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The Iliad of Homer
Translated into English Blank Verse by William Cowper
The Iliad of Homer
Translated into English Blank Verse by William Cowper
The Iliad of Homer
Translated into English Blank Verse by William Cowper
Livre électronique910 pages10 heures

The Iliad of Homer Translated into English Blank Verse by William Cowper

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LangueEnglish
Date de sortie30 juin 1939
The Iliad of Homer
Translated into English Blank Verse by William Cowper
Lire l'aperçu

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Évaluation : 4.021505376344086 sur 5 étoiles
4/5

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  • Évaluation : 5 sur 5 étoiles
    5/5
    Better than the movie! Once you get the rhythm it sucks you in like a time machine. Amazing.
  • Évaluation : 3 sur 5 étoiles
    3/5
    A king offends his strongest ally in the middle of a war.Good. It's very repetitive, but its interesting.
  • Évaluation : 4 sur 5 étoiles
    4/5
    The Iliad beings in the ninth year of the Trojan war and the Greeks laying siege to Troy's capital. The 24 book story covers about a seven week period that sees the Greeks beaten back to where their ships are laid up, enduring slaughter at Trojan hands because their hero Achilles refuses to fight; he's angry that Agamemnon took the Trojan woman he'd selected as his prize. Not until Achilles' battle buddy Patroclus is killed (in Achilles' armor) by the Trojan hero Hector does Achilles rise to fight. When Hector dies, we have a good sense that Troy won't be long either.Homer's Iliad and the Odyssey are oft referenced as a pair, but it's always the Odyssey that ends up assigned reading in American junior high and middle schools. They're both long (epic!) but I assume teachers pass on the Iliad due to the amount of violence and perhaps fewer "teachable moments." The Iliad is probably one of those 'must reads' in the profession of arms, especially for infantry. I would assign it to any elected official overseeing or directing military activity. The war between Greeks and Trojans isn't just a human affair, rather the gods of Olympus are ever meddling, sometimes influencing and at other times outright spiriting their favorites out of the field of battle to spare their lives. The gods are capricious, given to their own passions, and prone to change their minds, so they frankly bear strong resemblance to politicians if one wants to relate it to real life. It's a reminder that there are always two conflicts going on, one on the battle field and one back in the halls of government; they don't always combine well.I'm unable to vouch for the quality of the translation in terms of remaining true to the Greek, but Robert Fagles deserves much credit for turning it into beautiful, modern English epic poem. The usual complaints against the Iliad are the instances of repetition and a fathomless well of detail when it comes to describing mortal combat with spear, sword, and the occasional rock stoving a skull in. As much as the Iliad glorifies manly virtues in war (like courage, bravery, camaraderie) it also showcases its horrors (the violence, fear, and waste) to the same degree. One comes away with the feeling at the end: why did we bother with all of this? What did we gain? Can we even quantify what we lost, or is it immeasurable? Overall, a long read, but worth the epic journey from page to page, book to book.
  • Évaluation : 3 sur 5 étoiles
    3/5
    Read it, love it!
  • Évaluation : 5 sur 5 étoiles
    5/5
    This version was quite the tome and I suffered from RSI just from holding the book. I have embarked upon the Great Books series as set out by Hutchins and Adler at the University of Chicago and this great tale is number 1. This is no small task but it is essential. Time and again I have seen movies about Achilles and the fall of Troy but there is something to be said about the various translations and notes that direct the reader to a long history of debates, arguments, and disagreements over Homer (or whether it was Homers), and then the translations that incorporate the Latin amendments (such as Samuel Butler's), and then how the "folk tradition" has twisted and turned this nation-building epic to suit different times. The movies have it that Hector was simply out-classed, not that he ran three laps around the walls of Troy trying to escape Achilles, not that the gods intervened time and again, even helping to kill other soldiers and so on. I like the introduction's idea of Hector as a complete man, husband, father, prince, warrior; whereas Achilles is the unbalanced warrior, hell-bent on death and glory. I have now started on The Odyssey and I did not know that the Trojan horse was not of the first book, I had suspicions but I did not know that Ulysses was the Latin name, and so on. Even the unpacking of these issues helps with my reading of Plato and Aristotle. I felt I had arrived at a place where reading more of the classic scholars made no sense unless I had at least a working grasp of Homer. But the manly ideal that has been bastardised by Hollywood and others has set me thinking deeply. Honour didn't mean masculine aggression at all costs, or that any man could do anything, or that class could not hold one back and so on. In the translation (rather than bastardisation) of the original, an entirely different view of masculinity emerges. These people were all fallible, all helped or thwarted by fortune, the gods played a major role in the plot (religion is all but excluded from the Brad Pitt version of the story), and Paris, a snivelling coward, is not helped out by Hector. Hector hates him! So much to unlearn from reading one of the oldest "western" texts. I shirk at this title - much like the re-writing of Greek ideas about masculinity, all of a sudden the Eastern Europeans get a guernsey in the Great Race Race because they were so brilliant. But it really does set me at ease to now see the portrayals of the Greek ideal and be able to see it for what it was meant to be. This does not help me to feel more secure in the world, but it does help me to see the world differently, and, maybe, more accurately.