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Legacy of Greede
Quotes About Greek
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"Not to know Greek is to be ignorant of the most flexible and subtle instrument of expression which the human mind has devised" (Simmons, xii).
"It seems to be impossible to live in constant communion with the first minds of antiquity and not imbibe something of the spirit of moderation, of self-control, of cautious wisdom, that breathes through their counsels" (Gildersleeve, 22).
"Perhaps the greatest legacy of the Greeks was their belief in the goodness of what they were and what they had to give the the rest of the world" (Simmons, 61).
""Letters are the beginning of wisdom." So one Greek maxim had it, with "letters" standing for knowledge of language, the ability to convey the complexity and subtlety of thought and sense with words. The Hellenistic age strengthened the consensus that mastery of language defined the highest reaches of cultivation. As Marrou has reminded us, when we speak of "classical education" today, we really mean "Hellenistic education." For it was during the Hellenistic age, roughly from the death of Alexander in 322 to the first century BC, that curricula throughout the Mediterranean congealed. The Word was in the ascendant. The cultivated man was, in a real sense, the literary man, the man of words. It was during this period too that the "conscious ideal of human perfection" made itself felt more widely as a culturally shaped force. One was moved, Marrou wrote, to recreate one's self from unmolded clay and "to produce from the childish material ... the man who is fully man, whose ideal proportions one can just perceive: such [became] every man's lifework, the one task worthy of a lifetime's devotion"" (Simmons, 63).
"Ancient Greek, though destined for hibernationn as the language of deep learning in the West from the end of the Roman period to the fifteenth century, had claimed the crown long before as the queen of philosophical and literary languages. The koine, or common, dialect was spoken by much of the Roman world, including many in early Christian settlements dotting the Mediterranean. The Gospels were penned for that world in Greek, as were the Epistles of St. Paul" (Simmons, 83).
"If anyone wishes to understand grammar, rhetoric, mathematics, history, or Holy Scripture, let him learn Greek. We owe everything to the Greeks" (Alexander Hegius, 15th century head of the College of Deventer).
"Within the two literatures of Greece and Rome are contained all the knowledge that we recognize as vital to mankind" (Desiderius Erasmus, late 15th century)."
"You live a new life for every new language you speak. If you know only one language, you live only once." (Czech proverb)
I have found the above quote very true. I have studied many languages. It is a hobby. And with every language comes different viewpoints and ideas. (Colby)
"The limits of my language are the limits of my universe." (Ludwig Wittgenstein)
"Today when few can read the ancient languages, we neglect the surviving texts, that even now could astonish and instruct" (Why Study Classics article by Karl Maurer).
"In learning a language, the chief difficulty consists in making acquaintance with every idea which it expresses, even though it should use words for which there in no exact equivalent in the mother tongue; and this often happens. In learning a new language a man has, as it were, to mark out in his mind the boundaries of quite new spheres of ideas, with the result that spheres of ideas arise where none were before. Thus he not only learns words, he gets ideas too.
"This is nowhere so much the case as in learning ancient languages, for the differences they present in their mode of expression as compared with modern languages is greater than can be found amongst modern languages as compared with one another. This is shown by the fact that in translating into Latin, recourse must be had to quite other turns of phrase than are used in the original. The thought that is to be translated has to be melted down and recast; in other words, it must be analyzed and then recomposed. It is just this process which makes the study of the ancient languages contribute so much to the education of the mind.
"It follows from this that a man's thought varies according to the language in which he speaks. His ideas undergo a fresh modification, a different shading, as it were, in the study of every new language. Hence an acquaintance with many languages is not only of much indirect advantage, but it is also a direct means of mental culture, in that it corrects and matures ideas by giving prominence to their many-sided nature and their different varieties of meaning, as also that it increases dexterity of thought; for in the process of learning many languages, ideas become more and more independent of words. The ancient languages effect this to a greater degree than the modern, in virtue of the difference to which I have alluded" (from Arthur Schopenhauer, "On the Study of Latin" at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#a).
"I have gone back to Greek literature with a passion quite astonishing to myself. I have never felt anything like it. I was enraptured with Italian during the six months which I gave up to it; and I was little less pleased with Spanish. But, when I went back to the Greek, I felt as if I had never known before what intellectual enjoyment was. Oh that wonderful people! There is not one art, not one science, about which we may not use the same expression which Lucretius has employed about the victory over superstition, "Primum Graius homo--." (from Thomas Babington Macaulay, "On the Greeks, especially Thucydides" at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#b).
"Even as mere languages, no modern European language is so valuable a discipline to the intellect as those of Greece and Rome, on account of their regular and complicated structure. Consider for a moment what grammar is. It is the most elementary part of logic. It is the beginning of the analysis of the thinking process...
"But the superiority of the literature itself, for purposes of education, is still more marked and decisive. Even in the substantial value of the matter of which it is the vehicle, it is very far from having been superseded... the treasure which they accumulated of what may be called the wisdom of life: the rich store of experience of human nature and conduct, which the acute and observing minds of those ages, aided in their observations by the greater simplicity of manners and life, consigned to their writings, and most of which retains all its value The speeches in Thucydides: the Rhetoric, Ethics, and Politics of Aristotle, the Dialogues of Plato: the Orations of Demosthenes: the Satires, and especially the Epistles of Horace, all the wntings of Tacitus: the great work of Quintilian, a repertory of the best thoughts of the ancient world on all subjects connected with education: and, in a less formal manner, all that is left to us of the ancient historians, orators, philosophers, and even dramatists, are replete with remarks and maxims of singular good sense and penetration, applicable both to political and to private life. and the actual truths we find in them are even surpassed in value by the encouragement and help they give us in the pursuit of truth" (from James Stuart Mill, "On the Study of Classics" at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#c).
"Practically every era of Western civilization has at one time or another tried to liberate itself from the Greeks, in deep dissatisfaction because whatever they themselves achieved, seemingly quite original and sincerely admired, lost color and life when held against the Greek model and shrank to a botched copy, a caricature" (from Friedrich Nietzsche, "On the Greeks." at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#e).
"ON THE NEED TO READ A WRITER IN HIS OWN LANGUAGE. The acquisition of Greek was of course fundamental for my later work, not only so far as my knowledge of Greek philosophy was concerned, but: for understanding fundamentally that one cannot deal with materials unless one can read them.
"That sounds trivial, but as I later found out, it is a truth not only neglected but hotly contested by a good number of persons who are employed by our colleges and who, with the greatest of ease, talk about Plato and Aristotle, or Thomas and Augustine, or Dante and Cervantes, or Rabelais or Goethe, without being able to read a line of the authors on whom they pontificate. (From Collected Works, vol. 34 p. 39) (from Eric Voegelin, "On the Classics." Found at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#l)
"The best thing would be to get rid of the MCATs, once and for all, and rely instead, wholly, on the judgment of the college faculties.
"You could do this if there were some central, core discipline, universal within the curricula of all the colleges, which could be used for evaluating the free range of a student's mind, his tenacity and resolve, his innate capacity for the understanding of human beings, and his affection for the human condition. For this purpose, I propose that classical Greek be restored as the centerpiece of undergraduate education. The loss of Homeric and Attic Greek from American college life was one of this century's disasters. Putting it back where it once was would quickly make up for the dispiriting impact which generations of spotty Greek in translation have inflicted on modern thought. The capacity to read Homer's language closely enough to sense the terrifying poetry in some of the lines could serve as a shrewd test for the qualities of mind and character needed in a physician...
"If everyone had to master Greek, the college students aspiring to medical school would be placed on the same footing as everyone else, and their identifiability as a separate group would be blurred, to everyone's advantage...
"Latin should be put back as well, but not if it is handled, as it ought to be, by the secondary schools. If Horace has been absorbed prior to college, so much for Latin. But Greek is a proper discipline for the college mind" (from Lewis Thomas, "How to Fix the Premedical Curriculum (with classical Greek)" found at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#m -- Lewis Thomas (1913-1993) was a physician, poet, etymologist, essayist, administrator, educator, policy advisor, and researcher. He was born in Flushing, New York and attended Princeton University and Harvard Medical School. He became Dean of Yale Medical School and New York University School of Medicine, and President of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Institute.)
“Until the twentieth century, anyone in England who had any kind of education at all had an education in the classics,” [Jasper] said. “Until the university reforms of the eighteen-seventies, all education at Oxford and Cambridge was in that tradition. And, yes, it is true that a lot of English literature is influenced by the classics. Dr. Johnson wrote poems in Latin. Marlowe translated big chunks of the Aeneid, and his ‘Dido, Queen of Carthage’ contains bits out of its fourth book. Milton wrote a lot of poems in Latin, and the whole style of ‘Paradise Lost’ is really unintelligible unless one knows Latin and is familiar with Latin epics. Dryden and Pope were the greatest of translators from the Latin and Greek. Pope made his name and fortune translating Homer, and his best poems are explicit imitations of classical poets. He wrote these marvellous poems called ‘Imitations of Horace.’ People like Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Shelley were all very keen on Greek. Keats was perhaps an exception. He wasn’t a gent—he was mostly self-educated—but he picked up as much Greek as he could. In fact, it may have meant more to him because he learned it himself. Tennyson was tremendously keen on Virgil and wrote a very fine poem on him. Arthur Hugh Clough wrote English poems in hexameters. Matthew Arnold was a considerable scholar of the classics, and Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote poems in Latin, which you have no doubt seen in the back of the collected poems. Eliot knew the classics pretty well, too. He was very much interested in Heraclitus and Virgil. There’s not much Greek and Latin in his poems, though—there’s more French. Louis MacNeice read Greats at Merton. The truth is that if you want to study English literature at all, even that of the twentieth century, you have to know some of the classics...
"...a good classical education will produce a mind that is capable of stretching itself. A less rigorous education will produce a less elastic mind...
"Studying that world [Greece and Rome] is bound to be educational, because most people are imprisoned in the tyranny of the present; they imagine that things must always have been the way they are now" (From Jasper Griffin, "On a Classical Education." Found at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html#n --- Jasper Griffin is an Oxford classicist, educated at Christ's Hospital and Balliol College, Oxford [founded by one of my ancestors-Colby] and the author of (among other things) a splendid book called Homer on Life and Death).
"You asked me what is the good of reading the Gospels in Greek.
(from Czeslaw Milosz (1911-2004) found at http://www.udallasclassics.org/whyClassics.html).
"But I have never gone away from them. How can an educated person stay away from the Greeks? I have always been far more interested in them than in science." —Albert Einstein
"All the more strange, then, is it that we should wish to know Greek, try to know Greek, feel for ever drawn back to Greek, and be forever making up some notion of the meaning of Greek, though from what incongruous odds and ends, with what slight resemblance to the real meaning of Greek, who shall say?" — Virginia Woolf
"I would make them all learn English: and then I would let the clever ones learn Latin as an honor, and Greek as a Treat." — Sir Winston Churchill
"I continue to keep myself busy with Greek and Latin, and perhaps I'll always keep myself busy with them. I love the perfume of those beautiful languages; Tacitus is for me like bronze bas-reliefs, and Homer is beautiful like the Mediterranean: both have the same pure blue waves, the same sun, and the same horizon." — Gustave Flaubert
"We are all Greeks! Our laws, our literature, our art, have their roots in Greece." — Percy Bysshe Shelley
"To read the Latin and Greek authors in their original is a sublime luxury...I thank on my knees him who directed my early education for having in my possession this rich source of delight." —Thomas Jefferson to Dr. Joseph Priestly January 27, 1800.
"I think myself more indebted to my father for this than for all the other luxuries his cares and affections placed within my reach." — Thomas Jefferson, on his classical education.
"The Romans were a notoriously practical culture. In comparison the Greeks were highly inquisitive of the world about them almost to the point of being interested in the mathematical method of this or that problem rather than its actual result. Great deals of knowledge were also amassed in Egypt which with its thousands of years of investigation had gathered a considerable body of knowledge in a number of scientific areas, including the heavens. The greatest library of the age was at the famous city of Alexandria in Egypt (see image) (from Maria Milani, at http://www.mariamilani.com/ancient_rome/ancient_roman_libraries.htm).
"To love Homer, as Steele said about loving a fair lady of quality, "is a liberal education."" (Andrew Lang, quoted in Pharr).
Gildersleeve, Basil Lanneau. Essays and Studies. Baltimore: N. Murray, 1890.
Marrou, H. I. The History of Education in Antiquity. Translated by George Lamb. NY: Sheed and Ward, 1956.
Pharr, Clyde. Homeric Greek. Boston: D.C. Heath, 1920.
