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Dialogues of the Dead. Dialogues of the Sea-Gods. Dialogues of the Gods. Dialogues of the Courtesans

Dialogues of the Dead. Dialogues of the Sea-Gods. Dialogues of the Gods. Dialogues of the Courtesans

Lucian

Translated by M. D. Macleod

ISBN 9780674994751

Publication date: 01/01/1961

Antiquity’s satirist supreme.

Lucian (ca. AD 120–190), the satirist from Samosata on the Euphrates, started as an apprentice sculptor, turned to rhetoric and visited Italy and Gaul as a successful traveling lecturer before settling in Athens and developing his original brand of satire. Late in life he fell on hard times and accepted an official post in Egypt.

Although notable for the Attic purity and elegance of his Greek and his literary versatility, Lucian is chiefly famed for the lively, cynical wit of the humorous dialogues in which he satirizes human folly, superstition, and hypocrisy. His aim was to amuse rather than to instruct. Among his best works are A True Story (the tallest of tall tales about a voyage to the moon), Dialogues of the Gods (a "reductio ad absurdum" of traditional mythology), Dialogues of the Dead (on the vanity of human wishes), Philosophies for Sale (great philosophers of the past are auctioned off as slaves), The Fisherman (the degeneracy of modern philosophers), The Carousal or Symposium (philosophers misbehave at a party), Timon (the problems of being rich), Twice Accused (Lucian's defense of his literary career) and (if by Lucian) The Ass (the amusing adventures of a man who is turned into an ass).

The Loeb Classical Library edition of Lucian is in eight volumes.

Author

  • Matthew Donald Macleod (1922–2010) was Lecturer in Classics at the University of Southampton.

Book Details

  • 496 pages
  • 4-1/4 x 6-3/8 inches
  • Harvard University Press

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