The Edges of the Earth in Ancient Thought: Geography, Exploration, and Fiction

The Edges of the Earth in Ancient Thought: Geography, Exploration, and Fiction

by James S. Romm
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0691037884

ISBN-13: 9780691037882

Pub. Date: 09/19/1994

Publisher: Princeton University Press

For the Greeks and Romans the earth's farthest perimeter was a realm radically different from what they perceived as central and human. The alien qualities of these "edges of the earth" became the basis of a literary tradition that endured throughout antiquity and into the Renaissance, despite the growing challenges of emerging scientific perspectives. Here James

Overview

For the Greeks and Romans the earth's farthest perimeter was a realm radically different from what they perceived as central and human. The alien qualities of these "edges of the earth" became the basis of a literary tradition that endured throughout antiquity and into the Renaissance, despite the growing challenges of emerging scientific perspectives. Here James Romm surveys this tradition, revealing that the Greeks, and to a somewhat lesser extent the Romans, saw geography not as a branch of physical science but as an important literary genre.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691037882
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
09/19/1994
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
247
Product dimensions:
5.51(w) x 8.54(h) x 1.06(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Works Frequently Cited
Introduction: Geography as a Literary Tradition3
1The Boundaries of Earth9
Boundaries and the Boundless11
Ocean and Cosmic Disorder20
Roads around the World26
Herodotus and the Changing World Picture32
Aristotle and After41
2Ethiopian and Hyperborean45
The Blameless Ethiopians49
The Fortunate Hyperboreans60
Arimaspians and Scythians67
The Kunokephaloi77
3Wonders of the East82
Before Alexander83
Marvel-Collectors and Critics94
The Late Romance Tradition109
4Ultima Thule and Beyond121
Antipodal Ambition124
The North Sea Coast140
The Headwaters of the Nile149
The Atlantic Horizon156
5Geography and Fiction172
Ocean and Poetry176
The Voyage of Odysseus183
Pytheas, Euhemerus, and Others196
The Fiction Election202
Epilogue: After Columbus215
Index223

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