Simmons, Tracy Lee. Climbing Parnassus: A New Apologia for Greek and Latin. Wilmington, Delaware, ISI Books, 2012.
Translators*** Lexilogos: Translates English-Greek, Greek-English; great for typing Greek. Shows modern Greek.
Koinenoun. the common language of the Greeks from the close of the classical period to the Byzantine era.
Also, a common language shared by various peoples; a lingua franca. plural noun: koines - Dictionary
Koine Greek - also known as Alexandrian dialect, common Attic, Hellenistic or Biblical Greek, was the common supra-regional form of Greek spoken and written during the Hellenistic period, the Roman Empire, and the early Byzantine Empire, or late antiquity. It evolved from the spread of Greek following the conquests of Alexander the Great in the fourth century BC, and served as the lingua franca of much of the Mediterranean region and the Middle East during the following centuries. It was based mainly on Attic and related Ionic speech forms, with various admixtures brought about through dialect levelling with other varieties.
Koine Greek included styles ranging from more conservative literary forms to the spoken vernaculars of the time. As the dominant language of the Byzantine Empire, it developed further into Medieval Greek, which then turned into Modern Greek
Literary Koine was the medium of much of post-classical Greek literary and scholarly writing, such as the works of Plutarch and Polybius. Koine is also the language of the Christian New Testament, of the Septuagint (the 3rd-century BC Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible), and of most early Christian theological writing by the Church Fathers. In this context, Koine Greek is also known as "Biblical", "New Testament", "ecclesiastical" or "patristic" Greek. It continues to be used as the liturgical language of services in the Greek Orthodox Church - Wikipedia
Perseus Online Dictionary best according to Benny Lewis
Online Greek Lexicon Univ. of Chicago... consolidating the dictionary databases of Perseus into an easily-searchable dictionary program that includes the big LSJ Greek Lexicon, the full Lewis and Short Latin Dictionary, and (important for medievalists) DuCange
LexiLogos ancient Greek dictionary
Textkit. Free Latin and Greek textbooks and dictionaries for the autodidact. Read them online or download them.
Loeb Classical Library all the classics in English and Latin/Greek on facing pages.
Advice for Learning Foreign-Language Vocabulary This is for learning Latin, but it has a lot of great tips.
Aristarchus.it a set of working tools for research and teaching in the subject area of Greek and Latin ancient world. Available in English
Attic Greek by Mastronarde. Many free online guides and tutorials. Pronunciation audios.
Vis-Ed Review These are vocabulary study cards for French, German, Spanish (generally, choose the bilingual Spanish-English edition rather than the classical Spanish edition), Greek (both classical and biblical), Hebrew (biblical), Italian, Latin, and Russian. Each, very inexpensive set includes about 1,000 flash cards (1 1/2"x 3 1/2" each) and a study guide containing simple instructions and a mini-dictionary, all packaged in a sturdy box. Extra helps, such as the principal parts of irregular verbs, are shown on the cards. Many words (in the Spanish set reviewed) have related forms that appear as nouns, verbs, and adjectives, so all are shown on the cards. For instance, the noun "el calor" (heat) has an adjectival form—"caluroso/a" which is also on the card. The foreign language is printed in black on one side, and the English equivalent is printed on the reverse in green. Use these cards to review and expand vocabulary for any of the above languages.
Plato’s Symposium Greek and Latin Texts with Facing Vocabulary and Commentary
5 lines per day habit — you need routine
If you wish to become a life-long reader of Latin or Greek outside of the university environment:
* Set up a very easy-to-reach goal that you can meet daily, e.g. 5 lines of Greek/Latin per day.
Even if you are a student with regular assignments, follow this regimen on holidays and breaks. You can always read more than five lines, but maintain the five lines of prose or poetry as a minimum goal for each day. The minimum goal is intended to encourage you to maintain the habit even on those days when you are exhausted or overly busy. If the goal is too high, you are likely to skip a day and break the habit. It is the development of the habit–not the quantity of lines–that matters. Once you develop a daily routine, the number of lines that you read will increase accordingly.
Celebrate your successes daily — you need positive reinforcement
Find some way to celebrate your daily progress and make it known to others:
*Announce to family and friends that you are reading a particular Greek or Latin work.
To develop a habit, you need not only routine but also positive reinforcement. In a school environment, this reinforcement comes readily in the form of feedback from teachers, regular quizzes and exams, and eventually your degree. Outside of school, however, you have to be proactive and create your own opportunities for positive reinforcement.
First, announce to everyone that you are in fact reading a particular Greek or Latin work. You can do this verbally, but it is also good to note your goal online: for example, on Facebook. If the people you encounter daily are aware of what you are doing, they will more likely ask about your progress and give you that extra encouragement that you need.
Second, write out your translation. As you meet your daily reading goal, you need something physical to show how much progress you have made. Fitness bands and apps are popular among athletes for the same reason. These bands monitor an athlete’s daily progress and provide a physical reminder of just how many steps, repetitions, miles, etc. one has completed. We need similar reminders as we read Latin and Greek. That internal ‘wow’ that you express to yourself as you look over your written translation may be all the reinforcement that you need to sustain your habit.
Third, set intermediate goals every week or every two weeks and reward yourself when you meet those goals. If, for example, you are reading at a rate of 10 lines per day (again, keep the minimum at 5-per-day), reward yourself after every 100 lines. Splurge on coffee. Treat yourself to a movie. In short, give yourself something to look forward to as you strive to meet each intermediate goal. Again, the aim is positive reinforcement.
Finally, when you meet your overall goal, celebrate and create a trophy to remind yourself of your accomplishment. Do not separate your inner life of the mind from your social life. Tell everybody about your achievement and take a victory lap. If you want Latin and Greek to be part of who you are, make your reading known to others. Moreover, treat yourself to something truly special, perhaps a night at your favorite restaurant, and make sure that everyone knows why you are celebrating. The anticipation alone will keep you motivated as you work towards your goal.
Can’t these books spoon-feed students Latin and Greek in the classroom?
I take this criticism very seriously. Since traditional methods and commentaries have played a large part in my own intellectual, aesthetic, and moral development, it is reasonable that I would want the next generation of readers to follow in my footsteps and cultivate strong work habits. We forget, however, how much time is wasted in page-flipping and unnecessary dictionary work and fail to imagine how that wasted time could otherwise be spent.
Latin and Greek teachers are able to uphold higher standards and demand more challenging assessments of students from these new commentaries than from traditional ones. These new books allow instructors to isolate high frequency vocabulary, morphology and grammar from the reading and ask that students use the time saved from dictionary work to review and learn the material for a quiz at the beginning of class, for example. Instead of having students flounder–often painfully–to decipher 2nd aorist or perfect stems, teachers can can give students a list of principal parts or a verb synopsis to memorize in the same period of time. Alternatively, they can ask that students use the accumulated time saved from dictionary work to write essays, read secondary literature, or (dare I say it?) read more Greek and Latin.
Educational psychology has shown–and Latin and Greek teachers know from experience–that direct instruction in vocabulary, principal parts, and morphology is more efficient and preferable to the indirect methods of learning vocabulary and forms that are currently employed in intermediate and advanced-level Latin and Greek classrooms. Asking students to use traditional methods and look up word after word which will occur only once or twice in the entire course is both inefficient and irresponsible.
Faenum Publ. classical texts & commentaries
Greek Prose Composition memrise course
Lukeion Project Great video on Latin--60% of our vocabulary in English. Also Greek. Gives student a large vocabulary and the ability to think more logically.
Why take Latin or Ancient Greek?Learning Latin or Greek is well worth the effort. Studies conducted by the Educational Testing Service show that Latin students consistently outperform all other students on the verbal portion of the SAT based on data from the past decade. Latin learners even outperform other language students by a fairly large margin. Classics majors tend to have a higher GPA at the college level and have accelerated performance in nearly all other subjects such as math, music and history. This makes them appealing as first choices for law and medical schools. While there are advantages to taking any language, Classical languages pay the highest dividends.
Ancient Greek Key Words memrise course--began 7/8/15
Ancient Greek Basic Vocabulary memrise course; words chosen by frequency
Koine Greek memrise course
Ancient Greek OCR Word List memrise course
Ancient Greek Fundamentals memrise course - A reference grammar for the Ancient Greek language, including paradigm verbs, irregular verbs, pronouns, cardinal and ordinal numbers, and noun declension separated by: masculines, feminine, and neuter; and by stem. Derived from the "Oxford Grammar of Classical Greek."
Odyssey Vocabulary memrise course - Some of the tougher vocab from the Odyssey - all books now covered.
Athenaze Bk.1 memrise course
Athenaze Bk.2 memrise course
50 Ancient Greek Phrases memrise course - The following course is based off of the list: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Greek_phrases. Each level has seven items in it. I think that this is a little much, but that's how it is because the course creation tools are mind numbingly moronic.
Ancient Greek Grammar memrise course
Active of the Greek Verb λυω memrise course - Active indicative forms of the regular verb λυω in the present, future, imperfect and aorist.
Greek: An Intensive Course memrise course
Euripides Vocabulary memrise course - Some common words found in Greek Tragedy
Intermediate Ancient Greek memrise course - A vocabulary list compiled from the harder words in the Basic Ancient Greek Vocabulary book.
Greek Prose Vocabulary memrise course - Vocabulary list for A2 Greek Prose Composition.
Mastronarde's Intro. to Attic Greek memrise course
Latin and Greek Roots memrise course
Active of φιλεω memrise course
Odyssey Vocabulary memrise course - Vocabulary for Homer's Odyssey 21: 288-423
Gen. Attic Greek memrise course - vocabulary
Croy Vocabulary memrise course
3rd Declension memrise course
Ancient Greek First Vocabulary memrise course
Homeric Vocabularies memrise course - Vocabularies as presented by Owen and Goodspeed with a few additions
Reading Greek memrise course - Reading Greek vocabulary and principal parts. Levels ask you to type English and Greek. I recommend using a Greek keyboard (found in Windows' settings). Breathings are included, but I have left out accents. (Smooth breathing: press apostrophe ('), then the vowel. Rough breathing: press shift + apostrophe, then the vowel.) Declension and gender are found in brackets as part of the English meaning, but are optional.
Ancient Greek Infinitives memrise course - Ancient Greek infinitives. When typing in, writing (aor)/(pres) is not necessary for correct answer recognition. The brackets are there to distinguish between the aorist and present, as both aorist and present are translated as present, with the difference being aspect. The present indicates that the action is continuous, e.g. "he intended to live in glory", while the aorist conveys a sense of definiteness, e.g. "that man wants to kill you".
A Small Guide to Greek memrise course
From BartGr. at Learning Ancient Greek group in Library Thing:
Reading Greek is of course both the goal of studying ancient Greek and the most important tool for the intermediate student -I mean, by reading a lot you get better at it-, but lately I'm thinking that having some active command of the language might help too. There is perhaps no better way for gaining insight in grammar and syntax than actually using the language (writing, even speaking). So I'm planning to work through North & Hillard's Greek Prose Composition. If anyone is up for joining me, please do! We could compare translations, discuss alternatives and keep eachother motivated.
I have the actual book and answer key, but the text is freely available here: http://www.textkit.com/learn/ID/51/author_id/11/ Also, all the vocabulary of the book has been integrated into a memrise course : http://www.memrise.com/course/17735/greek-prose-composition-north-and-hillard-2/
Another from BartGr.:
After having 'e most of my readings in Attic, I'm brushing up on epic Greek by going at a high pace through a Reading Course in Homeric Greek. I have to say, if I had to start again learning ancient Greek from scratch, I would prefer this textbook quite a bit to Mastronarde's Introduction to Attic Greek.
On Textkit I found this excellent resource, an Attic paraphrase of the Iliad by Theodorus Gaza, a Byzanthine scolar writing around 1400: http://books.google.be/books?id=vSY-AAAAcAAJ&redir_esc=y or http://www.lulu.com/shop/homer-and-theodorus-gaza/iliad-with-paraphrase-of-theod... Very nice if you want to make the jump from Attic to Epic or vice versa
Another from BartGr.:
At the moment I'm reading only Homer. I started the Iliad tree months ago and am now in the middle of book VI. I plan to read the entire Iliad from beginning to to end. Homer really isn't that difficult Greek once you get the hang of it. The syntax is actually pretty light, compared to some Attic prose I read. The main difficulty lies in the massive vocabulary and the sometimes overwhelming multitude of forms (5 ways to say 'to be'' for instance).
Anyone else reading/ studying Greek?
Aoidoi "Aoidoi" is classical Greek for "bards," like Homer, or just "poets." This site is dedicated to the study of ancient Greek poetry from the Epics to Anacreontics. Most of the work is directed at producing versions of Greek poems with vocabulary, grammar and dialect notes for beginners.
