The bite and wit of two of antiquity's best satirists are captured here in a new Loeb Classical Library edition, a vivid and vigorous translation facing the Latin text.
Persius (34-62 CE) and Juvenal (writing maybe 60 years later) were heirs to the style of Latin verse satire developed by Lucilius and Horace, a tradition mined in Susanna Braund's introduction and notes. Her notes also give guidance to the literary and historical allusions that pepper Persius's and Juvenal's satirical poems--which were clearly aimed at a sophisticated urban audience. Both poets adopt the mask of an angry man, and sharp criticism of the society in which they live is combined with flashes of sardonic humor in their satires. Whether targeting common and uncommon vices, the foolishness of prayers, the abuse of power by emperors and the Roman elite, the folly and depravity of Roman wives, or decadence, materialism, and corruption, their tone is generally one of righteous indignation.
Juvenal and Persius are seminal as well as stellar figures in the history of satirical writing. Juvenal especially had a lasting influence on English writers of the Renaissance and succeeding centuries.
It is a pleasure to see that nowadays acclaimed specialists take honour in preparing editions for the Loeb Classical Library. S. Braund has greatly advanced the study of Roman satirists with a number of important articles and monographs...So her name as the editor of this volume is more or less a warrant for the highest possible quality. The introduction is, in a word, magnificent: in merely 39 Loeb pages, S. Braund manages to give a broad, relevant overview of the whole genre, its origins and earliest representatives, while also setting the tone for a more modern approach of Roman satire as a genre in which the poet creates satiric mouthpieces (personae), who play a specific, exaggerated role rather than voicing the author's personal views. Persius and Juvenal are also presented, in 12 succinct but very helpful pages...The text reads as smoothly and easily as if it had been written without any special effort--mostly a mark of excellence and a sign of meticulous work...The texts of Persius and Juvenal are, no doubt, the most important part of the book. And here too, everything is truly excellent. Every text is preceded by a short introductory paragraph, setting out the general outline of the poem and adding some cautious general remarks about its aims and style...In her prose translation, S. Braund has consciously and explicitly avoided both old fashioned words (to mention one example, she even objects to 'therefore') and trendy idiom: the book is intended 'for a long shelf life' (p.vii). She has succeeded remarkably well in her task...So is there anything in this book that is less than perfect? Hardly, I would say...This volume is a truly great achievement, a most welcome addition to the Loeb Classical Library, and a must-buy for all institutional and private libraries of Latin literature.-- (11/26/2004)
Series: Loeb Classical Library
Number Of Pages: 512
Published: 15th October 2004
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 17.1 x 11.9
Weight (kg): 0.4
Edition Number: 91
Edition Type: New edition