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War and glory

The failures of leadership… the destructive power of beauty… the quest for fame… the plight of women… the brutality of war… Such themes have endured for over 2,700 years in Homer’s classic The Iliad — from the flight of Helen and Paris, to the fury of Menelaus and Agamemnon, to the fight between Hector and Achilles. We sat down with Barbara Graziosi and Anthony Verity, the writer of the introduction and translator respectively, to discuss the new Oxford World’s Classics edition of The Iliad.

How did the Ancient Greek performance tradition inform the text of The Iliad?

What can you tell us about the writer of The Iliad?

How is the anger of Achilles portrayed in the poem?

How is war, violence, and death portrayed in the poem?

Describe the translation process.

Barbara Graziosi is Professor of Classics at Durham University. She has written extensively on Homer.

Anthony Verity taught Classics in several schools in England, his last job being Master of Dulwich College. He has translated Theocritus and Pindar for Oxford World’s Classics, his OWC edition of The Illiad was published in September, and he is currently working on a version of Homer’s Odyssey. Read his previous blog post: “Who needs another translation of Homer’s Iliad?”

For over 100 years Oxford World’s Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford’s commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more. You can follow Oxford World’s Classics onTwitter and Facebook.

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