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Odysseus Unbound: The Search for Homer's Ithacaby Robert Bittlestone and James Diggle and John Underhill
Synopses & Reviews
Where is the Ithaca described in such detail in Homer's Odyssey? The mystery has baffled scholars for over two millennia, particularly because Homer's descriptions bear little resemblance to the modern island called Ithaki. This highly illustrated book tells the extraordinary story of the exciting recent discovery of the true location of Homer's Ithaca by following a detective trail of literary, geological and archaeological clues. We can now identify all the places on the island that are mentioned in the epic — even the site of Odysseus' Palace itself. The pages of the Odyssey come alive as we follow its events through a landscape that opens up before our eyes via glorious color photographs and 3D satellite images. Over a century after Schliemann's discovery of Troy, this breakthrough will revolutionize our understanding of Homer's texts and of our cultural ancestors in Bronze Age Greece.
"This book is a gem. Its reconstruction of prehistoric Ithaca has a convincingly Homeric 'look and feel' to it. Reading the Odyssey is unlikely ever to be the same again." Professor Gregory Nagy, Francis Jones Professor of Classical Greek Literature and Professor of Comparative Literature, Harvard University, and Director of the Harvard Center for Hellenic Studies, Washington DC
"This curious, spellbinding book is a masterpiece of writing for the general public. The geological argument in particular is first-class and leaves me in no doubt about the possibility of the theory being proposed." Professor Tjeerd van Andel, Honorary Professor in Earth History, Quaternary Science and Geo-archaeology, University of Cambridge
"A fascinating and compelling book." Library Journal
"Resplendent with hundreds of landscape and satellite images, Bittlestone's freelance investigation is enthralling, accessibly presented, and possibly true — and, like its subject, finds its soul more in the journey than the destination." Booklist
"The rest of this beautifully produced book, illustrated throughout in color, chronicles Bittlestone's full-scale, ultimately convincing attempt to prove this thesis, with the aid of everything from outer-space photography to linguistic, geological, and seismological analysis." Choice
"A sumptuous production, this, with thousands of illuminating illustrations, likewise opulent in valuably synthesising charts of historical and scientific data...stupendous work. A non scientific neutral, I find the geological arguments impressive to overwhelming." Fortean Times
"The reader's reward is truly thrilling detection supported by breathtaking illustration, yielding a revitalized epic whose prime location of Ithaca is made newly recognizable and powerfully evocative." Foreword
Extraordinary story of the exciting discovery of the true location of Odysseus' homeland of Ithaca.
About the Author
Robert Bittlestone studied economics at the University of Cambridge. He is the founder of Metapraxis Ltd, a company specializing in the detection of early warnings for multinational companies. He is the author of numerous business articles and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufacture & Commerce.
James Diggle is Professor of Greek and Latin at Cambridge and a Fellow of Queens' College. His publications include The Textual Tradition of Euripides' Orestes (Oxford University Press, 1991), and Euripidea: Collected Essays (Oxford University Press, 1994), Theophrastus: Characters. He was University Orator at Cambridge for eleven years, and has published a selection of his speeches in Cambridge Orations 1982-1993.
John Underhill is Chair of Stratigraphy at the University of Edinburgh and Associate Professor at the Department for Petroleum Engineering, Heriot-Watt University.
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