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The Odyssey Paperback – August 26, 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: University of Michigan Press (August 26, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0472088548
  • ISBN-13: 978-0472088546
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,674,287 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Why didn't something like this come sooner. Maintains the dignity of Homer's work while folding comfortably and well into today's vernacular. allows reders to read this masterpiece as comfortably as a modern novel."---"The El Paso Times "Homer's ancient song, "The Odyssey, is a treasure waiting to be discovered by every generation. Eickhoff's fresh, bold, contemporary translation rival's Fitzgerald's. I highly recommend it."--Stephen Coonts

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Greek --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Homer was probably born around 725BC on the Coast of Asia Minor, now the coast of Turkey, but then really a part of Greece. Homer was the first Greek writer whose work survives.

He was one of a long line of bards, or poets, who worked in the oral tradition. Homer and other bards of the time could recite, or chant, long epic poems.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Dupuis Michel on November 30, 2003
Format: Audio Cassette
Rodney Merrill's rendering of the Odyssey represents translation at its best ; it serves Homer beautifully in that it is written to be read aloud, and to arouse the emotional solidarity between the performer and its audience that will be understood at once by people who go to listen to music played in public today. You will enjoy the rich materiality of the text (the rythm of the drumming consonants and the melody of the short and long vowels) in its accurate relationship to the characters of the heroes and to the development of story. This new translation will contribute to the enduring popularity of the Odyssey.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By jennal24 on March 7, 2003
Format: Paperback
This new Homer's Odyssey translation by Rodney Merrill strives to be very literal to the Greek and to also match the line and meter of the Greek, to the extent that can be done in English. That said, the translation reads very well on the page, and in skimming through any particular book of the great epic poem one can see that Merrill has classic aesthetic taste regarding some of his choice of epithets and turns of phrases (as well as his overall approach). 'Great-hearted Odysseus', for instance, is a far better translation than 'Kind Odysseus' or 'Valiant Odysseus' or any of the numerous other choices one can find in all the many 20th century English translations. I point out that one little epithet just to give a sense of Merrill's approach. 'Great-hearted' suggests a level of being higher than the average human being, and that is what Odysseus possesses. Sticking to the literal meaning of the Greek like that (and I assume this is what Merrill has done in that epithet since he announces that this is his overall intention in translating the poem) is what is needed in a translation of the Odyssey (or Iliad). Just in the way that you can get a good feel for a translation this one has that good feel about it. It looks similar to Lattimore on the page, yet it reads much better. Maybe not poetically (go to Chapman or Pope for that), but for what Merrill seems to be attempting it comes across as successful.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Matthew E. Carver on May 2, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Rodney Merrill's poetic rendering of the Odyssey is superlative. It's greatest value over against all other translations lies in its dedication to the *ancient meter* (replacing Greek length with English stress). Read this easily understood, clear, illuminating version out loud and you will feel the entrancing poetry produced by careful attention given by Merrill to the rhythmic, metric elements of Greek epic and to historical accuracy. I had studied the Odyssey and read it in ancient Greek over the period of a semester's study and a year's reading. After sludging through Lattimore and Fagles, I turned to Humphries, who was much better than the other two, with a true sense of rhythm and no *embarassingly anachronistic* words or turns of phrase. But at a special reading at CSU San Francisco, I was able to hear Merrill speak, read some passages and compare texts. I immediately noted a much higher passion for and knowledge of the work itself in his translation, the choices that he made in words and paraphrases. Note: all translations paraphrase drastically because English is so different from Homeric Greek. Rodney, however, does it *well*. See if you can find the paperback version from Michigan University press. The hardcover is nice, but out of most students' and poetry-lovers' price-range. The paperback is available and affordable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Liam Allan-Dalgleish on October 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have nothing to add to what has been written; normally, I do not write reviews because most of them are empty-headed and verbose. But I can't resist putting my two-cents worth in. This is an extraordianry achievement. It shows what can happen when one does something with excellence and not ego-advancement in mind. I am a musicologist. In addition to everything else, I admire the musicality of this superb accomplishment.
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