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Prose versions of Homer?


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Have you looked at the standard versions, Fagles, Lattimore, etc? It's Epic Poetry, very poetic, but not necessarily poetry in the sense of what you might think. I like poetry, yet can only read so much at one setting. Iliad and Odyssey are vastly different from that, imo.

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Penguin Classics - The Odyssey translated by E.V. Rieu is very readable prose. He may have translated the Iliad as well, I'm not sure.

 

Carolyn

 

:iagree:

 

I like Rieu (he did translate The Illiad). My daughter wasn't fond of him though and bought another Penguin edition by Martin Hammond that she likes.

 

I also have Fitzgerald and want to read it. It's in verse but don't think of it as full of strange allegories and rhymes. The verse gives it a rhythym that makes it easy to read and enjoyable to read aloud.

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Have you looked at the standard versions, Fagles, Lattimore, etc? It's Epic Poetry, very poetic, but not necessarily poetry in the sense of what you might think. I like poetry, yet can only read so much at one setting. Iliad and Odyssey are vastly different from that, imo.

 

Yup. Don't let your impressions of poetry stop you from checking out verse versions.

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We are enjoying The Essential Homer translated by Stanley Lombardo. It is abridged and tends to leave out lengthy sections such as the catalogue of ships. It is a very enjoyable read

:iagree:

I think Lombardo is the most accessible of the verse translations, and the "Essential" versions — there is an Essential Iliad, Essential Odyssey, Essential Homer (containing both), and Essential Aeneid — are lightly abridged, leaving out a few passages that don't really move the story along (e.g., long lists of people's names: ...and then came so-&-so, son of so-&-so, king of such-&-such, followed by so-&-so...).

 

I also really like the full audio versions of the Iliad & Odyssey, read by Lombardo himself. Honestly, it does not read like stilted poetry at all — his translation is very fluid and "muscular" (as some reviewers have put it), and once you get into it, it's like reading a thrilling adventure story combined with a soap opera. People who don't like this translation tend to complain that it's not majestic or poetic enough, so if you're looking for the opposite of that, this might be perfect.

 

FWIW, Lukeion uses the Lombardo translations (full versions) in their Classical Lit class, with Fagles as an alternate choice. They prefer Fagles for the Aeneid, though. (Interestingly, my DS also preferred Lombardo for Homer but Fagles for Vergil.)

 

Jackie

Edited by Corraleno
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