Greek poems to the gods : hymns from Homer to Proclus / translated by Barry B. Powell.

  • Oakland, California : University of California Press, [2020]
  • ©2020
1 online resource


Summary note
"The hymn-as poetry, as craft, as a tool for worship and for philosophy-was a vital art form throughout antiquity. Although the Homeric Hymns have long been popular, other equally important collections have not been readily accessible to generations of students eager to learn about ancient religion. Unlike their epic counterparts, the Iliad and the Odyssey, hymns are songs in praise of the gods, but just as the gods have a prominent role in epic, so too do humans and their earthly concerns play an important role in hymns. In reading them we gain valuable insight into life in the classical world. Alongside the early Homeric Hymns, of uncertain authorship, sit the carefully wrought paeans of the great Hellenistic poet and courtier, Callimachus; the mystical body of writings attributed to the legendary poet Orpheus, written down as Christianity began to take over the ancient world; and finally, the hymns of Proclus, the last great pagan philosopher of antiquity, from the fifth century AD, whose intellectual influence throughout the history of the west was profound. Greek Poems to the Gods thus brings together over a thousand years of the ancient Greek hymnic tradition in one volume. Acclaimed translator Barry B. Powell brings these fabulous texts to life in English, hewing closely to the poetic beauty of the original Greek. His superb introductions and notes give readers essential context for reading each hymn, making each work equally accessible to a beginner approaching them for the first time or an advanced student continuing to explore their secrets"-- Provided by publisher
"Arranged...according to each individual deity. All the hymns of Callimachus and Proclus are included and 28 of the Homeric Hymns (out of 34) and 32 of the Orphic Hymns (out of 78), ...cited in rough chronological order: first the Homeric Hymns; then the Hymns of Callimachus; then the Orphic Hymns; then the Hymns of Proclus."--General introduction.
Bibliographic references
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Reproduction note
Electronic reproduction. New York Available via World Wide Web.
Other title(s)
  • Homeric hymns. Selections. English
  • Orphic hymns. Selections. English
  • 9780520972605 (electronic book)
  • 0520972600 (electronic book)
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