Their Quality and Fidelity Revealed Compared to Homer's Greek His "Iliad" combines the best of modern vernacular with the power of classical eloquence. The “Iliad” and “Odyssey” are composed in a long dactylic line (tumpety-tumpety-tum) that’s poorly suited to the natural rhythms of English. James, I strongly suggest that you try a verse version as it gives an amazing rhythm to the story- … The Iliad is sometimes a struggle to get through -- I much prefer the Odyssey -- but Mitchell's translation (which I'm currently reading) is a pleasure. The Iliad, a major founding work of European literature, is usually dated to around the 8th century BC, and attributed to Homer. Hence I'll not shrink from stating my preferences. You can find a very readable translation of the Iliad into prose by novelist Samuel Butler (1898) on numerous Internet sites, as well as in newly published books. Perhaps it’s more faithful to the rhythms and grammar of ancient Greek. Agreed. Translation proliferation is certainly not among the 10 worst of the anxieties afflicting the modern world, but it is of a piece with others higher up the list. I … You will probably get as many recommendations as you do respondents. Many readers think of "The Iliad" as a daunting text. Translators and scholars have translated the main works attributed to Homer, the Iliad and Odyssey, from the Homeric Greek into English since the 16th and 17th centuries. My favorite translation is the Fagles of both the Odyssey and the Iliad. Caroline Alexander’s translation of the Iliad is published by Vintage, priced £25. I've read a number of translations, and I think his handling of the verses is beautiful and simply THE best. But Caroline Alexander, whose new translation of the classic work by Homer comes out Nov. 24, … Topics The Best Translations of the Iliad? With each translation you notice new or different things; Mitchell's reveals the vast number of similes that I hadn't noticed before. I say this because the literal translation of Πάν μέτρον Άριστον is “all measure the best.” But Fagles’ translation feels more dynamic and vibrant. For modern translations my favorite is Lattimore. Fagles’s Iliad, though, takes liberties with the text that may be too much for some purists. Translations are ordered chronologically by date of first publication, with first lines provided to illustrate the style of the translation. When the men are in battle, skulls get crushed and entrails ruptured with graphic and immediate violence. Yet when the heroes address one another or the gods converse, the language soars … It is available from the Guardian bookshop for £20, including free p&p . I’d guess from this translation that Fitzgerald’s is perhaps more literal. It is an epic poem, written in Ancient Greek but assumed to be derived from earlier oral sources, and tells much of the story of the legendary Trojan War between mainland Greece and the city of Troy in Asia Minor. 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