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Chapman's Homer: The Iliad and The Odyssey (Wordsworth Classics of World Literature) Paperback – November 5, 2000
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About the Author
Tom Griffith has also translated Plato's The Republic, Symposium, Euthyphro, Apology, Crito, Phaedo, and Phaedrus.
Top Customer Reviews
Homer's stories are great and in this translation extremely easy to read. They were originally written in dactyllic hexameter. This is a very difficult metric to translate into modern poetry and some translations (Chapman's and Pope's) that attempt a strict conversion suffer from being too difficult to follow (the convolutions necessary to make the story fit make them very difficult to follow).
The Butler translation does away with all attempts at poetry and is written in prose. This makes the story very easy to follow. One glaring problem is that while the Iliad follows the original Greek (and hence the Greek names), the Odyssey suddenly changes to the character's Roman names and Zeus becomes Jove, Poseidon becomes Neptune and so on. This makes the story extremely difficult to follow as every character changes name.
In terms of the Kindle conversion, this was not well done. While it does not suffer from broken lines as other Kindle editions do, there are two big problems: 1) a lack of a table of content, and 2) this edition has not been indexed. Not being indexed means that you cannot use the search feature to jump to a specific book or chapter.
As a reference, The Iliad starts in location 24 and the Odyssey at location 6202.
If you don't like Shakespeare, or Spenser, or the Romantics at least -- obviously this isn't your book.
But for those of us who ARE into said style of romantic/classical/renaissance verse (whatever niche you'd like to fit it into) and are also interested into understanding better such poets as mentioned above themselves -- Chapman's Homer was the first to be done into English verse, first to be done into English at all, and was an immense inspiration and indispensable book to very many of the poets we admire and love for hundreds of years.
Chapman has a great command of style, and his largest accusation has been that he lets the meaning of his translation slip up every once and a while -- which is an annoying accusation, honestly, because most translations into verse from a very different language should be fairly given some elbow room, especially if you're not looking for a dry and worthless translation that is hardly more than a summary-turned-naptime.
These are legends. Legends are inherently organic. They grow. They take a little pinch of innovation here and there. Big deal. Get over it and enjoy this marvelous piece of poetry.
Now.. for the verse quality itself..Read more ›
Therefore it is irritating if a publisher is too lax or too lazy to indicate clearly who the translator of a particular version is. A quick squizz through the reviews also does not bring this information to light, despite a vy direct question about the identity of the translator. Therefore my addition here: I am lucky enough to recognise and compare the first sentences to different translations and found a match.
It is a translation from 1883 by Andrew Lang (who famously published a whole series of fairy tale books), Walter Leaf and Ernest Myers.
It is also inexpensive. For the Odyssey check out http://www.amazon.ca/Penguin-Classics-Odyssey-Homer/dp/0141192445/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1400759780&sr=1-4&keywords=the+odyssey which is a little on the expensive side - but the actual cover and binding are impressive looking.
The collection I am reviewing is probably the best bet for the "average person". You get both books in a readable package for around $12.. any other route you take you will likely pay close to $30 (though you will have nicer looking books).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A classic that I've read three times. Hard to believe it was written 2500 yrs ago.Published 1 month ago by Ronald P. Stewart
Of course the story is immortal, along with the characters which have shaped our thinking for millennia - but this production is a travesty. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Carl O. Trindle
A classic. You've heard about it, you can't live without it, you will be left out of conversations if you don't read it. Read morePublished on June 18, 2014 by Chloe
I'm writing reviews to get them out of the way. So this wont have any real info in it. I bought it for a school assignment. It's pretty good.Published on May 19, 2014 by Geartrooper
There is nothing I disliked I felt I was in their time i felt wonderful (if anything I looked for more reading on his Father)
I would recommend it to every one young and old
After buying and trying so many translations looking for the exact translation of the one we studied from years ago in high school, I am very pleased to have finally found it. Read morePublished on March 19, 2014 by Vivian