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The Golden Ass (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 28 May 1998

4.1 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; New Ed edition (28 May 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140435905
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140435900
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 359,167 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Lucius Apuleius (2nd Century AD) North African fubulist, who Latinized the Greek myths and legends. He travelled widely, visiting Italy, Asia &c and was there initiated into numerous religious mysteries. The knowledge which he thus acquired of the priestly fraternities he drew on for his Golden Ass.

E.J. Kenney is Emeritus Kennedy Professor of Latin in the University of Cambridge. His publications include a critical edition of Ovid's amatory works. He is a Fellow of the British Academy.


Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By M. Dowden HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 11 Mar. 2008
Format: Paperback
When Apuleius wrote 'Give me your ear, reader: you will enjoy yourself', I don't expect that he thought people would still be enjoying his book centuries later. The story that he gave us has inspired Shakespeare, Boccaccio and Cervantes, amongst countless others.

This story of a man becoming magically transformed into an ass by accident is full of comedy, from slapstick through to satire. Full of incidents with stories in the story, Apuleius takes us through bawdiness to thriller. We hear of sex, fron hetero to gay, to bestiality. We hear of crime from robbery and kidnap, to murder. What we are have is a book that revels exuberantly in life.

Kenney's excellent and lively translation gives to us a book that is like a just published novel. If you thought that books from antiquity were dry and boring you will have to think again after reading this. This book is a must have, and will be enjoyed by teenagers upwards.
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By A Customer on 7 Oct. 2005
Format: Paperback
The whole book is very amusing - the highlight for me, however, was the story of Cupid and Psyche. This translation is always pacey and exciting - unexpectedly I found the book a real page-turner. I can really only recommend 'The Golden Ass' - you will read it very, very quickly because it is so entertaining. Lucius' character is excellently drawn too, and many readers will be able to sympathise with his constant curiosity, often leading to disaster!
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By Four Violets TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 April 2016
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The truth is I only stuck with this because I had downloaded it onto my Tablet and was then a captive audience on several long train journeys. I found the language challenging, the subject matter repetitive (Lucius being beaten and mistreated by everyone once he is turned to an ass) and the asides where others tell their convoluted tales hard to concentrate on. Apparently it is the is the only Ancient Roman novel in Latin to survive in its entirety, and perhaps had this been a book I studied at school I might have had more understanding and appreciation of it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is 2nd century AD sex and drugs and rock'n'roll.

I'll echo the previous reviews by saying that this is great fun and a really engaging read. The notes are excellent too which really helps in a work like this, drawing out many allusions.

Poetry is often said to be lost in translation but the translator has captured a real sense of the Latin while retaining the fluency of the English.
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