The Satyricon: AND The Apocolocyntosis

The Satyricon: AND The Apocolocyntosis : The Apocolocyntosis

By (author) Petronius Arbiter , By (author) Lucius Annaeus Seneca , Translated by J. P. Sullivan


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Perhaps the strangest and most strikingly modern work to survive from the ancient world, The Satyricon relates the hilarious mock epic adventures of the impotent Encolpius, and his struggle to regain virility. Here Petronius brilliantly brings to life the courtesans, legacy-hunters, pompous professors and dissolute priestesses of the age and, above all, Trimalchio, the archetypal self-made millionaire whose pretentious vulgarity on an insanely grand scale makes him one of the great comic characters in literature. Seneca's The Apocolocyntosis, a malicious skit on the deification of Claudius the Clod', was designed by the author to ingratiate himself with Nero, who was Claudius' successor. Together, the two provide a powerful insight into a darkly fascinating period of Roman history.

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  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 128 x 196 x 16mm | 199.58g
  • 02 Dec 1986
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London
  • English
  • Revised
  • Revised ed.
  • 0140444890
  • 9780140444896
  • 85,715

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Author Information

J.P. Sullivan has held appointments in Classics or Arts and Letters at the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge, Texas, Buffalo, Minnesota, ad Hawaii. He is the author of The Satyricon of Petronius: A Literary Study, Propertius: A Critical Introduction, Literature and Plitics in the Age of Nero and Martial: The Unexpected Classic.

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Review text

The Satyricon is a fragmented story about some dubious types on a journey, and contains the famous caricature of Trimalchio, the Roman yuppie who gives dinner parties of fabulous bad taste. It is frank and robust - like the people it was written for. Review by Lindsey Davis, whose books include 'Two For the Lions' (Kirkus UK)

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Back cover copy

For this edition Professor Sullivan has updated his translation and his invaluable literary and historical introductions in the light of the latest research; he has also included all Petronius' surviving verse.

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