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Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

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Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby modus.irrealis » Fri Jul 17, 2009 1:58 am

The wikipedia article on Harry Potter claims that "The first volume has been translated into Latin and even Ancient Greek, making it the longest published work in Ancient Greek since the novels of Heliodorus of Emesa in the 3rd century AD" and they reference this to http://playalicious.com/reference/news/greek_harry.html which says that the translator made this claim. They don't give his exact words so I'm wondering how to understand the claim. Is it really the longest published work? I'm thinking there were some pretty big histories written after the 3rd century (Procopius' for example). Or is it just the longest work of those that could be called a novel?
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Re: Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby edonnelly » Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:36 am

This WSJ article quotes the translator on the matter:

http://www.opinionjournal.com/la/?id=110005786

The translation is "probably the longest bit of Ancient Greek that's been put together for the last few hundred years," and maybe longer than that--possibly "a millennium or more," Mr. Wilson notes.
The lists:
G'Oogle and the Internet Pharrchive - 1100 or so free Latin and Greek books.
DownLOEBables - Free books from the Loeb Classical Library
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Re: Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby modus.irrealis » Fri Jul 17, 2009 11:26 pm

Thanks for the link. That claim seems more reasonable, although a millennium includes almost five hundred years of the Byzantine empire...
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Re: Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby IreneY » Sat Jul 18, 2009 6:28 am

Surely the Alexiad is longer!
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Re: Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby modus.irrealis » Sun Jul 19, 2009 12:49 am

That's one of the works I thought of as well for the last millennium, but I had a hard time getting numbers to figure this out, although I can't say I did everything possible to find out. But in terms of the English original and the English translation of the Alexiad, the latter is longer (in terms of word count). Whether that means anything, I don't know. I couldn't find a word count for Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- in terms of pages, it's longer than the English original but that could be due to typographic reasons or I assume the average Greek word is longer than the average English word.
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Re: Ἅρειος Ποτήρ -- longest work since 3rd century?

Postby aloimonon » Sun Aug 23, 2009 11:18 pm

I have two guesses concerning Byzantine histories written in (mostly) Attic which might be longer than the Attic version of Harry Potter:

- The History of the Wars by Procopius dates from the 6th century. It encompasses five Loeb volumes, but I'm not sure that it rivals Anna Comnena's work mentioned by Irene. Also, I'm counting it as one work despite the fact that it covers the Persian, Vandal, and Gothic wars respectively.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Procopius

- The History by Niketas Choniates. This might be as long as the Alexiad. Surely both are longer than the Attic edition of Harry Potter.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niketas_Choniates

The work in Greek- amazingly based on the newest edition- can be found here:
(Historia (= Χρονικὴ διήγησις), ed. J. van Dieten, Nicetae
Choniatae historia, pars prior [Corpus fontium historiae Byzantinae
11.1. Series Berolinensis. Berlin: De Gruyter, 1975]: 1­635, 637­655.)
http://www.phys.uoa.gr/~nektar/history/ ... storia.htm

If Byzantine "Koine" Greek is allowed for comparison, then George Synkellos, Theophanes and Zonaras would surely be rivals in length as well.

<OT>
I can barely read over the sack of Constantinople as described by Choniates...to this day I have not read it in full in one sitting. The destruction of rare works of history and the melting/destruction of precious works of art is so disturbing. The Latin sack of Constantinople in 1204 was incredibly destructive and merciless. Concerning my readings, I'm referring to the English translation by Magoulias, not the Greek text.
<\OT>
ἀλλ' ἔγωγε ἐξ αὐτῶν τούτων μᾶλλον αὐτὸν τεθαύμακα, ὅτι ἔν τε ἀλλοκότοις καὶ ἐν ἐξαισίοις πράγμασι αὐτός τε διεγένετο καὶ τὴν ἀρχὴν διεσώσατο. Dio LXXII 36.3
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