Scholia This is a collection of prose texts in various historical languages which I have marked up with notes on grammar, vocabulary (lots of vocabulary), text criticism and history. The model is similar to the poetry texts at Aoidoi.org. The main difference is that the prose texts here may be in a less complete stage of commenting. It is hoped others will find them useful, but they are probably less useful for beginners than for intermediate and advanced readers.
Enchiridion of Epictetus with scholiae
Epicurus: Principal Doctrines with scholiae et voc.
Greek Grammar in Greek grammar voc.
: Paula Safire, Ancient Greek Alive (wonderfully entertaining stories)
Frank Beetham, Reading Greek with Plato (he's the only guy who admits how hard Greek is. He spoon feeds you, but Plato, like cheesecake, tastes good when eaten with a spoon. He has an answer key.)
Schoder/Horrigan, A Reading Course in Homeric Greek (more complete and systematic than Pharr or Beetham. First half has good made up exercises, then you read real, heavily annotated Homer)
Christophe Rico, Polis (best Greek audio ever. He teaches you to speak Greek.)
Learning Greek on Your Own So my first piece of advice is this: Make sure you want to learn ancient Greek. If you ''t, you won't. So go ahead and buy a book if you want to, you might pick up a little bit and satisfy linguistic curiosity--it certainly won't hurt you. But unless you have a reason for studying Greek, that book probably won't get a lot of use. One way of motivating yourself? Read good translations of Greek literature. They will let you know what you're working toward. Trust me, if you love Euripides (or Plato, or Homer, or the Church Fathers, or whomever) in English, you'll go simply crazy for him in Greek where he's so much better. And he really is that good. Most of them are that good.
Introduction to Attic Greek Paperback – March 19, 1993, by 'ald J. Mastronarde -- This is a no-holds-barred approach to ancient Greek, written by a professor who got tired of seeing students coming to graduate school with huge gaps in their basic knowledge. You can guess what happened. He wrote a book that filled those gaps. The result is something a bit daunting and very grammar oriented, but of the highest quality. If you are a mature, motivated student, I cannot see going wrong here. On the other hand, I wouldn't recommend it if it didn't have an answer key. Bonus: web-based tutorials and exercises. (This book is also particularly attractive for those with experience in other languages or a background in linguistics.) Ancient Greek Tutorials, by 'ald J. Mastronarde
Reading Greek: Text (Joint Association of Classical Teachers Greek Course) (Pt. 1) (English and Greek Edition) Paperback – December 29, 1978, by Joint Association of Classical Teachers -- The above is a great way to jump right into Greek and focus on reading without having the grammar behind it all remain a mystery. It is one of a set of books, however, and it must be purchased alongside its companion volume Reading Greek : Grammar, Vocabulary and Exercises. Once again this would be hard to recommend without a tool that makes it all even more worthwhile for self-learners, namely An Independent Study Guide to Reading Greek. Another advantage to this volume is that there are several readers in the series designed for those who have finished these beginning books. Generally speaking I would call this series more "user friendly" than Mastronarde's book, but this most definitely isn't "Greek for Dummies" or watered down.
Suggestion #3: Fact: Classicists are suckers for those who like antiquity. Use this to your advantage. We certainly ''t become professional teachers of Greek and Latin because the pay is great. If you have a college or university nearby, you might try contacting someone in the Classics Department (it may well be hidden as a program in a general Foreign Language Department) who teaches Greek. Although people might be too busy to give you much time, most classicists are unable to resist the lure of an intelligent and interested audience. You will probably be able to get some questions answered and some friendly advice. You may even be able to sit in on a few classes. Fact: Classicists are strangely attracted to the internet. Who would've thought that a discipline interested in all that old stuff would be so heavily wired (for the internet that is, though caffeine is a reasonably interpretation as well). Of course there are some holdouts who have refused to move beyond IBM Selectrics (you'll get their special Greek type "ball" thing when you pry them out of their cold dead hands), and even some who think anything but good quality paper is an unworthy medium, but as a field we have embraced computers and technology as tools to help us research and teach about antiquity. That means you'll find a fair number of helpful cyber-resources. Use them!
You're not alone. Really you aren't. If you look around enough, you'll find others who share your interest. They may be living next door and part of a reading group, or they may be across the globe but running an email list dedicated to people trying to get some knowledge of Greek. There may not be millions of them, but numbers aren't everything.
Edizioni Accademia: Vivarium Novum has two pages with links to downloadable books to learn Greek (and Latin) in alternative ways:
Greek & Latin BookstoreBedwere's Store (self-published)
Europeana: Think Culture Les auteurs grecs expliqués
Christophe Rico. Polis. Helmut Buske, 2011.
It is strange that an English version has not yet appeared. Can we take this to mean that Europeans are more supportive of Living Language Methods than Americans and Canadians and Australians, not to mention Brits? On the other hand, I've heard that a second edition, with new material, is forthcoming, and this will be available in English.
Your are correct that intermediate Greek learners ''t need an English translation anyway, since the whole idea is to stick to the target language.
Suggested by akhnaten in textkit blog on resources:
Suggested by icet4t in textkit blog on resources:
Ancient Greek Tutorials suggested source from Textkit blog
One's first twenty or forty minutes of the study of Greek should be devoted to the pronunciation exercises of S. G. Daitz. —
Suggested by Lucretius2327 in textkit blog on resources:
The student should listen through the twenty practice words. Daitz's enunciation of the sounds of the alphabet (including diphthongs) and his twenty practice words (with aspirations and pitch clearly sounded) provides a solid foundation for a living approach to Ancient Greek. (The reading from the Iliad is fine until Chryses speaks: at which point, of Montana children at least, one could well ask — What dying animal does this sound like?).
But let it be asserted with ever so much force: BEST, BEST, BEST practice is to read the Latin or Greek words OUT LOUD as you peruse them — so that the English meaning imbues itself to the SOUND of the Greek or Latin word. For them, language was first and foremost ACOUSTIC, AUDIBLE and ARTICULATED. (Aristophanes' word for snore in the opening of the Clouds (?????) was thought to mimic the sound of a snorting horse.) The more senses one involves in the process of learning, the deeper the roots of assimilation are struck. Attempting to learn Greek or Latin without employing the mouth and ears, is like fighting a heavyweight bout with both hands tied behind one's back!
(from Textkit blog http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=12640).
Poetry Recital includes recording of Nagy reading Homer - requires Apple's Quicktime 3.0. Has recordings of Latin and Greek materials.
Classical language project requires Shockwave/Flash plugins.
Suggested by Paul Derouda in textkit blog on resources:
Are you aware of Stefan Hagel? He has 'e a stunningly good reconstruction of what Homer's singing just might have sounded like, perhaps more to the liking of Montana children. The song of Demodokos from the book 8 of the Odyssey. Homeric Singing - An Approach to the Original Performance
There's also some extracts of reconstructed Greek that are not sung, also very good. The Sound of Ancient Greek - Classical Pronunciation
Suggested by mwh in textkit blog on resources:
April 6, 1178 BC. Solar eclipse. Odysseus arrives in Ithaca.
Anki SRS automated Space Repetition System. It's free and can be used on almost any computer... Can also be 'e manually with a Leitner box.
Arepo Books offers books in Latin and other foreign languages such as German, French and Italian. We bring rare and out of print books back at reasonable prices.
Die D-Scholien zur Odyssee. Kritische Ausgabe. Ernst, Nicola (2004) Die D-Scholien zur Odyssee. Kritische Ausgabe. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.
Suggested by brunapogliano in textkit blog on resources:
Fluent Forever cover to homepage
Forvo how to pronounce words in multiple languages
Google Images bottom "Switch to Basic Version"
The Greek Language and its Dialects easy to access, it runs smoothly and quickly.
Hellenic Bookservice the largest collection of Classics and Modern Greek books in the world,,, Our Classics department covers ancient history, culture, mythology, religion, as well as literature. Located in Lon'.
Has Latin Scrabble, with game rules in English, French and German as well as Latin. 25 pounds. Has Latin and Greek games, crosswords, posters, wall maps, bumper stickers
A Survey of the Manuscripts of some Ancient Authors Greek and Latin
Paleography: Interpreting Ancient Manuscripts Greek New Testament
Adamantios Korais (27 April 1748 – 6 April 1833) was a Greek humanist scholar credited with laying the foundations of Modern Greek literature and a major figure in the Greek Enlightenment. His activities paved the way for the Greek War of Independence and the emergence of a purified form of the Greek language, known as Katharevousa. Encyclopædia Britannica asserts that "his influence on the modern Greek language and culture has been compared to that of Dante on Italian and Martin Luther on German".
Advanced Papyrological Information System Greek and Roman documents
AKROPOLIS WORLD NEWS the site of world news in Ancient Greek
Akrotiri Ministry of Culture in Greece: It is one of the most important prehistoric settlements of the Aegean. The first habitation at the site dates from the Late Neolithic times (at least the 4th millenium B.C.). During the Early Bronze Age (3rd millenium B.C.), a sizeable settlement was founded and in the Middle and early Late Bronze Age (ca. 20th-17th centuries B.C.) it was extended and gradually developed into one of the main urban centres and ports of the Aegean.
Akrotiri from Wikipedia: a Minoan Bronze Age settlement on the volcanic Greek island of Santorini (Thera). The settlement was destroyed in the Theran eruption about 1627 BCE and buried in volcanic ash, which preserved the remains of fine Frescoes and many objects and artworks
Akrotiri Digs from the Santorini Website: The large extent of the settlement (ca. 20 hectares), the elaborate drainage system, the sophisticated multi-storeyed buildings with the magnificent wall-paintings, furniture and vessels, show its great development and prosperity
American Classical League founded in 1919 for the purpose of fostering the study of classical languages in the United States and Canada
/www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-30019338"> Amphipolis skeleton from Alexander's time found in Greece Archaeologists in northern Greece have found a skeleton inside a tomb from the time of Alexander the Great, during a dig that has enthralled the public.
Ancient Writings Revealed! the story of the discovery in 1906 of Archimedes' writings
Archimedes of Syracuse (c. 287 BC – c. 212 BC) was an Ancient Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, inventor, and astronomer. Although few details of his life are known, he is regarded as one of the leading scientists in classical antiquity... Generally considered the greatest mathematician of antiquity and one of the greatest of all time, Archimedes anticipated modern calculus and analysis by applying concepts of infinitesimals and the method of exhaustion to derive and rigorously prove a range of geometrical theorems, including the area of a circle, the surface area and volume of a sphere, and the area under a parabola. Other mathematical achievements include deriving an accurate approximation of pi, defining and investigating the spiral bearing his name, and creating a system using exponentiation for expressing very large numbers. He was also one of the first to apply mathematics to physical phenomena, founding hydrostatics and statics, including an explanation of the principle of the lever. He is credited with designing innovative machines, such as his screw pump, compound pulleys, and defensive war machines to protect his native Syracuse from invasion.
Archimedes "In the hearts and minds of scientists Archimedes occupies the same respectable position as Newton and Gauss. In his ancient Greek days he was known as the "the wise one," "the master" and "the great geometer". His works such as the "Death Ray" gained him popularity and fame that lasts till this day. He was one of the last great Greek mathematicians."... "The tomb of Archimedes is famous for it depicts his famous diagram, a sphere in a cylinder of the exact height and diameter. Archimedes had earlier proved that the volume and surface area of the sphere would be two thirds that of the cylinder. In 75 B.C., 137 years after the death of Archimedes, it was Cicero who was responsible for giving respect and attention to Archimedes' tomb, which had been long neglected. Cicero had heard about the tomb of Archimedes, but it took him a long time to find it, as the local populace were unable to help. Ultimately he found it at the Agrigentine gate in Syracuse, covered in bushes. He cleaned up the tomb and gave it its due respect."
Archimedes Home Page This site is a virtual book about Archimedes, who is widely regarded as the greatest mathematician and scientist in antiquity. Here I have compiled knowledge about Archimedes’ inventions, the numerous fields of science and mathematics he created, discussions of many of his finished works—and my own research that extends and applies Archimedean principles to 21st century problems. - Chris Rorres
THE ARCHIMEDES PALIMPSEST "The Archimedes Palimpsest is a medieval parchment manuscript, now consisting of 174 parchment folios. While it contains no less than seven treatises by Archimedes, calling it the Archimedes Palimpsest is a little confusing. As it is now, the manuscript is a Byzantine prayerbook, written in Greek, and technically called a euchologion. This euchologion was completed by April 1229, and was probably made in Jerusalem... However, to make their prayer book, the scribes used parchment that had already been used for the writings of other books... Firstly, and most importantly, they used a book containing at least seven treatises by Archimedes. These treatises are The Equilibrium of Planes, Spiral Lines, The Measurement of the Circle, Sphere and Cylinder, On Floating Bodies, The Method of Mechanical Theorems, and the Stomachion. [Contains pictures and a video of the palimpsest.]
