our state will never fail.

The commons I have granted.

Those aims for which I called the public meeting.

Herodotus (484-425 B.C.E.), tr. Aubrey de Sélincourt.

From The History.


From The Peloponnesian War (c. 410 B.C.E.), tr. Steven Lattimore.


From The Republic, tr. Desmond Lee.

The Apology, tr. Hugh Tredennick or Jowett.

Euripides (c. 480-405 B.C.E.).

The Medea tr. Rex Warner.


Herodotus: from The History.

Friedrich Nietzsche: from The Birth of Tragedy.

Aristophanes (445-c.380 B.C.E.).

Lysistrata, tr. J. Henderson.


Plato: from The Symposium.

Early South Asia.

The Mahabharata of Vyasa (Sanskrit, last centuries B.C.E.-early centuries B.C.E).

Book 2: The Friendly Dice Game, tr. Daniel H. H. Ingalls.

Book 5: The Temptation of Karna, tr. J.A.B. van Buitenen.

Book 6: from The Bhagavad Gita, tr. Barbara Stoler Miller.


Kautilya: from The Treatise on Power.

Asoka: from Inscriptions.

The Ramayana of Valmiki (Sanskrit, last centuries B.C.E.).

Book 2: The exile of Rama, tr. Sheldon Pollock.

Book 3: The abduction of Sita, tr. Sheldon Pollock.

Book 6: The Death of Ravana and The Fire Ordeal of Sita, tr. Barend A. van Nooten, Robert Goldman, & Sally Sutherland Goldman.


From The Bhilonu Bharat of the Dungari Bhil people.

From A Comic Book Ramayana.

From A Public Address, Varanasi.

Daya Pawar, et al.: We Are Not Your Monkeys.

Perspectives: What is “Literature”?

The Ramayana of Valmiki.

The Invention of Poetry, tr. Robert P. Goldman.


From Inquiry into Literature (Sanskrit, 10th century), tr. Sheldon Pollock.


From Light on Suggestion (Sanskrit, 9th century), tr. Daniel H. H. Ingalls et al.


From The Eye for the “Light on Suggestion” (Sanskrit, 10th century), tr. Daniel H. H. Ingalls et al.

Love in a Courtly Language.

The Tamil Anthologies, (Tamil, 2nd-3rd century), tr. A. K. Ramanujan.

The Seven Hundred Songs of Hala (Prakrit, 2nd-3rd century), tr. Arvind Krishna Mehrotra.

The Hundred Poems of Amaru (Sanskrit, 7th century), tr. Daniel H. H. Ingalls.

Vatsyayana (Sanskrit, 3rd century), tr. Sir Richard Burton (revised).

Kamasutra: Kinds of Union According to Dimensions, Force of Desire, and Time.On the Different Kinds of Passion .

Kalidasa: Shakuntala and the Ring of Recollection (Sanskrit, 4th-5th century), tr. Barbara Stoler Miller.


From The Mahabarata: The Story of Shakuntala.

Kuntaka: from The Life-force of Literary Beauty.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: On Shakuntala.

Rabindranath Tagore: from Shakuntala: Its Inner Meaning.

Perspectives: Asceticism, Wisdom, and the Middle Way.

The Lore of the Dwarf Incarnation (Sanskrit, early centuries B.C.E.), tr. Wendy O'Flaherty.

The Ascetic Who Turned His Blood into Vegetable Sap.

The Brihad Aranyaka Upanishad (Sanskrit, 7th-6th century B.C.E.), tr. Patrick Olivelle.

The Nature of Self.

The Chandogya Upanishad (Sanskrit, 6th-5th century B.C.E.), tr. Patrick Olivelle.

The Essence of Reality.

Ashvaghosha (Sanskrit, 100 B.C.E.), tr. E.H. Johnston, revised.

From The Life of the Buddha.

Discourses of the Buddha (Pali, 5th century B.C.E.).

The Fire Sermon, tr. Henry Clarke Warren.

Dhaniya the Herdsman, tr. H. Saddhatissa.

The Unicorn's Horn, tr. H. Saddhatissa.

China: The Classical Tradition.

The Book of Songs (compiled by 6th c. B.C.E.), tr. Arthur Waley.

The Ospreys Cry.


Plop Fall the Plums.

