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classical studies
Travelling Heroes: In the Epic Age of Homer
 
 
Author
Robin Lane Fox.
Publisher Knopf  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.5 x 6.5 x 1.5 inches
ISBN 9780679444312
Pages/Publication Date 465/2008
Daedalus Item Code 12046
This item is not available.
Description
The 8th century BC was the formative age of the great epics of Homer—a remote and, in some ways, mysterious era. Here the author of Alexander the Great, Pagans and Christians, and The Classical World takes us into that time before Western history to explore questions ranging from the origins of the Greek gods to the spread of classical culture in the Mediterranean world. Both a travelogue and a historical detective story, the book develops a fresh and provocative thesis: that migrants from the Greek island of Euboea settled in specific places both in the Near East and in Italy and that what they found there helped shape their most distinctive myths.

"Oxford classicist [Robin Lane] Fox explores the 700s BCE, the century to which he imputes the composition of the Iliad and the Odyssey. Explaining that this was an era of cultural contact between Greeks—specifically, those from the island Euboea—and residents of the eastern littoral of the Mediterranean Sea, he delves deeply into the nature of that exchange. Aiming to evoke the Euboeans' mind-set, he springs from the archaeological traces of their settlements to the gods and heroes of the Near East they adapted into their own myths. While there is considerable textual explication of Homer and Hesiod involved in Fox's procedure, he pulls the mythical characters from the pages and places them in the physical landscapes with which the Euboeans not only associated them but believed they actively inhabited. So doing lends the appealing impetus of travel writing to Fox's account that aids readers in absorbing the world of pagan belief."—Booklist

 
 
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