The ancient Greeks have exercised the greatest influence on Western culture, and we are indebted to them for their artistic, dramatic and philosophical achievements. The Greek ideal of perfection, both intellectual and physical, pervades much of their literature. They were both idealistic and realistic and they contemplated man as a harmonious synthesis of these two attitudes. This anthology contains the most significant and uniquely interesting contributions of its literary legacy. The passages selected are either complete in themselves or are so self-contained as to be readily understandable.
Here, in relevant sections, arranged chronologically, are selections from the poetry of Homer, Pindar, and Sappho, among others; from the drama of Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes; from the philosophy of Plato and Aristotle; from the histories written by Herodotus, Thucydides and Xenophon. Oratory and Satire are represented by Demosthenes, Aesthines and Lucian. Biographical and explanatory notes precede each extract.
Some of the translations have long been standard versions, while others are made by the editor himself. Dr. Wedeck has also edited the companion volume to this book, Classics of Roman Literature.