Homer's Iliad and Odyssey are unquestionably two of the greatest epic masterpieces in Western literature. Though more than 2,700 years old, their stories of brave heroics, capricious gods, and towering human emotions are vividly timeless. The Iliad can justly be called the world's greatest war epic. The terrible and long-drawn-out siege of Troy remains one of the classic campaigns. The Odyssey chronicles the many trials and adventures Odysseus must pass through on his long journey home from the Trojan wars to his beloved wife.
Dante's Divine Comedy is considered to be not only the most important epic poem in Italian literature, but also one of the greatest poems ever written. It consists of 100 cantos, and (after an introductory canto) they are divided into three sections. Each section is 33 cantos in length, and they describe how Dante and a guide travel through Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso.
In words remarkable for their richness of rhythm and imagery, Milton tells the story of man's creation, fall, and redemption, "to justify the ways of God to men". Here, unabridged, and told with exceptional sensitivity and power by Anton Lesser, is the plight of Adam and Eve, the ambition and vengefulness of Satan and his cohorts.
The Trojan War is over, and Odysseus, the cunning King of Ithaca, sets out for home, his wife Penelope, and his son, Telemachus. It proves a long, 10-year journey, fraught with dangers.
Seamus Heaney's new translation of Beowulf is a work that is both true to the original poem and an expression of something fundamental to Heaney's own creative gift.One of the great classics of English literature, it tells the story of a hero who wins glory and learns wisdom and is then called upon to face a final test against the monstrous. There are obvious parallels to be found in the history of the twentieth century, and Heaney's Beowulf cannot fail to be read partly in the light of his Northern Irish upbringing. But it also transcends such considerations, revealing psychological and spiritual truths that are both permanent and liberating.
One of the greatest works in literature, Dante's story-poem is an allegory that represents mankind as it exposes itself, by its merits or demerits, to the rewards or the punishments of justice. A single listen will reveal Dante's visual imagination and uncanny power to make the spiritual visible.
"A roller coaster of scenes and language"
A masterly new recording by Ralph Fiennes. Four Quartets is the culminating achievement of T. S. Eliot's career as a poet. While containing some of the most musical and unforgettable passages in 20th-century poetry, its four parts, 'Burnt Norton', 'East Coker', 'The Dry Salvages' and 'Little Gidding', present a rigorous meditation on the spiritual, philosophical and personal themes which preoccupied the author.
A new version of The Epic of Gilgamesh by Sebastian Lockwood. This is the story of Gilgamesh, King of Kings, who brought back knowledge from before the flood - who loved and lost his companion Enkidu and had to find out why we die. The Epic of Gilgamesh was written on clay tablets over 4,000 years ago, in what is today Baghdad Iraq - the Biblical Garden of Eden between the Tigris and the Euphrates. Lockwood gives a passionate reading from a text that faithfully follows the original.
The masterpiece of Rome's greatest poet, Virgil's Aeneid has inspired generations of readers and holds a central place in Western literature. The epic tells the story of a group of refugees from the ruined city of Troy, whose attempts to reach a promised land in the West are continually frustrated by the hostile goddess Juno. Finally reaching Italy, their leader, Aeneas, is forced to fight a bitter war against the natives to establish the foundations from which Rome is destined to rise.
When the mysterious Green Knight arrives unbidden at the Round Table one Christmas, only Gawain is brave enough to take up his challenge.... This story, first told in the 1400s, is one of the most enthralling, dramatic and beloved poems in the English tradition. Now, in Simon Armitage, the poem has found its perfect modern translator. Armitage's retelling of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight captures all of the magic and wonderful storytelling of the original while also revitalising it.
Le tre cantiche inì un unico audiolibro, precedute da riassunti e seguiti da note storiche esplicative del testo.
Ovid's sensuous and witty poem brings together a dazzling array of mythological tales, ingeniously linked by the idea of transformation, often as a result of love or lust, in which men and women find themselves magically changed into new and sometimes extraordinary beings. Beginning with the creation of the world and ending with the deification of Augustus, Ovid interweaves many of the best known myths and legends of ancient Greece and Rome.
Evgenii Onegin is best known in the West through Tchaikovsky's opera Eugene Onegin. But the original narrative poem (consisting of 389 stanzas, the form of which has become known as the "Pushkin sonnet") is one of the landmarks of Russian literature. In the poem, the eponymous hero repudiates love, only to later experience the pain of rejection himself. Pushkin's unique style proves timeless in its exploration of love, life, passion, jealousy, and the consequences of social convention.
These are masterly readings, by renowned thespian Paul Schofield, of two substantial works of poetry by T.S. Eliot.
"The 20th century"
This remarkable poem, dedicated to Queen Elizabeth I, was Spenser's finest achievement. The first epic poem in modern English, The Faerie Queene combines dramatic narratives of chivalrous adventure with exquisite and picturesque episodes of pageantry. At the same time, Spenser is expounding a deeply-felt allegory of the eternal struggle between Truth and Error....
