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In 2002, the University of Michigan Press published Rodney Merrill's translation of Homer's "Odyssey," an interpretation of the classic that was unique in employing the meter of Homer's original. Praising Merrill's translation of the "Odyssey," Gregory Nagy of Harvard wrote, "Merrill's fine ear for the sound of ancient Greek makes the experience of reading his Homer the nearest thing in English to actually hearing Homer. The translator's English renders most faithfully the poet's ancient Greek---not only the words and meaning but even the voice."
Merrill has now produced an edition of Homer's "Iliad," following the same approach. This form of rendering is particularly relevant to the "Iliad," producing a strong musical setting that many elements of the narrative require to come truly to life. Most notable are the many battle scenes, to which the strong meter gives an impetus embodying and making credible the "war-lust" in the deeds of the combatants.
For many years, until his retirement, Rodney Merrill taught English composition and comparative literature at Stanford and Berkeley. In addition to his translation of Homer's "Odyssey," he is the author of "Chaucer's "Broche of Thebes,""
Jacket photograph (c) 2007 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
"Other competent translations of Homer exist, but none accomplish what Merrill aims for: to convey to the reader-listener in translation the meaning and the sounds of Homer, coming as close as possible to the poetry of the original. Merrill accomplishes this virtuosic achievement by translating Homer's Greek into English hexameters, a process requiring not only a full understanding of the original Greek, but also an unusualmastery of the sounds, rhythms, and nuances of English." ---Stephen G. Daitz, Professor Emeritus of Classics, City University of New York
"This is a faithful and powerful rendition of the original Greek. With his deep understanding of the language, [Merrill] has succeeded in capturing the heroic essence of the Homeric Iliad." ---Gregory Nagy, Francis Jones Professor of Classical Greek Literature and Professor of Comparative Literature, Harvard University, and author of "Poetry as Performance: Homer and Beyond"
Defective, not replaced 10 days after complaint
By Sukhaloka Mukherjee,
This beautiful and lucid verse translation of "The Iliad" by Fagles is considered the authoritative translation by some of the world's best universities. I was overjoyed to find that Penguin has made it available at such a low price.
However, buying this from Infibeam.com seems to be the worst decision I have ever taken. This is because:
1. The book arrived with pen marks on the very first page!
2. The book was cracked and scratched on the spine and every possible corner.
3. After 2 phone calls and 2 emails over 6 days, no attempt has been made to replace the book.
4. I had asked for the replacement of 2 books, out of which "The Iliad" had pen marks and the other did not. The replacement authorization for the other book says that it has pen marks, while no one has yet responded to my request to replace "The Iliad".
5. I received these books on Dec 22 and have filed constant complaints since Dec 23, including pictures of each defect. No one seems to be listening.
I have been a regular customer of infibeam.com for a year, and have never faced something like this before. I must say that it makes me want to pay MRP and just buy books from retail stores again.
One of the first translation
This is one of the very first translations into the English language, done by one of the legends of English literature: George Chapman, who spent almost his entire life devoted to Homer. While the translation is not easily comprehensible, because it is in 16th century English, it is nevertheless a classic worth possessing for all connoisseurs of epic poetry.
Greatest, Cheapest edition from Wordsworth Classics. Provides for interesting reading engaging the readers with the language and paper quality. Thanks to Infibeam for making it happen.
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