Adventures Among Books eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 217 pages of information about Adventures Among Books.
And staggered; and whirling he fell, and the meat was scattered around, And the double cup moreover, and his forehead smote the ground; And his heart was wrung with torment, and with both feet spurning he smote The high-seat; and over his eyen did the cloud of darkness float.
“And then it was Amphinomus, who drew his whetted sword And fell on, making his onrush ’gainst Odysseus the glorious lord, If perchance he might get him out-doors:  but Telemachus him forewent, And a cast of the brazen war-spear from behind him therewith sent Amidmost of his shoulders, that drave through his breast and out, And clattering he fell, and the earth all the breadth of his forehead smote.”

There is no need to say more of Mr. Morris’s “Odysseus.”  Close to the letter of the Greek he usually keeps, but where are the surge and thunder of Homer?  Apparently we must accent the penultimate in “Amphinomus” if the line is to scan.  I select a passage of peaceful beauty from Book V.:—­

   “But all about that cavern there grew a blossoming wood,
   Of alder and of poplar and of cypress savouring good;
   And fowl therein wing-spreading were wont to roost and be,
   For owls were there and falcons, and long-tongued crows of the sea,
   And deeds of the sea they deal with and thereof they have a care
   But round the hollow cavern there spread and flourished fair
   A vine of garden breeding, and in its grapes was glad;
   And four wells of the white water their heads together had,
   And flowing on in order four ways they thence did get;
   And soft were the meadows blooming with parsley and violet. 
   Yea, if thither indeed had come e’en one of the Deathless, e’en he
   Had wondered and gladdened his heart with all that was there to see. 
   And there in sooth stood wondering the Flitter, the Argus-bane. 
   But when o’er all these matters in his soul he had marvelled amain,
   Then into the wide cave went he, and Calypso, Godhead’s Grace,
   Failed nowise there to know him as she looked upon his face;
   For never unknown to each other are the Deathless Gods, though they
   Apart from one another may be dwelling far away. 
   But Odysseus the mighty-hearted within he met not there,
   Who on the beach sat weeping, as oft he was wont to wear
   His soul with grief and groaning, and weeping; yea, and he
   As the tears he was pouring downward yet gazed o’er the untilled sea.”

This is close enough to the Greek, but

   “And flowing on in order four ways they thence did get

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Adventures Among Books from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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