In the Wilds is a Dead Doe.


In the wilds there is a dead deer, tr. Bernard Karlgren.

Lies a dead deer on younder plain, tr. Ezra Pound.


In the open grounds there is the creeping grass, tr. Bernhard Karlgren.

Mid the bind-grass on the plain, tr. Ezra Pound.


Heaven protects and secures you, tr. Bernhard Karlgren.

Heaven conserve thy course in quietness, tr. Ezra Pound.


Confucius: from The Analects.

Wei Hong: from Preface to The Book of Songs.

Tang Xianzu: from The Peony Pavilion.

Confucius (551-479 B.C.E.).

The Analects (6th c. B.C.E.), tr. S. Leys.

Perspectives: Daoism.

FromDao De Jing, tr. D. C. Lau.

FromZhuangzi, tr. Burton Watson.

From The Book of Liezi.

Xi Kang, from Letter to Shan Tao, tr. J. Hightower.

Liu Yiqing, from A New Account of the Tales of the World, tr. B. Mather.

Sima Qian, from The Grand Historian's Records.

Rome and the Roman Empire.

Virgil (70-19 B.C.E.), Aeneid, tr. Robert Fitzgerald.

From Book 1: A fateful haven.

From Book 2: How they took the city.

Book 4: The passion of the queen.

From Book 6: The world below.

From Book 8: Evander.

From Book 12: The Death of Turnus.


Horace: from Odes: 1.24, Why should our grief for a man so loved.

Macrobius: from Saturnalia.

Ovid (43 B.C.E.-18 B.C.E.).

Metamorphoses, tr. A. D. Melville.

The Creation, The Ages of Mankind, The Flood.



Narcissus and Echo.


Orpheus and Eurydice.

Orpheus' Song: Ganymede, Hyacinth, Pygmalion.

The Death of Orpheus.

The Minotaur.

Daedalus and Icarus.


Perspectives: Roman Culture and the Beginnings of Christianity.

Catullus, tr. Charles Martin (84-54 B.C.E.).

3 (“Cry out lamenting, Venuses and Cupids”).

5 (“Lesbia, let us live only for loving”).

16 (“Pedicabo et irrumabo”).

13 (“You will dine well with me, my dear Fabullus”).

51 (“To me that man seems like a god in heaven”).

76 (“If any pleasure can come to a man through recalling”).

85 (“I hate and love”).

107 (“If ever something which someone with no expectation”).


The Priapea.

Horace (65-8 B.C.E.).

Satire 1.8 (“Once I was wood from a worthless old fig tree”), tr. Richard W. Hopper.

Satire 1.5 (“Leaving the big city behind I found lodgings at Aricia”), tr. Niall Rudd.

Ode 1.25 (“The young bloods are not so eager now”), tr. David West.

Ode 1.9 (“Soracte standing white and deep”), tr. David West.

Ode 2.13 (“Not only did he plant you on an unholy day”), tr. David West.

Ode 2.14 (“Ah how quickly, Postumus, Postumus”), tr. David West.

Petronius (d. 65 CE).

From Satyricon, tr. J.P. Sullivan.

Paul (c. 10-67 or 68 CE).

From Epistle to the Romans (56 CE).

Luke (fl. 80-110 CE).

From The Gospel According to Luke.

From The Acts of the Apostles.

Roman Responses to Christianity.

Suetonius (c. 70 - after 122 CE): from The Twelve Caesars.

Tacitus (c. 56 - after 118 CE): from The Annals of Imperial Rome.

Pliny the Younger (c. 60 - c. 112 CE): Letter to Emperor Trajan.

Trajan (Emperor of Rome, 98-117 CE): Response to Pliny.

Juvenal (fl. 98-128 ce).

From The Third Satire, tr. Peter Green.

Apuleius (fl. c. 155 CE).

From The Golden Ass, tr. Arthur Hanson.

Augustine (354-430 ce), Confessions, tr. Henry Chadwick.

Invocation and infancy.

Grammar school.

The Pear-tree.

Student at Carthage.

Arrival in Rome.


Take it and read.

Monica's death.

Time, eternity, and memory.


Michel de Montaigne: from Essays.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau: from Confessions.

The City of God, tr. Henry Bettenson.


Boethius: from Consolation of Philosophy

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