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Daryl Hines (ed.): Puerilities - Erotic Epigrams of »The Greek Anthology«

Daryl Hines (ed.): Puerilities - Erotic Epigrams of »The Greek Anthology«

USA 2001, 127 pp., brochure,  17.95
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Elegiac lyrics celebrating the love of boys, which the translator terms "Puerilities", comprise most of the 12th book of "The Greek Anthology". That book, the so-called "Musa Puerilis", is brilliantly translated in this, the first complete verse version in English, it is a delightful eroticopia of short poems by great and lesser-known Greek poets, spanning hundreds of years, from ancient times to the late Christian era. The epigrams – wry, wistful, lighthearted, libidinous, and sometimes bawdy – revel in the beauty and fickle affection of boys and young men and in the fleeting joys of older men in loving them. Some, doubtless bandied about in the lax and refined setting of banquets, are translated as limericks. Fashion changes in morality as well as in poetry. The sort of platonic attachment that inspired these verses was considered perfectly normal and respectable for over a thousand years. Some of the very best Greek poets – including Strato of Sardis, Theocritus, and Meleager of Gadara – are to be found in these pages. The poems range from the lovely to the playful to the ribald, but all are, as an epigram should be, polished and elegant.
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