The Norton Book of Classical LiteratureBook - 1993
"The literature of the classical world that has survived is a pitiful remnant of what once existed...". So begins Bernard Knox's preface to an anthology that introduces the modern reader to the enormous breadth and rich variety of that "pitiful remnant" - the foundation of Western literature and culture, the inspiration for writers from Dante to Shakespeare to T. S. Eliot. However much - or little - of it we may have read, classical literature has shaped our world and how we perceive it. Yet for most of us classical writing is little more than a narrow circle of legendary figures. The names of Homer, Aeschylus, Plato, Virgil, and Saint Augustine are familiar, but behind their work lies a vast fellowship of writers with a common mythological and artistic heritage. The Norton Book of Classical Literature thus includes not only the "greats" but also significant though lesser known figures and traditions: archaic lyric poets, Alexandrian Greeks, and Roman satirists, for example. Also recovered for usare the breathtaking variety of forms that literature took - epic, lyric, ode, dithyramb, tragedy, comedy, history, dialogue, idyll, epigram, satire, to name a few. The translations selected for this collection, from classic nineteenth-century versions to as yet unpublished manuscripts, reflect the diversity of the works themselves and bring them to us with eloquence and clarity. In his brilliant introduction - an account of the development of classical literature from the origins of the Greek language and Homer to the fall of Rome and Saint Augustine - Knox distills for the general reader a complex literary tradition and allows even those with a thorough knowledge of classical writing to seethat tradition anew. Informative notes throughout the book allow works - some long forgotten, ignored, or misinterpretedto emerge, as vital and compelling today as they were so many centuries ago. From the lyrical precision of
Publisher: New York : Norton, 1993.
Characteristics: 866 p. ; 24 cm.