The poetry of Burns (1759-96) is characterised by its disarming honesty and humanity, and by the poet's remarkable lyric gift. Angry or compassionate, sentimental or satirical, romantic or bawdy, Burns's poetry transcends the Scottish dialect in which it is written to speak to all of us.
For anyone who's in love - or hopes to be - what greater celebration could there be than to hear the world's greatest love poetry read lovingly by Richard Armitage? With 15 poems by William Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and more, Classic Love Poems is a listening treat for Valentine's Day - or any day.
"Beautiful performance and very soothing"
Walt Whitman said, "...poetry is the voice of the nation, expressing its deepest concerns, ambitions and longings," which is certainly true of the great classic poetry of America. This wide-ranging anthology, from the earliest poets of the 16th century to the present day, reflects the changing preoccupations and visions of Americans, including Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, E.E. Cummings, and more.
Homer's masterpiece tells the story of Odysseus, the ideal Greek hero, as he travels home to Ithaca after the Trojan War, a journey of 10 years and countless thrilling adventures. Rich in Greek folklore and myth, featuring gods and goddesses, monsters and sorceresses, The Odyssey has enchanted listeners around the world for thousands of years.
Nearly 150 years since his poetry was first published, Lear's nonsense rhymes are still popular today. In this lively and colorful audiobook recording, Derek Jacobi reads Lear's most famous poems and most fantastic creations, including "The Owl and the Pussy-Cat", "The Daddy Long-Legs and the Fly", "The Jumblies", "The Dong with the Luminous Nose", and a collection of assorted limericks.
The wonderful Little Voice of Jane Horrocks brings this exclusive downloadable audiobook collection of your favourite childhood nursery rhymes out of the dust covers of Mother Goose's books and into strange and merry life. The nursery rhymes that make up our collection are taken from the original Mother Goose rhymes. They are the classics from our childhood, with all the original verses and all the parts of rhymes that one usually hums over due to having forgotten the words.
'The Rape of the Lock' was one of Alexander Pope's most popular poems. It was a satirical attempt to reconcile the real-life warring of two Catholic families whose feud had started with the supposed nicking of a lock of hair from the undeniably beautiful head of Arabella Fermor by her admirer, Lord Petre.
The love affair between Elizabeth Barrett-Browning and Robert Browning is one of the most famous in literature. It begins in 1844 with Elizabeth Barrett, closeted in her room for five years through ill health and forbidden from marrying by her nonconformist father, publishing the most recent of her highly successful literary works, a collection of poetry. The poems prompt a letter from Robert Browning in praise of her work, which so touches her that she agrees to let him into her voluntary seclusion.
In his own inimitable style, Terry Jones leads you through Chaucer's filthy and very funny tale of adultery, the feared coming of the second flood and burnt bums. The Canterbury Tales broke the literary mould in many ways. It established English as an acceptable language for literature, where previously it had been almost exclusively Latin or Norman French. It was also one of the first books to create a link between all the pieces of work in a literary collection.
The epic story of this hero's battle against dragons, monsters, and their mothers is particularly suited to being recorded as an audiobook given that for the first 300 years of its existence it was only ever spoken. The first known (and indeed the only surviving manuscript) of the poem was written in AD 1,000. It survived Henry VIII's attempts to destroy it (as a religious artifact) and a catastrophic fire that destroyed many other historical British documents.
A collection of Rosetti's most well known and loved poetry. Alongside the famous beauty of Rosetti's 'In the Bleak Midwinter', 'Goblin Market' is a deceptively simple poem. The story of two sisters and their temptation, punishment and redemption, written in Christina Rosetti's characteristically songlike poetry, is easily passed over as a fable or fairy story. But there are several layers more to discover in this most intriguing of poems.
Annie and Willie's Prayer was written by Sophia P. Snow in 1884 and has since become a family tradition for many. It's a heartwarming story of how two children help teach their father the true meaning of Christmas.
A collection of poems written by the revered American poet, essayist, and journalist. Included are selections from this most famous work, Leaves of Grass, as well as Drum Taps and Songs of Parting.
Poems by Emily Dickinson is a compilation of the poetry of Emily Dickinson in three different series, each composed of the following subjects: Life, Love, Nature, Time, and Eternity.
The notoriously reclusive New England poet broke all the rules of Victorian-era poetry to create a new, uniquely American style. Despite the fact that the majority of the poems recited here were never published in her lifetime, Dickinson remains one of the most influential voices in American literature.
Homer's epic poem, written near the end of eighth century BC in Greece, follows the hero Odysseus as he journeys home after the fall of Troy. Many scholars believe that The Odyssey was originally composed as an oral tradition and was more likely meant to be heard than read, making it a great listen.