the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

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daivid
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the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by daivid » Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:41 pm

There is a condorcet voting site that allows one to make polls so I have done one
on the most essential Ancient Greek text

https://civs.cs.cornell.edu/cgi-bin/vot ... 16154c1caa
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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by mwh » Fri Jan 12, 2018 2:30 am

The Iliad, inescapably. I’d go so far as to say it’s the only essential one on the list.
With the others, essential to what?
I’d rank the Anabasis at the bottom, but I didn't vote except for the Iliad.

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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by jeidsath » Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:39 pm

If you were to ask the average educated American to describe scenes from the Iliad, none of the examples that he would give you would be scenes from the Iliad. In fact, here are the scenes that he would probably list:

The Trojan Horse
Achilles killed by an arrow to the heel
The Judgment of Paris
Agamemnon killed in the bath

For the Judgement of Paris, what was the ancient version of the story? I have the impression that Herodotus’ and Homer’s version of how Paris got Helen may not have included golden apples and godesses at all.
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daivid
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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by daivid » Fri Jan 12, 2018 6:55 pm

mwh wrote:The Iliad, inescapably. I’d go so far as to say it’s the only essential one on the list.
Well it seems that almost everyone agrees with you so there must be a reason for that but I confess I'm surprised. I have never been able to read more that a few lines in Ancient Greek but even in translation there was such remorseless of the violence has meant that I have never got very far. The Attic playwrights can also be a bit grim but they do seem to have more to say.
mwh wrote: With the others, essential to what?
I’d rank the Anabasis at the bottom, but I didn't vote except for the Iliad.
I intentionally left it open expecting people would rank different things higher for different reasons but instead it has been such a landside that I really didn't have to go off site for the poll - a textkit poll would have done the job just as well.

I did only put Anabasis second but he is a good story teller and quite a lot of it is probably true and even the bits that are a bit suspect are at worse covering up the truth rather than pure fiction.
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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by Hylander » Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:09 pm

there was such remorseless of the violence has meant that I have never got very far. The Attic playwrights can also be a bit grim but they do seem to have more to say.
If you never got very far in the Iliad, it's no wonder you're surprised it comes in first and you don't think it has much to say. And if remorseless violence is a problem for you, you might as well give up trying to read anything in Ancient Greek apart from maybe the New Testament. (Stay away from the Old, though.)

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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by daivid » Sun Jan 28, 2018 4:11 pm

Hylander wrote: If you never got very far in the Iliad, it's no wonder you're surprised it comes in first and you don't think it has much to say. And if remorseless violence is a problem for you, you might as well give up trying to read anything in Ancient Greek apart from maybe the New Testament. (Stay away from the Old, though.)
Well Homer goes is far more graphic then any other Greek writer. Add to that, I was reading it in Ancient Greek so I was lingering over those descriptions far more than I would if I was reading a language in which I was more fluent. I was not of course claiming that I have given Homer a fair chance.
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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by Barry Hofstetter » Mon Jan 29, 2018 4:24 pm

For direct literary influence, the Odyssey. Not so much the prequel.
N.E. Barry Hofstetter
The Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
καὶ σὺ τὸ σὸν ποιήσεις κἀγὼ τὸ ἐμόν. ἆρον τὸ σὸν καὶ ὕπαγε.

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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by ἑκηβόλος » Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:37 am

While I do see the Illiad as a great work of literature in itself and to the ancients, it ranked last in my order of essentials based on its content. It expresses a society based on class, it glorifies the invasion and prolonged occupation of an eastern country by a western one and it talks about the primative superstitious notions of gods and goddesses.

Highest on my list is the Republic, because as an early work of humanistic philosophy it explicitly extols the superiority of reason. The plays expressing the struggle of the human soul against difficult odds and expressing uncensored, realistic and dirty human life as it is rather than as it is idealised as come next on my list. Xenophon's account of unaffliated soldiers struggling for their survival after their betrayal and abandonment in midst of a of a dynastic struggle by royalty ranks slightly higher for me than the defence of ones homeland against foreign imperialist invasion.
Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird!
No hungry generations tread thee down;
The voice I hear this passing night was heard
In ancient days by emperor and clown:
(Keats, Ode to a nightingale, 1819).

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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by certis » Tue Jan 30, 2018 4:12 am

To ἑκηβόλος: I'm afraid you can't read any book if you are looking for political correctness. I think you have not understood the platonic republic if you see it more human and with better values than Homer in the Iliad

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Re: the most essential Ancient Greek text poll

Post by certis » Tue Jan 30, 2018 4:36 am

To ἑκηβόλος: I didn't mean to be rude. My english vocabulary and fluency are too scarce and I can't explain well

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