One of the supreme masterpieces of world literature, the Homeric saga of the shipwrecks, wanderings, and homecoming of the master tactician Odysseus encompasses a virtual inventory of the themes and attitudes that have shaped Western culture. The tale of Odysseus's encounters with such obstacles as Calypso, Circe, Scylla and Charybdis, the Sirens, and the lotus-eaters, and his dramatic return to Ithaca and his patient wife, Penelope, forms a prototype for all subsequent Western epics.
Robert Fitzgerald's much-acclaimed translation, fully possessing as it does the body and spirit of the original, has helped to assure the continuing vitality of Europe's most influential work of poetry. This edition includes twenty-five new line drawings by Barnaby Fitzgerald.
(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed)
About the Author
Homer is celebrated as the greatest of ancient Greek epic poets. These epics lie at the beginning of the Western canon of literature, and have had an enormous influence on the history of literature.
A freelance writer with a penchant for art history and design. A graduate of Stanford University, he has covered design and architecture for Town & Country magazine.
Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1995. His poems, plays, translations, and essays include "Opened Ground", "Electric Light", "Beowulf", "The Spirit Level", "District and Circle", and "Finders Keepers". Robert Lowell praised Heaney as the "most important Irish poet since Yeats."
“[Robert Fitzgerald’s translation is] a masterpiece . . . An Odyssey worthy of the original.” –The Nation
“[Fitzgerald’s Odyssey and Iliad] open up once more the unique greatness of Homer’s art at the level above the formula; yet at the same time they do not neglect the brilliant texture of Homeric verse at the level of the line and the phrase.” –The Yale Review
“[In] Robert Fitzgerald’s translation . . . there is no anxious straining after mighty effects, but rather a constant readiness for what the occasion demands, a kind of Odyssean adequacy to the task in hand, and this line-by-line vigilance builds up into a completely credible imagined world.”
–from the Introduction by Seamus Heaney