Aristophanes of Byzantium (c. 257 – c. 185/180 BC) a Hellenistic Greek scholar, critic and grammarian, particularly renowned for his work in Homeric scholarship, but also for work on other classical authors such as Pindar and Hesiod. Born in Byzantium about 257 BC, he soon moved to Alexandria and studied under Zenodotus, Callimachus, and Dionysius Iambus. He succeeded Eratosthenes as head librarian of the Library of Alexandria at the age of sixty... Aristophanes is credited with the invention of the accent system used in Greek to designate pronunciation... He also invented one of the first forms of punctuation in the 3rd century BC
Aristophanes Of Byzantium Aristophanes was the producer of a text of Homer and also edited Hesiod’s Theogony, Alcaeus, Pindar, Euripides, Aristophanes, and perhaps Anacreon. Many of the Arguments prefixed in the manuscripts to Greek tragedies and comedies are ascribed to Aristophanes... He revised and continued the Pinakes of Callimachus, a biographical history of Greek literature... In editing the work of lyric and dramatic poets he introduced innovations in metrical analysis and textual criticism that were widely adopted by later scholars.
Attalus - Over 25,000 links to Greek & Latin authors on the web Greek and Roman history 322 - 36 B.C. - site contains detailed lists of events and sources for the history of the Hellenistic world and the Roman republic. It includes links to online translations of many of the sources, as well as new translations of some works which have not previously been easily available in English... detailed information about the written sources for Greek and Roman history in the period between the conquests of Alexander the Great and the start of the Roman Empire. Its geographical scope is Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East
Bibliotheca Graeca in Bibliotheca Augustana
Classical Language Instruction Program audio clip of scholars reading classical works in Latin and Greek; excellent way to learn about hexameter
CLASSICS page of links
Classics, a definnition Wikipedia
Ctesibius or Ktesibios or Tesibius (285–222 BC) was a Greek inventor and mathematician in Alexandria, Ptolemaic Egypt. He wrote the first treatises on the science of compressed air and its uses in pumps (and even a cannon). This, in combination with his work on the elasticity of air On pneumatics, earned him the title of "father of pneumatics."
Ctesibius and the Tantalus Cup "While Ctesibius may not be as famous as Archimedes, Aristotle, and Pythagoras, he certainly deserves recognition as one of the world’s first and best engineers. A prolific inventor living in the third century BC, Ctesibius is often referred to as “the father of pneumatics.” He created the first truly accurate water clock, a compressed-air catapult, a water pump, a musical organ that ran on water, and a number of remarkable machines that made use of siphons."
Evolution of Alphabets shows the evolution of Cuneiform, Phoenician, Greek, Arabic, Aramaic, Hebrew, Cyrillic and Latin alphabets into their modern versions
Greco-Roman Authors, Classics Archive "Select an author from the list below to see a list of works by that author. Then, select one of the titles to view the work or follow the "Read discussion" link to participate in a discussion about the work" -- large selection of authors available, including Aeschylus, Aesop, Homer, Horace, Josephus, Livy, Aristotle, Ovid, Julius Caesar, Cicero, Plutarch, Tacitus, many more
GREECE, ANCIENT page of links
GREECE, MODERN page of links
Greek Literature links to full text works
Greek Through the Internet modern Greek lessons
Greek Word covers ancient and modern greek history, places, texts, and tools for learning greek.
Hero of Alexandria ( c. 10 – c. 70 AD) was a Greek mathematician and engineer who was active in his native city of Alexandria, Roman Egypt. He is considered the greatest experimenter of antiquity and his work is representative of the Hellenistic scientific tradition... Hero published a well recognized description of a steam-powered device called an aeolipile (sometimes called a "Hero engine"). Among his most famous inventions was a windwheel, constituting the earliest instance of wind harnessing on land. He is said to have been a follower of the Atomists. Some of his ideas were derived from the works of Ctesibius.
Heron of Alexandria "Heron of Alexandria (c. 10 CE - c. 70 CE) is one of the most fascinating figures in Greek history, standing alongside mathematicians such as Pythagoras, Archimedes and Euclid as a major contributor to the history of science. This fascinating man was a brilliant geometer and mathematician, but he is most commonly remembered as a truly great inventor... This genius built steam engines, programmable computers, robots and surveying instruments, many of which show the workings of a keen and insightful mind, and he is certainly worthy of being mentioned alongside Archimedes, Leonardo Da Vinci and Edison as one of the greatest inventors in human history."
Heron of Alexandria by Michael Lahanas. "Known as Michanikos, the Machine Man, Heron invented the world's first steam engine, developed some sophisticated surveying tools, and crafted handy gizmos like a self-trimming oil lamp. Technically speaking, Heron's clever inventions were particularly notable for their incorporation of the sorts of self-regulating feedback control systems that form the bedrock of cybernetics; like today's toilets, his "inexhaustible goblet" regulated its own level with a floating mechanism. But what really stirred Heron's soul were novelties: pneumatic gadgets, automata, and magic theaters, one of which rolled itself before the audience on its own power, cranked through a miniature three-dimensional performance, and then made its own exit."
Homeric scholarship the study of Homeric epic, especially the two large surviving epics, the Iliad and Odyssey. It is currently part of the academic discipline of classical studies, but the subject is one of the very oldest topics in all scholarship or science, and goes back to antiquity. Purely in terms of quantity it is one of the largest of all literary sub-disciplines: the annual publication output rivals that on Shakespeare... see Scholia.
Kokino "Kokino is a Bronze Age archaeological site in the Republic of Mace'ia... It was discovered by archeologist Jovica Stankovski, director of the national museum... The oldest archaeological finds date from about the 19th century BC, corresponding to the early European Bronze Age. It shows signs of occupation for the period from the 19th to the 7th centuries BC. Finds from the Middle Bronze Age (c. 16th to 14th centuries BC) are the most numerous (mainly ceramic vessels, stone-mills and a few molds). An agglomeration from the Iron Age was discovered in 2009."
Kokino, Ancient Observatory has a cool gallery of photos
Even though the rocky outcropping of Kokino has been in plain
view since the beginning of time, it was only in 2001 that scientists
discovered it was one of the most important ancient observatories on earth.
Korais, Adamantios (27 April 1748 – 6 April 1833) was a Greek humanist scholar credited with laying the foundations of Modern Greek literature and a major figure in the Greek Enlightenment. His activities paved the way for the Greek War of Independence and the emergence of a purified form of the Greek language, known as Katharevousa. Encyclopædia Britannica asserts that "his influence on the modern Greek language and culture has been compared to that of Dante on Italian and Martin Luther on German"
Scholia D in Iliadem. Proecdosis aucta et correctior 2014. Secundum codices manu scriptos Thiel, Helmut van (2014) Scholia D in Iliadem. Proecdosis aucta et correctior 2014. Secundum codices manu scriptos. Elektronische Schriftenreihe der Universitäts- und Stadtbibliothek Köln, 7. Universitäts- und Stadtbibliothek, Köln. ISBN 978-3-931596-83-5
*Textkit resources for studying Latin and Greek... aimed at autodidacts... the books cannot be browsed online, only downloaded... see Perseus Digital Library for many of the same titles.
Wyner, Gabriel. Fluent Forever: How To Learn Any Language Fast and Never Forget It. NY: Harmony Books, 2014. The best book I have ever encountered on learning a language. Incorporates the following links:
"In her provocative essay The Iliad or the Poem of Force, Simone Weil treats Homer's epic as a tableau depicting the disasters and torments of battle. Weil argues that in passage after passage, Homer never tires of showing how the use of force reduces people to nameless things" (John Palattella. "The War of Words." The Nation, Jan. 12, 2004: 34-5).
The PhoeniciansVideo: The Quest For The Phoenicians
CreteVideo: The Minoans Ancient Civilization of Crete
The Ancient Minoans of Crete The Minoan civilization flourished on the Mediterranean island of Crete during the height of the Bronze Age (c. 2000-c. 1500 BCE). By virtue of their unique art and architecture, the ancient Minoans made significant contributions to the subsequent development of Western civilization. However, we still know less about the Minoans than the civilizations of Egypt or Mesopotamia.
The SpartansVideo: The Spartans 1
10 Insane Ways Spartan Boys Were Made Into Warriors The Spartan army was the toughest in the world. Every Spartan man was enlisted, and they were feared around the world. Sparta did away with city walls, believing its men strong enough to make walls useless. It was the only country that Alexander the Great saw and left unconquered—and he never even had the courage to march his men into their land.
Spartan men were warriors because Spartan boys suffered through some absolutely incredible experiences. A child raised in Sparta wasn’t raised by his mother. He was raised by the state, and he was put through an education unlike any other in history.
MathVideo: The Lost Book of Archimedes : Documentary on the Lost Manuscript of the Mathematical Genius
AlexandriaVideo: Bettany Hughes - The Ancient Worlds 1 of 7 Alexandria The Greatest City
Famous Greek ScholarsAdrianus Turnebus (1512 – 12 June 1565) a French classical scholar.. " the greatest Greek scholar of the time."
Adrien Turnèbe (1512 – 12 June 1565)
Montaigne wrote that he "knew more and better, what he knew, than any man in his age or of many ages past"
His works chiefly consist of philological dissertations, commentaries (on Aeschylus, Sophocles, Theophrastus, Philo and portions of Cicero), and translations of Greek authors into Latin and French. His son Étienne published his complete works in three volumes (Strassburg, 1600), and his son Adrien published his Adversaria, containing explanations and emendations of numerous passages by classical authors (Gaia Clementi, La filologia plautina negli Adversaria di Adrien Turnèbe. Studi e ricerche 76.
"Better known as Turnebus (long penult), the Parisian professor Adrien Turnèbe (1512-1565) bequeathed us a gigantic miscellany of observations and interpretations of classical texts titled Adversaria, "random notes" (vols. I/1564, II/1565, III/1573). The most recent reprint, the 1604 Geneva edition, comprises 694 double-columned quarto pages plus indices (available online [at Adriani Turnebi Adversariorum libri xxx). All the good information in the Adversaria has long since been absorbed into our dictionaries, commentaries, grammars, and handbooks, the bad long since discarded. The book's chief claim on our interest today is that in it Turnebus makes repeated reference to a valuable manuscript of Plautus that is no longer extant. This is the famous "codex Turnebi" (also called codex Senonensis or fragmenta Senonensia), designated T, which antedated our earliest representatives of the Palatine family of manuscripts (B, C, and D)."
Articles10 Common Misconceptions About the Ancient Greeks The age in which the Ancient Greeks flourished remains an incredibly revered part of history; they’re known for laying the foundations for much of our modern knowledge of medicine, mathematics, philosophy, politics, and culture.
there is no reason to believe that the Trojan War ever happened... Historians—after much research—have found remnants of what they believe might have once been Troy, and believe that the city could have been attacked and possibly pillaged at some point—but there is no evidence to support all of the popular mythology in regards to the war story.
Trojan War / Battle of Thermopylae
The movie depicts only three hundred brave Spartans standing up to the entire Persian army, which is also inaccurate. When the battle started the Spartan force actually had seven thousand people backing them up. On the last day of the battle they were still fourteen hundred strong—three hundred of them were Spartans, sure, but there were also four hundred Thebans, seven hundred Thespians and eighty Mycenaeans.
The modern idea of a Spartan soldier is one who does absolutely nothing else but train to fight and kill people, preferably coming home either with their shield or upon it. Many people get the idea that young Spartan warriors spent all their time training and never really had any exposure to women while young, but this is not true.
Young Spartans, while engaged in their military education, still spent much time in activities around girls their age while growing up. The truth is also that Spartan warriors did not just fight and train; they also sang, danced and performed in plays. Spartan men also educated young Spartans when they got too old to fight themselves; their lives weren’t merely an endless fight until they died.
Spartan Warriors / Queen Gorgo of Sparta
Many people think of women in the ancient world as being subservient to men, but nowhere was this less true than in Sparta. Spartan women had to do pretty much everything while the men were off fighting, and they were incredibly respected and powerful in Spartan society. Aristotle even wrote mockingly in regards to the high place women had in Spartan society, and their ability to own land.
