'Muse, tell me of a man: a man of much resource, who was made to wander far and long, after he had sacked the sacred city of Troy. Many were the men whose lands he saw and came to know their thinking: many too the miseries at sea which he suffered in his heart, as he sought to win his own life and the safe return of his companions.'
Recounting the epic journey home of Odysseus from the Trojan War, The Odyssey - alongside its sister poem The Iliad - stands as the well-spring of Western Civilisation and culture, an inspiration to poets, writers and thinkers for thousands of years since. This authoritative prose translation by Martin Hammond brings Homer's great poem of homecoming to life as Odysseus battles through such familiar dangers as the cave of the Cyclops, the call of the Sirens and his hostile reception back in his native land of Ithaca.
Homer is known only as the author of the The Iliad and The Odyssey, the two epic poems of the Trojan War and its aftermath that mark the birth of Western culture. Nothing is known of his life. Martin Hammond was Head of Classics at Eton College, UK, and subsequently Master in College. Since 1990 he has been Headmaster of Tonbridge School, UK. He is the translator of the Penguin Classics edition of Homer's The Iliad.
Preface Introduction by Jasper Griffin Suggestions for further reading A note on the Greek text Book I: The Gods, Athene and Telemachos Book II: Telemachos and the Suitors Book III: Telemachos in Pylos Book IV: Telemachos in Sparta Book V: Odysseus and Kalypso Book VI: Nausikaa Book VII: Odysseus in Phaiacia Book VIII: Phaiacian Games and Song Book IX: The Cyclops Book X: Kirke Book XI: The Underworld Book XII: Skylla and Charybdis Book XIII: Return to Ithaka Book XIV: Odysseus and Eumaios Book XV: Telemachos Returns Book XVI: Odysseus and Telemachos Book XVII: Odysseus Comes to His House Book XVIII: Odysseus As Beggar Book XIX: Eurykleia Recognises Odysseus Book XX: Insults and Omens Book XXI: The Trial of the Bow Book XXII: The Suitors Killed Book XXIII: Odysseus and Penelope Book XXIV: The Underworld, Laertes, Peace Index