Books

Works and Days

Hesiod (and others)

A new verse translation of one of the foundational ancient Greek works by the award-winning poet Alicia Stallings.

The ancient Greeks revered Hesiod, believing he had beaten Homer in a singing contest and that after his dead body was thrown to sea, it was brought back by dolphins. His Works and Days is one of the most important early works of Greek poetry. Ostensibly written by the poet to chide his lazy brother, it recounts the story of Pandora's box and humanity's decline since the Golden Age, and can be read as a celebration of rural life and a hymn to work.

Biography

Hesiod, a contemporary of Homer, probably lived in the eighth century BC in the backwater of Askra, a hamlet in Boeotia, on the Greek mainland. As the probable author of both the Theogony and Works and Days, he is the first self-styled poet in Western literature, the first to tell us his own name and the first to advertise himself as a prize-winning poet.