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Orpheus

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Orpheus

Ann Wroe

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$16.95


ISBN 13: 978-1-4683-0826-6
Trim Size: 5 3/8 x 8
Paperback
Overlook
02/25/2014

Product Description

For at least two and a half millennia, the legend of Orpheus has inspired humanity. Half-man, half-god, musician, magician, theologian, poet, and lover, his story never leaves us.

In this engrossing work, Ann Wroe goes in search of the extraordinary Orpheus, from the forests where he walked and the mountains where he worshipped to the artifacts, texts, and philosophies built up around him. She traces the man, the myth, and the power he has always represented, through the myriad versions of a fantastical life: his birth in Thrace, his studies in Egypt, his voyage with the Argonauts to fetch the Golden Fleece, his love for Eurydice and journey to Hades, and his terrible death. We see him tantalizing Cicero and Plato and breathing new music into Gluck and Monteverdi; occupying the mind of Jung and the surreal dreams of Cocteau; scandalizing the Fathers of the early Church and filling Rilke with poetic verses.

In Wroe’s compelling and unique portrait, Orpheus emerges as not simply another mythical figure but the force of Creation itself, singing the song of light out of darkness, and life out of death.


Praise for Orpheus:

“As captivating as Orpheus’ own mystique…Orpheus will make you realize just how little you know of Greece’s enormous contribution to Western civilization, and just how much more you need to read…In Wroe’s hands, Orpheus delights and amazes." —The Wichita Eagle

“In rich, poetic language, Wroe reflects on the meaning of Orpheus's life, in terms of both its mythological origins and its influence on art and literature… Wroe displays wit, sensitivity, and breadth of knowledge." —Choice

“A book of wonders, learned, playful and passionate.” —Guardian



Ann Wroe has written five books, including Pilate: The Biography of an Invented Man and Being Shelley: The Poet’s Search for Himself. After earning her doctorate in medieval history from Oxford, she joined the Economist in 1976 to cover American politics, and has since held the posts of Books and Arts editor (1988-1992) and American editor (1992-2000). She currently edits obituaries and briefing sections.

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