The World Of Homer – Andrew Lang
In the perpetual running fight about the Homeric Homer, Mr. Andrew Lang has been for some years a most prominent champion. In his latest return to the fray, “ The World of Homer “ (Jazzybee Publishing), he lays about him in a very joyous and triumphant mood. His foemen are all those who hold, in some form or other, that “ the Iliad is a mosaic produced by a long series of Ionian additions to an Achaean ‚ kernel.‘ “ Against them he maintains that “ the Iliad is, in the main, the work of a single poet, as is shown by the unity of thought, temper, character and ethos “ ; that it is “ a work of one brief period, because it bears all the notes of one age, and is absolutely free from the most marked traits of religion, rites, society, and superstition that characterise the preceding Aegean, and the later ‚ Dipylon,‘ Ionian, Archaic, and historic periods in Greek life and art“ Homer is an Achaean poet, composing for Achaean auditors at a time when „the glow of Aegean (late Minoan, Mycenean) culture still flushed the sky.“ In support of his contention he writes nearly three hundred pages under such captions as „The Homeric World in War,“ „Homer and Ionia“ „Bronze and Iron,“ „Burial and the Future Life,“ and „The Great Discrepancies.“ It goes without saying that the argumentation is serious. Some historians have long been in accord with Mr. Lang’s principal views, while differing from him about many details ; but from friend and foe alike the book deserves attention.
The World Of Homer.
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Short biography of Andrew Lang (from Wikipedia):
Lang was born in Selkirk. He was the eldest of the eight children born to John Lang, the town clerk of Selkirk, and his wife Jane Plenderleath Sellar, who was the daughter of Patrick Sellar, factor to the first duke of Sutherland. On 17 April 1875, he married Leonora Blanche Alleyne, youngest daughter of C. T. Alleyne of Clifton and Barbados. She was (or should have been) variously credited as author, collaborator, or translator of Lang’s Color/Rainbow Fairy Books which he edited.
He was educated at Selkirk Grammar School, Loretto, and at the Edinburgh Academy, St Andrews University and at Balliol College, Oxford, where he took a first class in the final classical schools in 1868, becoming a fellow and subsequently honorary fellow of Merton College. He soon made a reputation as one of the most able and versatile writers of the day as a journalist, poet, critic, and historian. In 1906, he was elected FBA.
He died of angina pectoris at the Tor-na-Coille Hotel in Banchory, Banchory, survived by his wife. He was buried in the cathedral precincts at St Andrews, where a monument can be visited in the south-east corner of the 19th century section.
(The text of the last section was taken from a Wikipedia entry and is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.)
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