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The Trojan Epic: Posthomerica (Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiquity) Hardcover – 29 Dec 2004

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 408 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press; New Ed edition (29 Dec. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801879655
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801879654
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,472,776 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


"Provides a vivid retelling of events associated with the Trojan War subsequent to those outlined in the Iliad, but before those of the Odyssey―a very attractive way of learning about a wide range of the details associated with this most famous of all mythological legends. Dr. James is one of half a dozen of the most accomplished scholars of late Greek poetry in the world. It is especially gratifying to discover that his skill as a translator matches that of his skill as a scholar."

(Peter Toohey, University of Calgary, Alberta)

"James's accessible, lively rendition of Quintus's poem deserves to alter the face of ancient epic studies... He fuses a flexible and nuanced form of the ancient hexameter rhythm with contemporary idiom. His Posthomerica includes a superb introduction, lucid commentary, bibliography, index of the occurrence of proper names, and summaries of the action of each Book... A landmark publication."

(Edith Hall Times Literary Supplement)

"Amazingly, the first full-scale introduction to Quintus and his poem in English."

(Martijn Cuypers Bryn Mawr Classical Review)

"This third-century CE poem―which deals with the events surrounding Homer's Iliad and Odyssey―has been unfairly neglected and even denigrated by scholars more familiar with the Homeric epics. James attempts to rectify this situation in this comprehensive book."


"Provides an excellent and accessible introduction, translation, and commentary for this neglected epic."

(Jean Alvares Classical Outlook)

"Through J.'s industry and scholarship Quintus is served well in this volume, which will generate interest in the Trojan Epic and pave the way for a much-needed literary reappraisal."

(Katerina Carvounis Journal of Hellenic Studies)

"Posthomerica clearly aims to be a work of scholarship."

(Robert Schmiel Mouseion: Journal of Classical Association of Canada)


A vivid and entertaining story in its own right, the Trojan Epic is also particularly significant for what it reveals about its sources - the much older, now lost Greek epics about the Trojan War known collectively as the Epic Cycle. Written in the Homeric era, these poems recounted events not included in the Iliad or the Odyssey. As Alan James makes clear in this vibrant and faithful new translation, Quintus's work deserves attention for its literary-historical importance and its narrative power. James's line-by-line verse translation in English reveals the original as an exciting and eloquent tale of gods and heroes, bravery and cunning, hubris and brutality. James includes a substantial introduction, a detailed and annotated book-by-book summary of the epic, a commentary dealing mainly with sources, and an explanatory index of proper names. Brilliantly revitalized by James, the Trojan Epic will appeal to a wide range of readers interested in Greek mythology and the legend of Troy.

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