Spartan women were expected to do most of the child raising, were encouraged to be intellectual and to learn about the arts—and in fact they owned a very large portion of the land in Sparta. It is the stuff of legend that an Athenian woman once asked a Spartan queen why Spartan women were the only women allowed to rule men. The Spartan queen responded: “Because we are the only women who give birth to men.”
The Greeks—especially the Athenians—were well known for being “boy lovers,” or at least that’s what many seem to think. It’s become a common trope to equate pedophilia with the men of Ancient Athens. But the issue is quite a complicated one, certainly much less simple than saying that they either “did” or “didn’t” make love to young boys.
Some believe that pederasty—the relationship between an experienced man and a young one—may have been more of an intellectual mentor relationship, whereby the elder male helped a younger one find his place in society.
Athenian / Ancient Greek Theatre
Many people have misconceptions about Ancient Greek theatre, which often entertained very large groups of people, usually during important festivals. A lot of people misunderstand what the ancient dramas were actually like.
The truth is that the theatre productions in Ancient Greece were very symbolic; to understand a play, you had to have some knowledge of the symbolic significance and mythical background underlying nearly every part of the dialogue. The plays actually included audience participation—much like modern stand-up comedy—and were originally part of religious rites in honor of the Gods.
The Ancient Olympic Games were so popular that they are still held (in a slightly different form, it must be said) around the world today. But there are some common beliefs about these games which are inaccurate.
For starters, many people think of them as existing only in very ancient times—but they were still played even during Roman rule for many years, until Theodosius did away with them in an effort to ensure that Christianity triumph as the religion of the Roman Empire.
Also, women were actually not allowed to watch the Olympic Games at all. The Olympians usually competed while completely nude, and would cover themselves in olive oil to improve the quality of their skin and to make themselves more visually appealing.
Olympic Games / Greek Statues
Many of the Greek statues were actually taken from Greece and put in the British Museum in the 1800s, and many of the rest have been damaged either by violence or simple wear and tear, making them hard to recognize.
The common conception of Greek statues—and architecture, for that matter—is that they appeared unpainted, and that civic squares would flash in the sunlight with brilliant white marble.
But it turns out that the statues and temples are only white because the paint faded from them over time; originally, they were incredibly bright and vibrant. Many of these statues also had bronze attachments and black stone inlaid in white to make eyes stand out more. You can see a variety of other statues in what is likely to be their original form here.
While we all know that the Ancient Greeks were skilled at art, mathematics, philosophy, and many other pursuits, many of us '’t realize how technologically advanced they were.
In the early 1900s, a diver exploring near the island of Antikthyera found several old green lumps of stone that had once been part of a mechanical device. Scientists studied the device, which they have dubbed the “Antikthyera Mechanism,” and discovered that it was capable of quite a few interesting feats.
The device could predict solar eclipses, and was capable of keeping track of the Olympiad calendar cycle. It seems to have had complicated dials and to have kept in sync with both the moon and the sun—making it the first computer. Recent findings suggest that it may have been built by Archimedes, who is well-known for being a mathematical genius.
Greek Technology / Athenian Democracy
Many people have the mistaken notion that Greeks invented modern democracy, and this belief has become incredibly pervasive. But Athenian democracy was very different from any democratic institution today. It was actually one of the few examples of direct democracy in history, in which nearly all matters of policy were voted on (in theory, at least) by all Athenian citizens.
If that sounds reasonable, bear in mind that the citizenship excluded women and slaves, and that foreign-born citizens were also ineligible for the vote. Many among the poor were also unable to take the time away from work necessary to get involved. This effectively meant that only free, adult, and relatively well-off males born in Athens were able to participate—which isn’t exactly representative of the whole population’s interests.
Athenian democracy did have its good points, though, especially when you consider the tyrannous political systems which existed in other parts of Greece at the time. It was an important political innovation, that those who voted did not have to be particularly rich or aristocratic to take part in the most important decision-making.
Books in Greek modern?
ArchaeologyGreek tomb at Amphipolis is 'important discovery'
ClassicsRevisiting ‘The Iliad’ from the women’s perspective Bk.Review, WP By Bethanne Patrick September 6, 2018
Pat Barker’s “The Silence of the Girls” joins the ranks of recent books by women that address the classical era, including Madeline Miller’s “Circe,” Mary Beard’s “SPQR” and Emily Wilson’s translation of Homer’s “Odyssey.”
Barker’s novel, a retelling of Homer’s “Iliad” from the perspective of Briseis — a princess whose capture leads to her historical place as Achilles’s “bed-girl” — not only charts slightly different territory but raises the stakes for all historical writing in that it reminds us to do as Abigail Adams urged her husband: “Remember the ladies.”
Wait, you say: Haven’t we been remembering them for a while, now? Scores of excellent books have been written about women recently, from Dawn Tripp’s “Georgia” (O’Keeffe) to “White Houses” by Amy Bloom (Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok) to the upcoming “The Age of Light” by Whitney Scharer (Lee Miller).
Most of the books written about historical women focus on the famous ones, who are also the most privileged, which leaves underserved women often overlooked. A small percentage of books illuminate the lives of those trapped in class structures or who wear kitchen smocks instead of embroidered corset covers.
In her World War I-era Regeneration trilogy (including “The Ghost Road,” which won the 1995 Man Booker Prize), Pat Barker upended expectations about who a hero might be. The character of Billy Prior was lower class, bisexual and pro-labor rights. In “The Silence of the Girls,” Barker does something similar with women on the home front. Briseis was once a queen, but the only remnant of that status in the book is a purloined embroidered tunic that belonged to her father.
While all of the “big names” appear — Agamemnon, Achilles, Priam, Hector, Helen, Patroclus, Thetis — most of Briseis’s time is spent waiting to be used sexually or in the medical tents attempting to learn something.
Her former world of jewels and unguents has dissipated into foul battle smells (blood, brackish seawater, stale roasted meats) and garments of torn rags. A pawn exchanged between powerful men, Briseis learns to keep her head down and her eyes dry.
Only once does she falter, when she must leave Achilles for Agamemnon: “Achilles cried as I was taken away. He cried, I didn’t. Now, years later, when none of it matters any more, I’m still proud of that. But I cried that night.”
That sentence ends Part I; in Part II, narration from Briseis alternates with chapters from the perspective of Achilles, as he moves toward his fateful fight with Hector of Troy. These passages are as well-written as anything Barker has done before, but she saves her most affecting prose for Briseis. When King Priam arrives to collect his son’s body, he remarks that he does what no man has done before, as he kisses Achilles’s hands, “the hands of the man who killed my son.” Briseis, standing nearby, thinks: “And I do what countless women before me have been forced to do. I spread my legs for the man who killed my husband and my brothers.”
“The Silence of the Girls” is a novel that allows those who were dismissed as girls — the women trapped in a celebrated historical war — to speak, to be heard, to bear witness. In doing so, Barker has once again written something surprising and eloquent that speaks to our times while describing those long gone.
Loeb Catalog Stuff
Aelian (Claudius Aelianus), a Roman born ca. 170 CE at Praeneste, was a pupil of the rhetorician Pausanias of Caesarea, and taught and practiced rhetoric. Expert in Attic Greek, he became a serious scholar and studied history under the patronage of the Roman empress Julia Domna. He apparently spent all his life in Italy where he died after 230 CE.
Aelian’s On the Characteristics of Animals, in 17 books, is a collection of facts and beliefs concerning the habits of animals drawn from Greek authors and some personal observation. Fact, fancy, legend, stories and gossip all play their part in a narrative which is meant to entertain readers. If there is any ethical motive, it is that the virtues of untaught yet reasoning animals can be a lesson to thoughtless and selfish mankind. The Loeb Classical Library edition of the work is in three volumes.
The Historical Miscellany (Loeb no. 486) is of similar nature. In 14 books, it consists mainly of historical and biographical anecdotes and retellings of legendary events. Some of Aelian’s material is drawn from authors whose works are lost.
Aelian’s Letters—portraying the affairs and country ways of a series of fictitious writers—offer engaging vignettes of rural life. These are available in Loeb no. 383.
Aeschylus (ca. 525–456 BCE), the dramatist who made Athenian tragedy one of the world’s great art forms, witnessed the establishment of democracy at Athens and fought against the Persians at Marathon. He won the tragic prize at the City Dionysia thirteen times between ca. 499 and 458, and in his later years was probably victorious almost every time he put on a production, though Sophocles beat him at least once.
Of his total of about eighty plays, seven survive complete. The first volume of this new Loeb Classical Library edition offers fresh texts and translations by Alan H. Sommerstein of Persians, the only surviving Greek historical drama; Seven against Thebes, from a trilogy on the conflict between Oedipus’ sons; Suppliants, on the successful appeal by the daughters of Danaus to the king and people of Argos for protection against a forced marriage; and Prometheus Bound (of disputed authenticity), on the terrible punishment of Prometheus for giving fire to humans in defiance of Zeus.
Aeschines, orator and statesman of Athens, 390 or 389–14 BCE, became active in politics about 350. In 348 he was a member of a mission sent to the Peloponnese to stir up feeling against the growing power of king Philip of Macedon; but in 347, when part of a peace-making embassy to Philip, was won over to sympathy with the king, and became a supporter of the peace policy of the Athenian statesman Eubulus. On a second embassy in 346 to ratify a peace Aeschines’s delaying tactics caused the famous orator Demosthenes and Timarchus to accuse him of treason, a charge which he successfully rebutted in the strong extant speech Against Timarchus.
In 344–3, when Demosthenes accused him again in a speech, Aeschines replied in the fine extant speech having the same title On the False Embassy and was again acquitted. In 336, when Ctesiphon proposed that Demosthenes should be awarded a crown of gold for state service, Aeschines accused him of proposing something which would violate existing laws. At the trial Aeschines’s extant speech Against Ctesiphon was answered by Demosthenes in his masterpiece On the Crown. Aeschines, discredited, left Athens and set up a school of rhetoric at Rhodes. He died in Samos.
As examples of Greek oratory, the speeches of Aeschines rank next to those of Demosthenes, and are important documents for the study of Athenian diplomacy and inner politics.
The five volumes in the Loeb Classical Library edition of Greek Lyric contain the surviving fragments of solo and choral song. This poetry was not preserved in medieval manuscripts, and few complete poems remain. Later writers quoted from the poets, but only so much as suited their needs; these quotations are supplemented by papyrus texts found in Egypt, most of them badly damaged. The high quality of what remains makes us realize the enormity of our loss.
Volume I presents Sappho and Alcaeus.
Volume II contains the work of Anacreon, composer of solo song; the Anacreontea; and the earliest writers of choral poetry, notably the seventh-century Spartans Alcman and Terpander.
Stesichorus, Ibycus, Simonides, and other sixth-century poets are in Volume III.
Bacchylides and other fifth-century poets are in Volume IV along with Corinna (although some argue that she belongs to the third century).
Volume V contains the new school of poets active from the mid-fifth to the mid-fourth century and also collects folk songs, drinking songs, hymns, and other anonymous pieces.
The Library provides in three books a grand summary of traditional Greek mythology and heroic legends. Written in clear and unaffected style, the compendium faithfully follows the Greek literary sources. It is thus an important record of Greek accounts of the origin and early history of the world and their race. This work has been attributed to Apollodorus of Athens (born ca. 180 BCE), a student of Aristarchus. But the text as we have it was written by an author probably living in the first or second century of our era.
In his highly valued notes to the Loeb Classical Library edition (in two volumes), J. G. Frazer cites the principal passages of other ancient writers where each particular story is told and compares the various versions to those in the Library.
Publius Aelius Aristides Theodorus was among the most celebrated authors of the Second Sophistic and an important figure in the transmission of Hellenism. Born to wealthy landowners in Mysia in 117, he studied in Athens and Pergamum before he fell chronically ill in the early 140s and retreated to Pergamum’s healing shrine of Asclepius. By 147 Aristides was able to resume his public activities and pursue a successful oratorical career. Based at his family estate in Smyrna, he traveled between bouts of illness and produced speeches and lectures, declamations on historical themes, polemical works, prose hymns, and various essays, all of it displaying deep and creative familiarity with the classical literary heritage. He died between 180 and 185. This edition of Aristides, new to the Loeb Classical Library, offers fresh translations and texts based on the critical editions of Lenz-Behr (Orations 1–16) and Keil (Orations 17–53). Volume I contains the Panathenaic Oration, a historical appreciation of classical Athens and Aristides’ most influential work, and A Reply to Plato, the first of three essays taking issue with the attack on orators and oratory delivered in Plato’s Gorgias.
Arrian’s Anabasis of Alexander in seven books is the best account we have of Alexander’s adult life. Indica, a description of India and of Nearchus’s voyage therefrom, was to be a supplement.
