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Cover image for Aeneid
Format:
Title:
Aeneid
Uniform Title:
Aeneis. English
Author:
ISBN:
9780192832061

9780199231959
Publication Information:
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2007.
Physical Description:
lvii, 468 pages : illustrations, maps ; 21 cm
Contents:
Introduction -- Translator's note -- Select bibliography -- A chronology of Virgil -- Maps -- Aeneid -- Book 1 -- Book 2 -- Book 3 -- Book 4 -- Book 5 -- Book 6 -- Book 7 -- Book 8 -- Book 9 -- Book 10 -- Book 11 -- Book 12 -- Ancestral chart -- Explanatory notes -- Index and glossary.
Summary:
"Written by the Roman poet Virgil more than two thousand years ago, the story of Aeneas' seven-year journey from the ruins of Troy to Italy, where he becomes the founding ancestor of Rome, is a narrative on an epic scale: Aeneas and his companions contend not only with human enemies but with the whim of the gods. His destiny preordained by Jupiter, Aeneas is nevertheless assailed by dangers invoked by the goddess Juno, and by the torments of love, loyalty, and despair. Virgil's supreme achievement is not only to reveal Rome's imperial future for his patron Augustus, but to invest it with both passion and suffering for all those caught up in the fates of others." "Frederick Ahl's new translation captures the excitement, poetic energy, and intellectual force of the original in a way that has never been done before. Echoing the Virgilian hexameter the verse stays almost line for line with the original in an accurate style."--Jacket.
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873 Virgil
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Summary

Summary

'Arms and the man I sing of Troy...'So begins one of the greatest works of literature in any language. Written by the Roman poet Virgil more than two thousand years ago, the story of Aeneas' seven-year journey from the ruins of Troy to Italy, where he becomes the founding ancestor of Rome, is a narrative on an epic scale: Aeneas andhis companions contend not only with human enemies but with the whim of the gods. His destiny preordained by Jupiter, Aeneas is nevertheless assailed by dangers invoked by the goddess Juno, and by the torments of love, loyalty, and despair. Virgil's supreme achievement is not only to revealRome's imperial future for his patron Augustus, but to invest it with both passion and suffering for all those caught up in the fates of others.Frederick Ahl's new translation captures the excitement, poetic energy, and intellectual force of the original in a way that has never been done before. Echoing the Virgilian hexameter the verse stays almost line for line with the original in a thrillingly accurate and engaging style. This is anAeneid that the first-time reader can grasp and enjoy, and whose rendition of Virgil's subtleties of thought and language will enthrall those already familiar with the epic. An Introduction by Elaine Fantham, and Ahl's comprehensive notes and invaluable indexed glossary complement the translation.


Author Notes

Virgil was born on October 15, 70 B.C.E., in Northern Italy in a small village near Mantua. He attended school at Cremona and Mediolanum (Milan), then went to Rome, where he studied mathematics, medicine and rhetoric, and finally completed his studies in Naples. He entered literary circles as an "Alexandrian," the name given to a group of poets who sought inspiration in the sophisticated work of third-century Greek poets, also known as Alexandrians. In 49 BC Virgil became a Roman citizen.

After his studies in Rome, Vergil is believed to have lived with his father for about 10 years, engaged in farm work, study, and writing poetry. After the battle of Philippi in 42 B.C.E. Virgil¿s property in Cisalpine Gaul, was confiscated for veterans. In the following years Virgil spent most of his time in Campania and Sicily, but he also had a house in Rome. During the reign of emperor Augustus, Virgil became a member of his court circle and was advanced by a minister, Maecenas, patron of the arts and close friend to the poet Horace. He gave Virgil a house near Naples.

Between 42 and 37 B.C.E. Virgil composed pastoral poems known as Bucolic or Eclogues and spent years on the Georgics. The rest of his life, from 30 to 19 B.C., Virgil devoted to The Aeneid, the national epic of Rome, and the glory of the Empire. Although ambitious, Virgil was never really happy about the task.

Virgil died in 19 B. C.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 2

Choice Review

"Translating the Aeneid is a humbling experience," laments Ahl (Cornell Univ.), who goes on to confess that "finding an appropriate level of diction has been hard." As The New York Times reported in January 2007, "Virgil is suddenly newsy." Three major new translations of Aeneid have appeared since 2005, including a widely heralded one by Robert Fagles (2006), and another (by Sarah Ruden) is forthcoming. Apparently, a tale of odyssey and war, exile and violence, hate and vengeance can still command attention after two thousand years. The Aeneid resonates because of its humanity, pietas (which Ahl translates as "righteousness"), and ambiguity, not to mention the "manifest destiny" it enfolds. Ahl offers a masterful unraveling of all this, especially the puns (paronomasia), and his brilliant "performance" attempts to echo and imitate the poetic complexities of an ancient and highly sophisticated Latin hexameter. Readers of Ahl's well-crafted lines will come face-to-face with the excitement and energy of Virgil's moving original. Fantham's 40-page introduction will enlighten both new readers and old fans; also helpful are the maps of the Roman world (including Aeneas's Mediterranean itinerary), the select bibliography, extensive glossary, index of proper names, and-- especially--Ahl's 100 pages of explanatory notes. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty. R. Cormier Longwood University


Library Journal Review

Ahl (classics & comparative literature, Cornell Univ.) has previously published translations of Seneca's and Lucan's works and has written books on Sophocles, Lucan, and Ovid. His new translation of this great Latin classic, Virgil's tale of Aeneas's seven-year journey from Troy to Italy, joins recent efforts by Stanley Lombardo (Hackett, 2005) and Robert Fagles (Penguin, 2006). Here, Ahl employs a version of Virgil's hexameter verse, in which the first syllable is accented. Unlike previous translators, he tries to capture some of Virgil's wordplay, puns, and anagrams, aiming to remain true to the original Latin. The overall results are accurate but not as fluent or vigorous as the translations by Lombardo and Fagles. While those translations remain the first choice for general readers interested mainly in The Aeneid's narrative aspects, Ahl's translation is good for those wanting a fuller sense of Virgil's language and poetic artistry. In addition to an indexed glossary of names, Ahl includes notes explaining references; classicist Elaine Fantham offers a substantial introduction discussing Virgil, Aeneas, and The Aeneid. Recommended for all public and academic libraries.-T.L. Cooksey, Armstrong Atlantic State Univ., Savannah, GA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.