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Early Indo-European Texts

Classical Greek

Winfred P. Lehmann and Jonathan Slocum

This page contains a text in Classical Greek with a modern English translation. This particular text and its translation are extracted from a lesson in the Early Indo-European Online series, where one may find detailed information about this text (see the Table of Contents page for Classical Greek Online in EIEOL), and general information about the Classical Greek language and its speakers' culture.

from Homer's Odyssey

ʼΆνδρα μοι ʼέννεπε, Μου̂σα, πολύτροπον, ʽός μάλα πολλὰ
πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ʼέπερσεν·
πολλω̂ν δ' ἀνθρώπων ʼίδεν ʼάστεα καὶ νόον ʼέγνω,
πολλὰ δ' ʽό γ' ἐν πόντῳ πάθεν ʼάλγεα ʽὸν κατὰ θυμόν,
ἀρνύμενος ʽήν τε ψυχὴν καὶ νόστον ἑταίρων.
ἀλλ' οὐδ' ʽὼς ἑτάρους ἐρρύσατο, ἱέμενός περ·
αὐτω̂ν γὰρ σφετέρῃσιν ἀτασθαλίῃσιν ʼόλοντο,
νήπιοι, οʽὶ κατὰ βου̂ς ʽΥπερίονος ʼΗελίοιο
ʼήσθιον· αὐτὰρ ὁ τοι̂σιν ἀφείλετο νόστιμον ʽη̂μαρ.
τω̂ν ἁμόθεν γε, θεά, θύγατερ Διός, εἰπὲ καὶ ἡμι̂ν.
ʼΈνθ' ʼάλλοι μὲν πάντες, ʽόσοι φύγον αἰπὺν ʼόλεθρον,
οʼίκοι ʼέσαν, πόλεμόν τε πεφευγότες ἠδὲ θάλασσαν·
τὸν δ' οʼι̂ον νόστου κεχρημένον ἠδὲ γυναικὸς,
νύμφη πότνι' ʼέρυκε Καλυψὼ δι̂α θεάων
ἐν σπέσσι γλαφυροι̂σι, λιλαιομένη πόσιν εʼι̂ναι.
ἀλλ' ʽότε δὴ ʼέτος ʼη̂λθε περιπλομένων ἐνιαυτω̂ν,
τῳ̂ οἱ ἐπεκλώσαντο θεοὶ οʼι̂κόνδε νέεσθαι
εἰς ʼΙθάκην, οὐδ' ʼένθα πεφυγμένος ʼη̂εν ἀέθλων
καὶ μετὰ οʽι̂σι φίλοισι. θεοὶ δ' ἐλέαιρον ʽάπαντες
νόσφι Ποσειδάωνος· ὁ δ' ἀσπερχὲς μενέαινεν
ἀντιθέῳ ʼΟδυση̂ι πάρος ʽὴν γαι̂αν ἱκέσθαι.

Translation

Tell me, O Muse, of the much-traveled man, who wandered many ways after he had sacked the sacred city of Troy. He saw the cities of many men and learned their mind. Then he suffered woes in his heart on the sea, seeking to save his life and the return of his comrades. But not even so did he save his comrades, although desiring it greatly. They perished through their own folly, fools, who devoured the cattle of Hyperion Helios. But he took away from them the day of return. Of these things tell also to us, o goddess, daughter of Zeus, beginning at any stage.
Then all the others indeed, whoever had escaped sheer destruction, were at home having escaped the war and also the sea. But him alone, longing for his return and also his wife, the queenly nymph, Calypso, splendid among the goddesses, held back in her hollow grotto, desiring him to be her husband. But when the year came as the years revolved, in which the gods had decided he should return home to Ithaca, not even then did he escape woes, even with his friends. And all the gods pitied him except Poseidon. But he raged unceasingly against godlike Odysseus until he reached his homeland.