Wednesday, December 15, 2004
I got tired of printing out pages of the Homeric Hymns from the internet and switched over to Diane Rayor's translation last night. The language is clear and beautiful and Rayor's notes provide context and explanation and many interesting tidbits-Dionysos was premature and twice born; Persephone, certainly not the point of focus in the Demeter hymn, was in the unique position of being able to cross the barriers between the underworld, Olympus, and the earth, and could ensure that the initiates in the Eleusinian Mysteries had both wealth in life and a happy afterlife.
Read about Orpheus in Ovid and Apollo in the Hymns last night and intend to read about Artemis and Niobe and Actaeon in Ovid tonight. I ought to track down the rest of the Apollo myths in Ovid as well, but doubt I can make the time right now. S. is reading the selections as well and is willing to continue over Christmas break, so that means we ought to be able to start the Odyssey in early January. He mentioned earlier in the week that he wanted to read Gilgamesh, so I'm feeling smug about already having it hidden away for him. Only one book for S. and R. this year unless they can come up with some titles on their own.