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From Scheria to Ithaca

"I want to focus on Odysseus’s nostos as taking place in a wholly imaginary world. For however deep the roots of Greek nostos in Indo-European myth, the Odyssey stands out in making Odysseus’s return an exclusively imaginary voyage." We are grateful to the Center for Odyssean Studies for permission to share Douglas Frame's paper "From Scheria to Ithaca." Read more

Hair, part 3 | Rituals with hair

"Achilles...went a space away from the pyre, and cut off the yellow flowing lock which he had let grow for the river Sperkheios. ...and said, "... now, therefore, that I shall see my home no more, I give this lock as a keepsake to the hero Patroklos." Who offers their hair and under what circumstances? What is the significance of the river gods? Do customs vary in different regions? How does… Read more

Dogs for the ancient Greeks

Anger [mēnis], goddess, sing it, of Achilles, son of Peleus— disastrous [oulomenē] anger that made countless pains [algea] for the Achaeans, and many steadfast lives [psūkhai] it drove down to Hādēs, heroes’ lives, but their bodies it made prizes for dogs [kuōn, pl.] and for all birds, and the Will of Zeus was reaching its fulfillment [telos]. In this very familiar passage at the start of the Iliad we see… Read more

Book Club | November 2017: Selections from Horace

This month's Book Club discussion, on Tuesday, November 28 at 11 a.m. EST, will be on selections from the poetry of Horace. We will be reading from the Odes, Book 4, which comprises 15 poems, and a selection from the Satires, for example Book 1.4 'A Defence of Satire', Book 1.10 'On Satire', Book 2.1 'On Satire Again', Book 2.6 'Town versus Country'. Read more

Homeric Greek | Odyssey 1.144–148: Couches, chairs, and camera’s choreography

We are pleased to share this segment in the CHS series on reading Homeric epic in ancient Greek. In each installment we read, translate, and discuss a small passage in the original Greek in the most accessible way. In this segment, Gregory Nagy, Leonard Muellner, and Douglas Frame read Odyssey 1.144–148. Topics include couches and chairs, with a close attention to the cinematic qualities of the description, and the effects… Read more