Dante's "Inferno": A Verse Translation

Dante's "Inferno": A Verse Translation


By (author) Sean O'Brien

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  • Publisher: PICADOR
  • Format: Hardback | 160 pages
  • Dimensions: 154mm x 236mm x 32mm | 481g
  • Publication date: 28 April 2008
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0330441108
  • ISBN 13: 9780330441100
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,628,759

Product description

Sean O'Brien's new translation of the Inferno is destined to become the standard English text for many years to come. It is the most fluent, grippingly readable version of Dante's poem yet, and with all the consummate technical skill that is the hallmark of O'Brien' own poetry manages the near-impossible task of preserving the subtle power and lyric nuance of the Italian original, while seeking out an entirely natural English music. No other version has so vividly expressed the horror, cruelty, beauty and outrageous imaginative flight of Dante's original vision. Praise for Sean O'Brien: 'His work is elegiac and satirical, interested in history, politics and the imagination' Independent on Sunday 'A poet of unabashed political engagement, wit and humour' Guardian

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Author information

Sean O'Brien is a poet, critic, playwright, broadcaster, anthologist and editor. He grew up in Hull and now lives in Newcastle upon Tyne. He is Professor of Poetry at Sheffield Hallam University and teaches on the MA Writing course. His five collections of poetry to date have all won awards most recently Downriver (Picador, 2001), which won the Forward Prize for best collection. In 2002, Picador published Cousin Coat: Selected Poems 1976-2001; his book of essays on contemporary poetry, The Deregulated Muse (Bloodaxe), was published in 1998, as was his acclaimed anthology The Firebox: Poetry In Britain And Ireland After 1945 (Picador).

Review quote

"What drew such disparate poets as Amy Clampitt, W. S. Merwin, Sharon Olds, Galway Kinnell, Mark Strand, C.K. Williams, and Alfred Corn into the translating project? The glory of the poem itself, the grand enterprise of making a work written 700 years ago beautiful for a new generation."-- Rebecca Pepper Sinkler, Editor, "The New York Times Book Review""Many hands have made, in the present case, not light but lasting work."-- James Merrill"It seems right that Dante would provide such an unusual meeting ground of cultures, eras, and writers: his voice took in many voices. Curious, questing, and provocative, this literary project should be a signpost to anyone who cares about language."-- "Publisbers Weekly""Virgil's design for Dante, that he will 'grow used/to the sad stench, ' for 'after a short while/human senses numb, ' does not extend to this volume's readers; our senses are continually jostled and primed by the unexpected shifts in style."-- "The New Yorker"

Back cover copy

praise for Sean O'Brien: 'The bard of urban Britain' "The Times" 'His work is elegiac and satirical, interested in history, politics and the imagination' "Independent on Sunday" 'A poet of unabashed political engagement, wit and humour' "Guardian"