Described by a later Greek historian as "a man seriously committed to raising a laugh", Lucian exulted in the exposure of absurdity and the puncturing of pretension, and was capable of finding a comic angle on almost any subject. In this selection we see him conversing with his literary enemies, railing against hypocrisy and the vanity of human wealth and power, and taking a wry look at the power of lust and the unsatisfactory nature of deviant sexual practices.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
About the Author
Lucian (AD c.125- c.200) was a Greek writer of prose satires. Many of his works are dialogues where mythological or historical figures are placed in ridiculous situations. He was influential on the later Humanist writers, including Thomas More and Erasmus.
Keith Sidwell is Professor of Latin and Greek at University College Cork. He is co-author of the language textbooks Reading Greek and Reading Latin, and author of Reading Medieval Latin and Lucian: a selection. He has published widely on Greek Tragedy, Greek Comedy, Lucian and his influence, and Medieval and Renaissance Latin literature.
Table of Contents
Note on the Texts
In Defence of Originality
So you Think I'm the Prometheus of the Literary World?
Two Charges of Literary Assault
Demonax the Philosophers
The Philosopher Nigrinus
A Few Words About Mourning
Old Comic Dialogues
The Journey Down to Hades, or the Tyrant
Timon the Misanthrope
The Ship, or Prayers
New Comic Dialogues
The Scythian, or the Honorary Consul
Toxaris, or Friendship
The Art of the Eulogy
An Encomium of Fatherland
Praising a Fly
In Defence of Images
About the Parasite: Proof That Parasitic is an Art
The Art of the Lie
Appendix: List of Lucian's Works
Glossary of Names
Index of Names and Subjects
Index of Authors and Works
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Initially I thought this book was going to be incredibly difficult to read and so put off reading it for as long as possible. However, chattering courtesans was interesting, insightful and at times even funny. Lucian makes fun pre-concieved ideals about women and men in that time. He makes fun of religion and customs, for example mourning those who have died.