The Odyssey: Translated by Stephen Mitchellby Homer
“Sing to me, Muse . . .”
It has been said that a myth is a story about the way things never were but always are. The Odyssey is the original hero’s journey, an epic voyage into the unknown, and has inspired other creative work for millennia—from ancient poetry to contemporary fiction and films. With its consummately modern/i>/b>… See more details below
“Sing to me, Muse . . .”
It has been said that a myth is a story about the way things never were but always are. The Odyssey is the original hero’s journey, an epic voyage into the unknown, and has inspired other creative work for millennia—from ancient poetry to contemporary fiction and films. With its consummately modern hero, full of guile and wit, always prepared to reinvent himself in order to realize his heart’s desire—to return to home and family after ten years of war—the Odyssey now speaks to us again across 2,600 years.
In words of great poetic power, Stephen Mitchell’s translation brings Odysseus and his adventures vividly to life as never before. Full of imagination and light, beauty and humor, this Odyssey carries you along in a fast stream of action and imagery. One-eyed maneating giants; irresistibly seductive sirens; shipwrecks and narrow escapes; princesses and monsters; ghosts sipping blood at the Underworld’s portal, desperate for a chance to speak to the living; and the final destruction of all Odysseus’s enemies in the banquet hall—these stories are still spellbinding today. So, too, are the intimate moments of storytelling by the fire, of homecoming and reunion, fidelity and love—all of greater value to Odysseus, and to us, than the promise of immortality.
Just as Mitchell “re-energised the Iliad for a new generation” (The Sunday Telegraph), his Odyssey is the noblest, clearest, and most captivating rendition of one of the defining masterpieces of Western literature. Mitchell’s muscular language keeps the diction close to spoken English, yet its rhythms re-create the oceanic surge of the ancient Greek.
The first translation to benefit from modern advances in textual scholarship, Mitchell’s Odyssey also includes an illuminating introductory essay that opens the epic still further to our understanding and appreciation and textual notes that will benefit all readers. Beautiful, musical, accurate, and alive, this new Odyssey is a story for our time as well as for the ages.
“Mitchell's updating has resulted in a livelier, more contemporary feel for this epic of world literature… The result is a faster-moving story… make room for this one on the shelf as an intriguing variation on a familiar story.”
“Mitchell's Iliad is slimmer and leaner than anything we have seen before, and is by far the most swift-footed in recent memory....His strong five-beat rhythm is arguably the best yet in English."
“Propulsive, muscular rendering.”
"Mitchell has been widely hailed for his masterful translations and this one, I think, will be regarded as the capstone of his reputation.”
"Mitchell’s Iliad powerfully communicates the spirit and the spectacle of the classic story ...brings fresh life to the tale…"
"Thrillingly recounts a big war...."
"Read this book"
“The verse is well-forged and clean-limbed, and achieves a powerful simplicity. Mitchell ... renders fresh some of the greatest insights into humanity we have…. He has re-energised the Iliad for a new generation.”
"The ‘rock star’ of translators produces a daring new version of the epic poem... An action-packed... contemporary rendition... [Mitchell] brings ... ancient languages to the masses, upsetting established scholars."
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