View Full Version : Greek versus Roman

12-07-2007, 03:23 PM
Homer is Greek poet... so why in this translation are all the names the Roman equivalents?

I read the Stanley Lombard translation (much better if you ask me) and the names were the Greek version. I wanted to find a version online to quote from when writing an essay but I can't seem to find a version that uses the Greek names, which seems quite odd to me. Does anybody know where I can find such a version?


12-07-2007, 06:16 PM
Here is a similar thread ;)


12-07-2007, 08:24 PM
Fagles uses the Greek names in his translation.

12-07-2007, 08:29 PM
Fagles is an excellent translation.

12-07-2007, 09:10 PM
Fagles uses the Greek names in his translation.

Fagles is an excellent translation.

I've only heard a translation of The Aeneid on audiobook by Fagles. From what I can tell, he's a good translator. However, you wont find him online.

I own a nice leather-bound edition containing both The Iliad and The Odyssey, translated by Samuel Butler. In it, there is a list of "Principal Personages of the Iliad, Their Parentage and Position." Perhaps a list with the Greek names and their Roman equivalents will suffice for your endeavors. The following list follows this model: Greek name (Roman name).

Zues (Jove)
Cronus (Saturn)
Poseiden (Neptune)
Hera (Juno)
Athene (Minerva)
Artemis (Diana)
Aphrodite (Venus)
Ares (Mars)
Hephaestus (Vulcan)
Hermes (Mercury)
Odysseus (Ulysses)

Samuel Butler's translation of The Iliad can be found here (http://classics.mit.edu/Homer/iliad.html). His translation of The Odyssey can be found here (http://classics.mit.edu/Homer/odyssey.html).

12-07-2007, 10:00 PM
Homer is Greek poet... so why in this translation are all the names the Roman equivalents?In case you were interested in why translators use the Roman equivalents, it's mostly because of familiarity resulting from tradition. For a long time, everyone in the West learned Latin before they learned Greek (if they learned Greek at all), so everyone was more familiar with the Latin versions of classical names. It made sense, when translating, to use "Paris" instead of "Alexandros" because everyone knew who Paris was, but few people would have known who Alexandros was. Even now, I would bet that far more people are familiar with "Paris" than with "Alexandros". The whole point of translation is to make the words in Greek intelligible to an English speaker (if translating into English), so some translators often opt to use the familiar Latin forms.