A student of Epictetus, Arrian took notes at his lectures and published them in eight books (of which we have four: The Discourses) and in the Encheiridion or Manual of Epictetus. Both works are available in the Loeb Epictetus edition.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Arrian is in two volumes.
Aristophanes of Athens (ca. 446–386 BCE), one of the world’s greatest comic dramatists, has been admired since antiquity for his iridescent wit and beguiling fantasy, exuberant language, and brilliant satire of the social, intellectual, and political life of Athens at its height. He wrote at least forty plays, of which eleven have survived complete. In this new Loeb Classical Library edition of Aristophanes, Jeffrey Henderson presents a freshly edited Greek text and a lively, unexpurgated translation with full explanatory notes.
The general introduction that begins Volume I reviews Aristophanes’s career and brings current scholarly insights to bear on the intriguing question of the comic poet as a political force.
In Acharnians, a small landowner, tired of the Peloponnesian War, magically arranges a personal peace treaty and, borrowing a disguise from Euripides, demonstrates the injustice of the war in a contest with the bellicose Acharnians.
Also in this volume is Knights, perhaps the most biting satire of a political figure (Cleon) ever written.
Aristotle, great Greek philosopher, researcher, reasoner, and writer, born at Stagirus in 384 BCE, was the son of Nicomachus, a physician, and Phaestis. He studied under Plato at Athens and taught there (367–47); subsequently he spent three years at the court of a former pupil, Hermeias, in Asia Minor and at this time married Pythias, one of Hermeias’s relations. After some time at Mitylene, in 343–2 he was appointed by King Philip of Macedon to be tutor of his teen-aged son Alexander. After Philip’s death in 336, Aristotle became head of his own school (of “Peripatetics”), the Lyceum at Athens. Because of anti-Macedonian feeling there after Alexander’s death in 323, he withdrew to Chalcis in Euboea, where he died in 322.
Nearly all the works Aristotle prepared for publication are lost; the priceless ones extant are lecture-materials, notes, and memoranda (some are spurious). They can be categorized as follows:
I. Practical: Nicomachean Ethics; Great Ethics (Magna Moralia); Eudemian Ethics; Politics; Oeconomica (on the good of the family); Virtues and Vices.
II. Logical: Categories; On Interpretation; Analytics (Prior and Posterior); On Sophistical Refutations; Topica.
III. Physical: Twenty-six works (some suspect) including astronomy, generation and destruction, the senses, memory, sleep, dreams,life, facts about animals, etc.
IV. Metaphysics: on being as being.
V. On Art: Art of Rhetoric and Poetics.
VI. Other works including the Athenian Constitution; more works also of doubtful authorship.
VII. Fragments of various works such as dialogues on philosophy and literature; and of treatises on rhetoric, politics and metaphysics.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Aristotle is in twenty-three volumes.
In The Learned Banqueters, Athenaeus describes a series of dinner parties at which the guests quote extensively from Greek literature. The work (which dates to the very end of the second century CE) is amusing reading and of extraordinary value as a treasury of quotations from works now lost. Athenaeus also preserves a wide range of information about different cuisines and foodstuffs; the music and entertainments that ornamented banquets; and the intellectual talk that was the heart of Greek conviviality. S. Douglas Olson has undertaken to produce a complete new edition of the work, replacing the previous seven-volume Loeb Athenaeus (published under the title Deipnosophists).
Babrius is the reputed author of a collection (discovered in the 19th century) of more than 125 fables based on those called Aesop’s, in Greek verse. He may have been a hellenised Roman living in Asia Minor during the late first century of our era. The fables are all in one metre and in very good style, humorous and pointed. Some are original.
Phaedrus, born in Macedonia, flourished in the early half of the 1st century of our era. Apparently a slave set free by the emperor Augustus, he lived in Italy and began to write Aesopian fables. When he offended Sejanus, a powerful official of the emperor Tiberius, he was punished but not silenced. The fables, in five books, are in lively terse and simple Latin verse not lacking in dignity. They not only amuse and teach but also satirise social and political life in Rome.
This edition includes a comprehensive analytical survey of Greek and Latin fables in the Aesopic tradition, as well as a historical introduction.
Chariton’s Callirhoe, subtitled “Love Story in Syracuse,” is the oldest extant novel. It is a fast-paced historical romance with ageless charm.
Chariton narrates the adventures of an exceptionally beautiful young bride named Callirhoe, beginning with her abduction by pirates—adventures that take her as far as the court of the Persian king Artaxerxes and involve shipwrecks, several ardent suitors, an embarrassing pregnancy, the hazards of war, and a happy ending. Animated dialogue captures dramatic situations, and the novelist takes us on picturesque travels. His skill makes us enthralled spectators of plots and counterplots, at trials and a crucifixion, inside a harem, among the admiring crowd at weddings, and at battles on land and sea.
This enchanting tale is here made available for the first time in an English translation facing the Greek text. In his Introduction, G. P. Goold establishes the book’s date in the first century CE and relates it to other ancient fiction.
Demosthenes (384–322 BCE), orator at Athens, was a pleader in law courts who later became also a statesman, champion of the past greatness of his city and the present resistance of Greece to the rise of Philip of Macedon to supremacy. We possess by him political speeches and law-court speeches composed for parties in private cases and political cases. His early reputation as the best of Greek orators rests on his steadfastness of purpose, his sincerity, his clear and pungent argument, and his severe control of language. In his law cases he is the advocate, in his political speeches a castigator not of his opponents but of their politics. Demosthenes gives us vivid pictures of public and private life of his time.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Demosthenes is in seven volumes.
Diodorus Siculus, Greek historian of Agyrium in Sicily, ca. 80–20 BCE, wrote forty books of world history, called Library of History, in three parts: mythical history of peoples, non-Greek and Greek, to the Trojan War; history to Alexander’s death (323 BCE); and history to 54 BCE. Of this we have complete Books 1–5 (Egyptians, Assyrians, Ethiopians, Greeks); Books 11–20 (Greek history 480–302 BCE); and fragments of the rest. He was an uncritical compiler, but used good sources and reproduced them faithfully. He is valuable for details unrecorded elsewhere, and as evidence for works now lost, especially writings of Ephorus, Apollodorus, Agatharchides, Philistus, and Timaeus.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Diodorus Siculus is in twelve volumes.
This rich compendium on the lives and doctrines of philosophers ranges over three centuries, from Thales to Epicurus (to whom the whole tenth book is devoted); 45 important figures are portrayed. Diogenes Laertius carefully compiled his information from hundreds of sources and enriches his accounts with numerous quotations.
Diogenes Laertius lived probably in the earlier half of the third century CE, his ancestry and birthplace being unknown. His history, in ten books, is divided unscientifically into two “Successions” or sections: “Ionian” (from Anaximander to Theophrastus and Chrysippus, including the Socratic schools) and “Italian” (from Pythagoras to Epicurus, including the Eleatics and sceptics). It is a very valuable collection of quotations and facts.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Diogenes Laertius is in two volumes.
Early Greek Philosophy
Laks, André & Most, Glenn W.
The fragments and testimonia of the early Greek philosophers (often labeled the Presocratics) have always been not only a fundamental source for understanding archaic Greek culture and ancient philosophy but also a perennially fresh resource that has stimulated Western thought until the present day. This new systematic conception and presentation of the evidence differs in three ways from Hermann Diels’s groundbreaking work, as well as from later editions: it renders explicit the material’s thematic organization; it includes a selection from such related bodies of evidence as archaic poetry, classical drama, and the Hippocratic corpus; and it presents an overview of the reception of these thinkers until the end of antiquity.
Volume I contains introductory and reference materials essential for using all other parts of the edition. Volumes II and III include chapters on ancient doxography, background, and the Ionians from Pherecydes to Heraclitus. Volumes IV and V present western Greek thinkers from the Pythagoreans to Hippo. Volumes VI and VII comprise later philosophical systems and their aftermath in the fifth and early fourth centuries. Volumes VIII and IX present fifth-century reflections on language, rhetoric, ethics, and politics (the so-called sophists and Socrates) and conclude with an appendix on philosophy and philosophers in Greek drama.
Epictetus was a crippled Greek slave of Phrygia during Nero’s reign (54–68 CE) who heard lectures by the Stoic Musonius before he was freed. Expelled with other philosophers by the emperor Domitian in 89 or 92 he settled permanently in Nicopolis in Epirus. There, in a school which he called a “healing place for sick souls,” he taught a practical philosophy, details of which were recorded by Arrian, a student of his, and survive in four books of Discourses and a smaller Encheiridion, a handbook which gives briefly the chief doctrines of the Discourses. He apparently lived into the reign of Hadrian (117–138 CE).
Epictetus was a teacher of Stoic ethics, broad and firm in method, sublime in thought, and now humorous, now sad or severe in spirit: How should one live righteously? Our god-given will is our paramount possession, and we must not covet others’. We must not resist fortune. Man is part of a system; humans are reasoning beings (in feeble bodies) and must conform to god’s mind and the will of nature. Epictetus presents us also with a pungent picture of the perfect (Stoic) man.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Epictetus is in two volumes.
One of Athens’ greatest poets, Euripides has been prized in every age for the pathos, terror, surprising plot twists, and intellectual probing of his dramatic creations. Here are four of his plays in a new Loeb Classical Library edition.
Children of Heracles, probably first produced in 430, soon after the Spartan invasion of Attica, celebrates an incident long a source of Athenian pride: the city’s protection of the sons and daughters of the dead Heracles. Hippolytus triumphed in the Athenian dramatic competition of 428 BCE; in modern times it has been judged to be one of Euripides’s masterpieces. It tells of the punishment that the goddess Aphrodite inflicts on a young man who refuses to worship her. Andromache and Hecuba recreate the tragic stories of two noble Trojan women after their city’s fall.
In this second volume of the new Loeb Euripides, David Kovacs gives us a freshly edited Greek text facing an accurate and graceful prose translation. Explanatory notes clarify allusions and nuances, and a brief introduction to each play is provided.
The History of Herodian (born ca. 178–179 CE) covers a period of the Roman empire from the death of the emperor Marcus Aurelius (180 CE) to the accession of Gordian III (238), half a century of turbulence, in which we can see the onset of the revolution which, in the words of Gibbon, “will ever be remembered, and is still felt by the nations of the earth.” In these years, a succession of frontier crises and a disastrous lack of economic planning established a pattern of military coups and increasing cultural pluralism.
Of this revolutionary epoch we know all too little. The selection of chance has destroyed all but a handful of the literary sources that deal with the immediate post-Antonine scene. Herodian’s work is one of the few that have survived, and it has come down to us completely intact. Of the author we know virtually nothing, except that he served in some official capacity in the empire of which he wrote. His History was apparently produced for the benefit of people in the Greek-speaking half of the Roman empire. It betrays the faults of an age when truth was distorted by rhetoric and stereotypes were a substitute for sound reason. But it is an essential document for any who would try to understand the nature of the Roman empire in an era of rapidly changing social and political institutions.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Herodian is in two volumes.
Herodotus, the great Greek historian, was born about 484 BCE at Halicarnassus in Caria, Asia Minor, when it was subject to the Persians. He travelled widely in most of Asia Minor, Egypt (as far as Assuan), North Africa, Syria, the country north of the Black Sea, and many parts of the Aegean Sea and the mainland of Greece. He lived, it seems, for some time in Athens, and in 443 went with other colonists to the new city Thurii (in South Italy), where he died about 430. He was “the prose correlative of the bard, a narrator of the deeds of real men, and a describer of foreign places” (Murray).
Herodotus’s famous history of warfare between the Greeks and the Persians has an epic dignity which enhances his delightful style. It includes the rise of the Persian power and an account of the Persian empire; a description and history of Egypt; and a long digression on the geography and customs of Scythia. Even in the later books on the attacks of the Persians against Greece there are digressions. All is most entertaining and produces a grand unity. After personal inquiry and study of hearsay and other evidence, Herodotus gives us a not uncritical estimate of the best that he could find.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Herodotus is in four volumes.
Hesiod describes himself as a Boeotian shepherd who heard the Muses call upon him to sing about the gods. His exact dates are unknown, but he has often been considered a younger contemporary of Homer.
The first volume of this revised Loeb Classical Library edition offers Hesiod’s two extant poems and a generous selection of testimonia regarding his life, works, and reception. In Theogony, Hesiod charts the history of the divine world, narrating the origin of the universe and the rise of the gods, from first beginnings to the triumph of Zeus, and reporting on the progeny of Zeus and of goddesses in union with mortal men. In Works and Days, Hesiod shifts his attention to humanity, delivering moral precepts and practical advice regarding agriculture, navigation, and many other matters; along the way he gives us the myths of Pandora and of the Golden, Silver, and other Races of Men.
