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The Axion Esti

Odysseus Elytis

Translated by George Savidis and Edmund Keeley

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Categories: Greek, Translation
Imprint: Anvil Press Poetry
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (112 pages)
(Pub. Dec 2007)
9780856463563
£9.99 £8.99
  • Description
  • Author
  • When Odysseus Elytis was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, the Swedish Academy’s citation singled out The Axion Esti, first published in 1959, as ‘one of twentieth-century literature’s most concentrated and richly faceted poems.’ It can be seen both as a secular oratorio, reflecting the Greek heritage and the country’s revolutionary spirit, and also as a kind of autobiography, in which the spiritual roots of the poet’s very individual sensibility are set in the wider philosophical context of the Greek tradition. In his evocation of eternal Greece, his vision of the war and its aftermath, and his concluding celebration of human life, Elytis is a true voice of our age – a deeply personal lyric poet who speaks for humanity at large.

    Odysseus Elytis
    Odysseus Elytis, born in Crete in 1911, began to publish his poetry in the 1930s. He took part in the campaign against the Italian fascists in Albania in 1940–41. He was one of the most prominent poets of the Greek resistance during the Nazi occupation. The Nobel Prize was awarded ... read more
    George Savidis
    George Savidis was Professor of Modern Greek at the University of Thessaloniki and a Visiting Professor at Harvard. He edited the standard Greek editions of the poetry of Cavafy, Seferis, Sikelianos and Karyotakis, and with Edmund Keeley translated a selection of Cavafy’s ‘unpublished’ poems. He died in 1995. ... read more
    Edmund Keeley
    Edmund Keeley translated the poetry of Cavafy, Seferis and Sikelianos with the late Philip Sherrard. His translations of Yannis Ritsos received the Academy of American Poets’ Landon Award and the EU’s First European Prize. He is a novelist whose non-fiction works include Cavafy’s Alexandria and Inventing Paradise . He lives in ... read more
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