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Odysseys of Homer

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By: (c. 8th cen - c. 8th cen)

The Odysseys are a collection of stories about Ulysses' journey home from the war at Troy purportedly written in the 8th century BCE by Homer, a blind poet thought to have lived in the Greek colonies in Asia Minor, possibly at Smyrna. The events described are thought to have occurred centuries before being recorded by Homer, handed down orally since the twelfth century BCE, the golden era of the Greek Bronze Age when the world was populated by heroic mortals and often visited by the Gods. This verse translation in couplets by George Chapman was originally published in 1616, the first translation from the ancient Greek directly to English, although likely influenced by previous Latin translations. Chapman's translation has been admired by many, including John Keats and others. Many of these stories are familiar to us, Ulysses and the Sirens, Circe turning his crew to swine, their escape from the Cyclops on the bellies of his sheep, but Chapman's version includes violent episodes and suggestive innuendo that I don't recall from my childhood days. (Introduction by Fritz)

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