The second volume contains The Shield and extant fragments of other poems, including the Catalogue of Women, that were attributed to Hesiod in antiquity. The former provides a Hesiodic counterpoint to the shield of Achilles in the Iliad; the latter presents several legendary episodes organized according to the genealogy of their heroes’ mortal mothers. None of these is now thought to be by Hesiod himself, but all have considerable literary and historical interest.
Hippocrates, said to have been born in Cos in or before 460 BCE, learned medicine and philosophy; travelled widely as a medical doctor and teacher; was consulted by King Perdiccas of Macedon and Artaxerxes of Persia; and died perhaps at Larissa. Apparently he rejected superstition in favour of inductive reasoning and the study of real medicine as subject to natural laws, in general and in individual people as patients for treatment by medicines and surgery. Of the roughly 70 works in the “Hippocratic Collection,” many are not by Hippocrates; even the famous oath may not be his. But he was undeniably the “Father of Medicine.”
The works available in the Loeb Classical Library edition of Hippocrates are:
Volume I: Ancient Medicine. Airs, Waters, Places. Epidemics 1 and 3. The Oath. Precepts. Nutriment.
Volume II: Prognostic. Regimen in Acute Diseases. The Sacred Disease. The Art. Breaths. Law. Decorum. Physician (Ch. 1). Dentition.
Volume III: On Wounds in the Head. In the Surgery. On Fractures. On Joints. Mochlicon.
Volume IV: Nature of Man. Regimen in Health. Humours. Aphorisms. Regimen 1–3. Dreams.
Volume V: Affections. Diseases 1–2.
Volume VI: Diseases 3. Internal Affections. Regimen in Acute Diseases.
Volume VII: Epidemics 2 and 4–7.
Volume VIII: Places in Man. Glands. Fleshes. Prorrhetic 1–2. Physician. Use of Liquids. Ulcers. Haemorrhoids and Fistulas.
Volume IX: Anatomy. Nature of Bones. Heart. Eight Months’ Child. Coan Prenotions. Crises. Critical Days. Superfetation. Girls. Excision of the Fetus. Sight.
Volume X: Generation. Nature of the Child. Diseases 4. Nature of Women. Barrenness.
Volume XI: Diseases of Women 1–2.
(Volume IV also contains the fragments of Heracleitus’s On the Universe.)
Here is a new Loeb Classical Library edition of the resplendent epic tale of Odysseus’s long journey home from the Trojan War and the legendary temptations, delays, and perils he faced at every turn. Homer’s classic poem features Odysseus’s encounters with the beautiful nymph Calypso; the queenly but wily Circe; the Lotus-eaters, who fed his men their memory-stealing drug; the man-eating, one-eyed Cyclops; the Laestrygonian giants; the souls of the dead in Hades; the beguiling Sirens; the treacherous Scylla and Charybdis. Here, too, is the hero’s faithful wife, Penelope, weaving a shroud by day and unraveling it by night, in order to thwart the numerous suitors attempting to take Odysseus’s place.
The works attributed to Homer include the two oldest and greatest European epic poems, the Odyssey and Iliad. These texts have long stood in the Loeb Classical Library with a faithful and literate prose translation by A. T. Murray. George E. Dimock now brings the Loeb’s Odyssey up to date, with a rendering that retains Murray’s admirable style but is worded for today’s readers. The two-volume edition includes a new introduction, notes, and index.
Homeric Hymns. Homeric Apocrypha. Lives of Homer
Edited and translated by Martin L. West
Performances of Greek epics customarily began with a hymn to a god or goddess—as Hesiod’s Theogony and Works and Days do. A collection of thirty-three such poems has come down to us from antiquity under the title “Hymns of Homer.” This new Loeb Classical Library volume contains, in addition to the Hymns, fragments of five comic poems that were connected with Homer’s name in or just after the Classical period (but are not today believed to be by the author of the Iliad and the Odyssey). Here too is a collection of ancient accounts of the poet’s life.
The Hymns range widely in length: two are over 500 lines long; several run only a half dozen lines. Among the longest are the hymn To Demeter, which tells the foundational story of the Eleusinian Mysteries; and To Hermes, distinctive in being amusing. The comic poems gathered as Homeric Apocrypha include Margites, The Battle of Frogs and Mice, and, for the first time in English, a fragment of a perhaps earlier poem of the same type called The Battle of the Weasel and the Mice. The edition of Lives of Homer contains The Contest of Homer and Hesiod and nine other biographical accounts, translated into English for the first time.
Martin West’s faithful and pleasing translations are fully annotated; his freshly edited texts offer new solutions to a number of textual puzzles.
Though he occupies a firm place in the canon of the ten Attic orators, Isaeus seems not to have been an Athenian, but a metic (resident alien), being a native of Chalcis in Euboea. From passages in his work he is inferred to have lived from about 420 to 350 BCE. But no contemporary mentions him, and it is from Dionysius of Halicarnassus that we learn he was the teacher of Demosthenes, a fact confirmed by several unmistakable examples of borrowing from or imitation of him by his great pupil.
Isaeus took no part in politics, but composed speeches for others, particularly in cases of inheritance. While he shares with Lysias the merits of a pure Attic and a lucidity of style, Isaeus is more aggressive and more flexible in his presentation; and in these respects he undoubtedly influenced Demosthenes. We learn of the existence in ancient times of at least fifty orations, but all that has come down to us are eleven speeches on legacy cases and a large fragment of a speech dealing with a claim of citizenship.
The importance of Isocrates for the study of Greek civilisation of the fourth century BCE is indisputable. From 403 to 393 he wrote speeches for Athenian law courts, and then became a teacher of composition for would-be orators. After setting up a school of rhetoric in Chios he returned to Athens and established there a free school of “philosophia” involving a practical education of the whole mind, character, judgment, and mastery of language. This school had famous pupils from all over the Greek world, such as the historians Ephorus and Theopompus and orators Isaeus, Lycurgus, and Hypereides. Isocrates also wrote in gifted style essays on political questions, his main idea being a united Greece to conquer the Persian empire. Thus in his fine Panegyricus (written for the 100th Olympiad gathering in 380) he urged that the leadership should be granted to Athens, possibly in conjunction with Sparta. In the end he looked to Philip of Macedon, but died just as Philip’s supremacy in Greece began.
Twenty-one discourses by Isocrates survive; these include political essays, treatises on education and on ethics, and speeches for legal cases. Nine letters are also extant; they are concerned more with public than with private matters.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Isocrates is in three volumes. Volume I contains six discourses: To Demonicus, To Nicocles, Nicocles or The Cyprians, Panegyricus, To Philip, and Archidamus. Five are in Volume II: Areopagiticus, On the Peace, Panathenaicus, Against the Sophists, and Antidosis. Volume III contains Evagoras, Helen, Busiris, Plataicus, Concerning the Team of Horses, Trapeziticus, Against Callimachus, Aegineticus, Against Lochites, and Against Euthynus, as well as the nine extant letters and a comprehensive index.
Josephus, soldier, statesman, historian, was a Jew born at Jerusalem about 37 CE. A man of high descent, he early became learned in Jewish law and Greek literature and was a Pharisee. After pleading in Rome the cause of some Jewish priests he returned to Jerusalem and in 66 tried to prevent revolt against Rome, managing for the Jews the affairs of Galilee. In the troubles which followed he made his peace with Vespasian. Present at the siege of Jerusalem by Titus, he received favours from these two as emperors and from Domitian and assumed their family name Flavius. He died after 97.
As a historical source Josephus is invaluable. His major works are: History of the Jewish War, in seven books (the Loeb edition is in three volumes), from 170 BCE to his own time, first written in Aramaic but translated by himself into the Greek we now have; and Jewish Antiquities, in twenty books (nine volumes), from the creation of the world to 66 CE.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of the works of Josephus also includes the autobiographical Life and his treatise Against Apion.
Libanius (314–393 CE) was one of the last great publicists and teachers of Greek paganism. His story, as presented in his Autobiography and the Life by Eunapius, is supplemented by information from a correspondence of over 1500 items and 64 extant orations. A native of Antioch, he began his teaching career in Constantinople in 340, but soon had to retire to Nicomedeia, where he became acquainted with St. Basil and influential in the development of Julian’s paganism. After a second tenure at Constantinople he returned home to become professor in Antioch in 354, a position which he held, through many vicissitudes, for the rest of his life.
As sophist of Antioch and a devoted exponent of the traditional Hellenic system of education, Libanius remained deliberately and contemptuously unacquainted with Latin, and deplored its growing influence. Naturally humane in outlook and sympathizing with the local bourgeoisie, he criticized bitterly the encroachments and oppressions of the central administration, and the general cruelty of his day. Sincerely pagan in an increasingly aggressive Christian society, he became an influential voice against religious persecution, official or unofficial. The orations on Julian, to whose memory he remained devoted all his life, were composed between 362 and 365, and present Libanius with a congenial subject, revealing him at the height of his powers and influence.
Also available in the Loeb Classical Library is a two-volume edition of Libanius’s Autobiography and Selected Letters.
Lucian (ca. 120–190 CE), the satirist from Samosata on the Euphrates, started as an apprentice sculptor, turned to rhetoric and visited Italy and Gaul as a successful travelling lecturer, before settling in Athens and developing his original brand of satire. Late in life he fell on hard times and accepted an official post in Egypt.
Although notable for the Attic purity and elegance of his Greek and his literary versatility, Lucian is chiefly famed for the lively, cynical wit of the humorous dialogues in which he satirizes human folly, superstition, and hypocrisy. His aim was to amuse rather than to instruct. Among his best works are A True Story (the tallest of tall stories, about a voyage to the moon) and The Carousal or Symposium (philosophers misbehave at a party) (both in Loeb Classical Library volume no. 14); Dialogues of the Gods (a reductio ad absurdum of traditional mythology) and Dialogues of the Dead (on the vanity of human wishes) (both in Loeb no. 431); Philosophies for Sale (great philosophers of the past are auctioned off as slaves) and Timon (the problems of being rich) (Loeb no. 54); The Fisherman (the degeneracy of modern philosophers) and Twice Accused (Lucian’s defense of his literary career) (Loeb no. 130); and, if by Lucian, The Ass (the amusing adventures of a man who is turned into an ass) (Loeb no. 432).
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Lucian is in eight volumes.
Lysias (ca. 458–ca. 380 BCE), born at Athens, son of a wealthy Syracusan settled in Attica, lived in Peiraeus, where with his brother he inherited his father’s shield factory. Being a loyal supporter of democracy, Lysias took the side of the democrats at Athens against the Thirty Tyrants in 404, supplying shields and money. After one political speech in accusation of Eratosthenes (one of the Thirty) in 405, he became at Athens a busy professional speech writer for the law courts. At the Olympic festival of 388 he denounced, with riotous results, the costly display of the embassy sent by Dionysius I of Syracuse and the domination of Sicily by Dionysius.
The surviving speeches of Lysias (about thirty complete out of a very much larger number) are fluent, simple and graceful in style yet vivid in description. They suggest a passionate partisan who was also a gentle humorous man. We see in him the art of oratory young and fresh.
Manetho was an Egyptian of the third century BCE. Born probably at Sebennytus in the Delta, he became a priest or high priest at Heliopolis. Apparently he and a Greek Timotheus did much to establish the cult of Serapis in Egypt. Eight works or parts of works were ascribed to him, all on history and religion and all apparently in Greek: Aegyptiaca, on the history of Egypt; The Sacred Book, on Egyptian religion; An Epitome of Physical Doctrines; On Festivals; On Ancient Ritual and Religion; On the Making of Kyphi (an incense); The Criticisms of Herodotus; and the spurious Book of Sôthis. These survive only as quoted by other writers.
This volume also contains the doubtful Kings of Thebes (in Egypt) and the Old Chronicle.
Marcus Aurelius (121–180 CE), Roman emperor and Stoic philosopher, born at Rome, received training under his guardian and uncle emperor Antoninus Pius (reigned 138–161), who adopted him. He was converted to Stoicism and henceforward studied and practised philosophy and law. A gentle man, he lived in agreement and collaboration with Antoninus Pius. He married Pius’s daughter and succeeded him as emperor in March 161, sharing some of the burdens with Lucius Verus.
