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Author Topic: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations  (Read 4479 times)

Mata

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Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« on: July 07, 2011, 02:11:37 am »
Hello!

I am planning on getting some books, particularly the Iliad, the Odyssey, Theogony & the Homeric Hymns; and I was curious does anyone on here have any translations that they prefer? Especially ones that are both readable and yet remain true to the original texts.

I would be greatly appreciative of any recommendations.

Thanks! :D
« Last Edit: February 13, 2013, 01:01:34 pm by RandallS »
" For this feeling of wonder shows that you are a philosopher, since wonder is the only beginning of philosophy..." - Socrates to Theaetetus.
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Nyktelios

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2011, 11:26:02 am »
Quote from: Mata;2429
Hello!

I am planning on getting some books, particularly the Iliad, the Odyssey, Theogony & the Homeric Hymns; and I was curious does anyone on here have any translations that they prefer? Especially ones that are both readable and yet remain true to the original texts.

I would be greatly appreciative of any recommendations.

Thanks! :D


Stay away from anything that rhymes. They are less accurate translations, as Greek poetry didn't rhyme, especially not in English translation. The most recent translations are usually the best, keep away from older ones.

Mata

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2011, 08:47:48 pm »
Quote from: Carnelian;2520
Stay away from anything that rhymes. They are less accurate translations, as Greek poetry didn't rhyme, especially not in English translation. The most recent translations are usually the best, keep away from older ones.

 
That is really fascinating. I never knew that about the rhyming.

Is there a particular version you have read and enjoy? I've only read the W.H.D Rouse trans. of the Iliad. And from what I've heard it's not the best one out there, owing it's age, and stripping down, I suppose.
" For this feeling of wonder shows that you are a philosopher, since wonder is the only beginning of philosophy..." - Socrates to Theaetetus.
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Astani

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2011, 11:56:24 pm »
Quote from: Carnelian;2520
Stay away from anything that rhymes. They are less accurate translations, as Greek poetry didn't rhyme, especially not in English translation. The most recent translations are usually the best, keep away from older ones.

 
That's a shame. I liked how the Orphic hymns on theoi.com rhymed.

Quote from: Mata
I would be greatly appreciative of any recommendations.


Anyway, I'm currently reading The Iliad translated by Robert Fagles. He's best known for his translations of Greek classics. He also won a PEN/Ralph Manheim Medal for Translation.

Nyktelios

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2011, 08:52:05 am »
Quote from: Mata;2760
That is really fascinating. I never knew that about the rhyming.

Is there a particular version you have read and enjoy? I've only read the W.H.D Rouse trans. of the Iliad. And from what I've heard it's not the best one out there, owing it's age, and stripping down, I suppose.

 
I have the Robert Fagles translations of The Iliad and The Odyssey, and the translation of The Theogony and Works and Days by M. L. West, which are pretty decent.

Pain and Light

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2011, 07:25:30 pm »
Quote from: Mata;2429
Hello!

I am planning on getting some books, particularly the Iliad, the Odyssey, Theogony & the Homeric Hymns; and I was curious does anyone on here have any translations that they prefer? Especially ones that are both readable and yet remain true to the original texts.

I would be greatly appreciative of any recommendations.

Thanks! :D

The Evelyn-White translation of the Homeric Hymns is old (read: in the public domain old) but unlike a lot of older translations, it's generally considered to be quite good- Harvard University only retired it from their Loeb's Classics line in favor of a newer translation within the last few years. It can be found on the Gutenberg website. I also have the Michael Crudden translation published by Oxford World Classics, which are more poetic style-wise, but when compared to the Evelyn-White translation don't really differ in what's actually being said.

I would imagine that the Athanassakis translation is also very good, I know that his translation of the Orphic Hymns is very well-respected and hotly sought after.

Just browsing Amazon, I see something on the Orphic Hymns by Gregory Zorzos. I've not read tis one myself, but I feel very comfortable in saying without hesitation, avoid it and anythgin with his name on it like the plague.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2011, 07:28:14 pm by Pain and Light »

Mata

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Re: Your Favorite/Recommended Translations
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2011, 05:13:56 pm »
Quote from: Pain and Light;3410
The Evelyn-White translation of the Homeric Hymns is old (read: in the public domain old) but unlike a lot of older translations, it's generally considered to be quite good- Harvard University only retired it from their Loeb's Classics line in favor of a newer translation within the last few years. It can be found on the Gutenberg website. I also have the Michael Crudden translation published by Oxford World Classics, which are more poetic style-wise, but when compared to the Evelyn-White translation don't really differ in what's actually being said.

I would imagine that the Athanassakis translation is also very good, I know that his translation of the Orphic Hymns is very well-respected and hotly sought after.

Just browsing Amazon, I see something on the Orphic Hymns by Gregory Zorzos. I've not read tis one myself, but I feel very comfortable in saying without hesitation, avoid it and anythgin with his name on it like the plague.

 
Thanks for the input. I'm keeping my eyes out for a cheap copy of the Athanassakis translation of the Orphic Hymns. On Half.com it's something like $250 :(

General reply: I've ended up ordering the Robert Fagles trans. of both the Iliad and Odyssey, along with the Jules Cashford trans. of the Homeric Hymns, and Kerenyi's Gods of the Greeks & the Complete Plays of Sophocles trans. by Jebb.

I've got some reading to do soon :D
" For this feeling of wonder shows that you are a philosopher, since wonder is the only beginning of philosophy..." - Socrates to Theaetetus.
Find me on Goodreads here

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