Marcus’s reign soon saw fearful national disasters from flood, earthquakes, epidemics, threatened revolt (in Britain), a Parthian war, and pressure of barbarians north of the Alps. From 169 onwards he had to struggle hard against the German Quadi, Marcomani, Vandals, and others until success came in 174. In 175 (when Faustina died) he pacified affairs in Asia after a revolt by Avidius. War with Germans was renewed during which he caught some disease and died by the Danube in March 180.
The famous Meditations of Marcus Aurelius (not his title; he simply calls them “The matters addressed to himself”) represents reflections written in periods of solitude during the emperor’s military campaigns. Originally intended for his private guidance and self-admonition, the Meditations has endured as a potent expression of Stoic belief. It is a central text for students of Stoicism as well as a unique personal guide to the moral life.
Menander, the dominant figure in New Comedy, wrote over 100 plays. By the Middle Ages they had all been lost. Happily, papyrus finds in Egypt during the past century have recovered one complete play, substantial portions of six others, and smaller but still interesting fragments. Menander was highly regarded in antiquity, and his plots, set in Greece, were adapted for the Roman world by Plautus and Terence. W. Geoffrey Arnott’s new Loeb Classical Library edition is in three volumes.
Volume I contains six plays, including the only complete one extant, Dyskolos (The Peevish Fellow), which won first prize in Athens in 317 BCE, and Dis Expaton (Twice a Swindler), the original of Plautus’s Two Bacchises.
Volume II contains the surviving portions of ten Menander plays. Among these are the recently published fragments of Misoumenos (The Man She Hated), which sympathetically presents the flawed relationship of a soldier and a captive girl; and the surviving half of Perikeiromene (The Girl with Her Hair Cut Short), a comedy of mistaken identity and lovers’ quarrel.
Volume III begins with Samia (The Woman from Samos), which has come down to us nearly complete. Here too are the very substantial extant portions of Sikyonioi (The Sicyonians) and Phasma (The Apparition) as well as Synaristosai (Women Lunching Together), on which Plautus’s Cistellaria was based.
Arnott’s edition of the great Hellenistic playwright has garnered wide praise for making these fragmentary texts more accesible, elucidating their dramatic movement.
Pausanias, born probably in Lydia in Asia Minor, was a Greek of the second century CE, about 120–180, who traveled widely not only in Asia Minor, Palestine, Egypt, and North Africa, but also in Greece and in Italy, including Rome. He left a description of Greece in ten books, which is like a topographical guidebook or tour of Attica, the Peloponnese, and central Greece, filled out with historical accounts and events and digressions on facts and wonders of nature. His chief interest was the monuments of art and architecture, especially the most famous of them; the accuracy of his descriptions of these is proved by surviving remains.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of Pausanias is in five volumes; the fifth volume contains maps, plans, illustrations, and a general index.
The philosopher Philo was born about 20 BCE to a prominent Jewish family in Alexandria, the chief home of the Jewish Diaspora as well as the chief center of Hellenistic culture; he was trained in Greek as well as Jewish learning. In attempting to reconcile biblical teachings with Greek philosophy he developed ideas that had wide influence on Christian and Jewish religious thought. The Loeb Classical Library edition of the works of Philo is in ten volumes and two supplements, distributed as follows:
I. Creation; Interpretation of Genesis II and III.
II. On the Cherubim; The Sacrifices of Abel and Cain; The Worse Attacks the Better; The Posterity and Exile of Cain; On the Giants.
III. The Unchangeableness of God; On Husbandry; Noah’s Work as a Planter; On Drunkenness; On Sobriety.
IV. The Confusion of Tongues; The Migration of Abraham; The Heir of Divine Things; On the Preliminary Studies.
V. On Flight and Finding; Change of Names; On Dreams.
VI. Abraham; Joseph; Moses.
VII. The Decalogue; On Special Laws, Books I–III.
VIII. On Special Laws, Book IV; On the Virtues; Rewards and Punishments.
IX. Every Good Man Is Free; The Contemplative Life; The Eternity of the World; Against Flaccus; Apology for the Jews; On Providence.
X. On the Embassy to Gaius; indexes.
Supplement I. Questions on Genesis.
Supplement II. Questions on Exodus; index to supplements.
Of the distinguished Lemnian family of Philostrati, Flavius Philostratus (“the Athenian”), ca. 170–205 CE, was a Greek sophist who studied at Athens and later lived in Rome. He was author of the admirable Life of Apollonius of Tyana (Loeb Classical Library nos. 16 and 17) and of Lives of the Sophists, a treasury of information about notable sophists. Philostratus’s sketches of sophists in action yield a fascinating picture of the predominant influence of Sophistic in the educational, social, and political life of the Empire in the second and third centuries.
The Greek sophist and historian Eunapius was born at Sardis in 347 CE, but went to Athens to study and lived much of his life there teaching rhetoric and possibly medicine. He was initiated into the mysteries and was hostile to Christians. His Lives of Philosophers and Sophists (mainly contemporary with himself) is our only source for knowledge of Neo-Platonism in the latter part of the fourth century.
Of the Greek lyric poets, Pindar (ca. 518–438 BCE) was “by far the greatest for the magnificence of his inspiration” in Quintilian’s view; Horace judged him “sure to win Apollo’s laurels.” The esteem of the ancients may help explain why a good portion of his work was carefully preserved. Most of the Greek lyric poets come down to us only in bits and pieces, but nearly a quarter of Pindar’s poems survive complete. William H. Race now brings us, in two volumes, a new edition and translation of the four books of victory odes, along with surviving fragments of Pindar’s other poems.
Like Simonides and Bacchylides, Pindar wrote elaborate odes in honor of prize-winning athletes for public performance by singers, dancers, and musicians. His forty-five victory odes celebrate triumphs in athletic contests at the four great Panhellenic festivals: the Olympic, Pythian (at Delphi), Nemean, and Isthmian games. In these complex poems, Pindar commemorates the achievement of athletes and powerful rulers against the backdrop of divine favor, human failure, heroic legend, and the moral ideals of aristocratic Greek society. Readers have long savored them for their rich poetic language and imagery, moral maxims, and vivid portrayals of sacred myths.
Race provides brief introductions to each ode and full explanatory footnotes, offering the reader invaluable guidance to these often difficult poems. His new Loeb Classical Library edition of Pindar also contains a helpfully annotated edition and translation of significant fragments, including hymns, paeans, dithyrambs, maiden songs, and dirges.
Plato of Athens, who laid the foundations of the Western philosophical tradition and in range and depth ranks among its greatest practitioners, was born to a prosperous and politically active family circa 427 BC. In early life an admirer of Socrates, Plato later founded the first institution of higher learning in the West, the Academy, among whose many notable alumni was Aristotle. Traditionally ascribed to Plato are thirty-five dialogues developing Socrates’ dialectic method and composed with great stylistic virtuosity, together with the Apology and thirteen letters.
The four works in this volume recount the circumstances of Socrates’ trial and execution in 399 BC. In Euthyphro, set in the weeks before the trial, Socrates and Euthyphro attempt to define holiness. In Apology, Socrates answers his accusers at trial and unapologetically defends his philosophical career. In Crito, a discussion of justice and injustice explains Socrates’ refusal of Crito’s offer to finance his escape from prison. And in Phaedo, Socrates discusses the concept of an afterlife and offers arguments for the immortality of the soul. This edition, which replaces the original Loeb edition by Harold North Fowler, offers text, translation, and annotation that are fully current with modern scholarship.
Plotinus (204/5–270 CE) was the first and greatest of Neoplatonic philosophers. His writings were edited by his disciple Porphyry, who published them many years after his master’s death in six sets of nine treatises each (the Enneads).
Plotinus regarded Plato as his master, and his own philosophy is a profoundly original development of the Platonism of the first two centuries of the Christian era and the closely related thought of the Neopythagoreans, with some influences from Aristotle and his followers and the Stoics, whose writings he knew well but used critically. He is a unique combination of mystic and Hellenic rationalist. His thought dominated later Greek philosophy and influenced both Christians and Moslems, and is still alive today because of its union of rationality and intense religious experience.
In his acclaimed edition of Plotinus, A. H. Armstrong provides excellent introductions to each treatise. His invaluable notes explain obscure passages and give reference to parallels in Plotinus and others.
Plutarch (Plutarchus), ca. 45–120 CE, was born at Chaeronea in Boeotia in central Greece, studied philosophy at Athens, and, after coming to Rome as a teacher in philosophy, was given consular rank by the emperor Trajan and a procuratorship in Greece by Hadrian. He was married and the father of one daughter and four sons. He appears as a man of kindly character and independent thought, studious and learned.
Plutarch wrote on many subjects. Most popular have always been the 46 Parallel Lives, biographies planned to be ethical examples in pairs (in each pair, one Greek figure and one similar Roman), though the last four lives are single. All are invaluable sources of our knowledge of the lives and characters of Greek and Roman statesmen, soldiers and orators. Plutarch’s many other varied extant works, about 60 in number, are known as Moralia or Moral Essays. They are of high literary value, besides being of great use to people interested in philosophy, ethics, and religion.
The Loeb Classical Library edition of the Lives is in eleven volumes.
The historian Polybius (ca. 200–118 BCE) was born into a leading family of Megalopolis in the Peloponnese and served the Achaean League in arms and diplomacy for many years, favoring alliance with Rome. From 168 to 151 he was held hostage in Rome, where he became a friend of Lucius Aemilius Paulus and his two sons, especially Scipio Aemilianus, whose campaigns, including the destruction of Carthage, he later attended. Late in his life, as a trusted mediator between Greece and the Romans, he helped in the discussions that preceded the final war with Carthage, and after 146 was entrusted by the Romans with the details of administration in Greece.
Polybius’s overall theme is how and why the Romans spread their power as they did. The main part of his history covers the years 264–146 BCE, describing the rise of Rome, her destruction of Carthage, and her eventual domination of the Greek world. It is a vital achievement of the first importance despite the incomplete state in which all but the first five of its original forty books have reached us.
For this edition, W. R. Paton’s excellent translation, first published in 1922, has been thoroughly revised, the Büttner-Wobst Greek text corrected, and explanatory notes and a new introduction added, all reflecting the latest scholarship.
Quintus Smyrnaeus’ Posthomerica
the only long mythological epic to survive in Greek from the period between Apollonius’ Argonautica (3rd century BC) and Nonnus’ Dionysiaca (5th century AD), fills in the whole story of the Trojan expedition between the end of Homer’s Iliad and the beginning of the Odyssey, which had been treated only episodically by earlier epic and dramatic poets.
Composing sometime between the late second and mid-fourth centuries AD, Quintus boldly adapts Homeric diction and style to suit the literary, moral, religious, rhetorical, and philosophical culture of the high Roman Empire, and does not hesitate to diverge from the usual versions of the story in order to craft his own narrative vision.
This edition of the Posthomerica replaces the earlier Loeb Classical Library edition by A. S. Way (The Fall of Troy, 1913) with an updated text based on that of F. Vian, and fresh translation, introduction, and bibliography that take account of more than a century of intervening scholarship.
This volume contains the poetic fragments of the two illustrious singers of early sixth-century Lesbos: Sappho, the most famous woman poet of antiquity, whose main theme was love; and Alcaeus, poet of wine, war, and politics, and composer of short hymns to the gods. Also included are the principal testimonia, the ancients’ reports on the lives and work of the two poets.
The five volumes in the Loeb Classical Library edition of Greek Lyric contain the surviving fragments of solo and choral song. This poetry was not preserved in medieval manuscripts, and few complete poems remain. Later writers quoted from the poets, but only so much as suited their needs; these quotations are supplemented by papyrus texts found in Egypt, most of them badly damaged. The high quality of what remains makes us realize the enormity of our loss.
Volume I presents Sappho and Alcaeus.
Volume II contains the work of Anacreon, composer of solo song; the Anacreontea; and the earliest writers of choral poetry, notably the seventh-century Spartans Alcman and Terpander.
Stesichorus, Ibycus, Simonides, and other sixth-century poets are in Volume III.
Bacchylides and other fifth-century poets are in Volume IV along with Corinna (although some argue that she belongs to the third century).
Volume V contains the new school of poets active from the mid-fifth to the mid-fourth century and also collects folk songs, drinking songs, hymns, and other anonymous pieces.
Sophocles (497/6–406 BCE)
Sophocles (497/6–406 BCE), with Aeschylus and Euripides, was one of the three great tragic poets of Athens, and is considered one of the world’s greatest poets. The subjects of his plays were drawn from mythology and legend. Each play contains at least one heroic figure, a character whose strength, courage, or intelligence exceeds the human norm—but who also has more than ordinary pride and self-assurance. These qualities combine to lead to a tragic end.
firstname.lastname@example.orgColby Glass, MLIS