The Iliad

Narrated by: Derek Jacobi, Maria Tucci
Series: Iliad & Odyssey, Book 1
Length: 8 hrs and 44 mins
4 out of 5 stars (229 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Dating to the ninth century BC, Homer’s timeless poem still vividly conveys the horror and heroism of men and gods wrestling with towering emotions and battling amidst devastation and destruction, as it moves inexorably to the wrenching, tragic conclusion of the Trojan War. 

Renowned classicist Bernard Knox observes in his superb Introduction that although the violence of the Iliad is grim and relentless, it coexists with both images of civilized life and a poignant yearning for peace. 

Combining the skills of a poet and scholar, Robert Fagles brings the energy of contemporary language to this enduring heroic epic. He maintains the drive and metric music of Homer’s poetry and evokes the impact and nuance of the Iliad’s mesmerizing repeated phrases in what Peter Levi calls “an astonishing performance”.

©1990 Robert Fagles (translation) (P)1992 Penguin-HighBridge Audio; 1992 Penguin-HighBridge Audio, Packaging ©

Critic Reviews

“Fitzgerald has solved virtually every problem that has plagued translators of Homer. The narrative runs, the dialogue speaks, the military action is clear, and the repetitive epithets become useful text rather than exotic relics.” (Atlantic Monthly)

“Fitzgerald’s swift rhythms, bright images, and superb English make Homer live as never before…This is for every reader in our time and possibly for all time.” (Library Journal)

“[Fitzgerald’s Odyssey and Iliad] open up once more the unique greatness of Homer’s art at the level above the formula; yet at the same time they do not neglect the brilliant texture of Homeric verse at the level of the line and the phrase.” (The Yale Review)

What listeners say about The Iliad

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Abridged

Heavily edited, cannot follow along with the claimed Fagles translation. Disappointing and confusing. Printed translation very highly recommended but Audible version deceptively described.

51 people found this helpful

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Abridged! Should have read the reviews

This selection should be labeled “abridged” so that you know what you are purchasing. I am disappointed since I wanted the unabridged version.

29 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Two different narrators is annoying...

The narrator for the majority of the story is wonderful. But every fifteen to thirty minutes a different narrator comes in and reads a short excerpt. It's almost as if they forgot to record the whole book in the original session and had to add portions back in. It is annoying at first and only gets more so as the book goes on.

15 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Not full review

Book is not full....!!!!!!!!
How can an incomplete book be uploaded????
Really disappointed...!!!!
Wasted my credit...!!!

12 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Bit dissapointed

Well for sure I’m a homer neophyte but I’ve just finished listening to the rouse translation unabridged which I understand is a Prose translation so in order to ‘go deeper’ into homerville I felt obligated to listen to one of the classic poetry translations (fagles, Lattimore etc) but in this case the story is clearly abridged and I feel the prose does does not have the gravitas of the rouse version. Additionally I feel completely cheated when we wizz through hours and hours of battle in 10mins !

8 people found this helpful

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terrible

the narrator skips parts. You aren't really able to follow along because of it .

7 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Two narrators: he was epic, she was not

Derek Jacobi was amazing in the performance. I say performance because it was that masterfully done. Maria Tucci’s reading was stiff and flat. I couldn’t see the point of her being interleaved into the story. Mostly I just tolerated her until Derek came back. Fortunately the didn’t use her all that much.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Intriguing and full of action but audible skipped some books or chapters from the written version

I checked out The Iliad translated by Robert Fagles from my public library to follow along with audible. However, I realized that a few books or chapters were skipped and I had a hard time finding my place again. Maria would read tidbits and I didn’t know what script she was reading from and then it jumped back to Derek. The chapters listed on audible did not correspond to the written epic. Although book and movie versions often vary in some aspects, from watching the movie Troy, the epic and audible version ended with the burial of Hector instead of what was shown in Troy with Achilles receiving arrows while trying to save Briseis. I wish everything was read and corresponded to the appropriate chapters; however, I’m glad I was able to finish this epic in 3 days with the help of audible.

9 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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NOT A FULL VERSION

THIS VERSION SKIPS AROUND IM SO FRUSTRATED. it’s hard to follow end it doesn’t even married the entire book

8 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Droll narration

Very undynamic, tune-out narration. When the battles sound the same as Nestor's prattling, you've an issue.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • somethingorother
  • 01-11-19

5* to Fagles and Jacobi - 1* to Audible/Penguin

This is a very accessible and enjoyable translation so it’s a great shame that it’s only available as an abridged audiobook because Derek Jacobi’s reading is an absolute delight.
I originally had this on tape and know that it was recorded way back in 1992, so I doubt we’re ever going to get a full length recording - I guess we’ll just have to get over it.
It is woeful however that Audible/Penguin are not supplying the line numbers of the sections for those wanting to read along with the text - which is my preferred way of following challenging texts such as this. However I am writing the information I have from the original recording below together with the page numbers of the Penguin Fagles translation.
To add insult to injury, the chapters of the audiobook are completely unrelated to the chapters (books) of The Iliad, or indeed anything at all. But if you have the inclination you can mark the actual chapter sections using the clips and notes feature as you go along.
The sections have an interlinking narrative (read by Maria Tucci).

Book 1: Lines 1 to 735
Book 2: Lines 57 to 572 (pp.101-115)
Book 3: Lines 1 to 540 (pp.128-144)
Book 4: Lines 489 to 630 (pp.159-163)
Book 6: Lines 283 to 630 (pp.203-213)
Book 8: Lines 638 to 654 (pp. 249-250)
Book 9: Lines 1 to 869 (pp. 251-275)
Book 11: Lines 704 to 791 (pp.316-318) Lines 909 to 1015 (pp.322-324)
Book 14: Lines 187 to 421 (pp.374-381)
Book 16: Lines 1 to 1017 (pp. 412-441)
Book 18: Lines 1 to 717 (pp. 467-487)
Book 19: Lines 1 to 503 (pp. 488-502)
Book 20: Lines 554 to 569 (p.519)
Book 21: Lines 1 to 434 (pp. 520-532)
Book 22: Lines 1 to 606 (pp. 541-558)
Book 24: Lines 1 to 944 (pp. 588 - 614)

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Nicholas
  • 04-26-19

Extraordinary power

For me, the best translation by a long way, and here, read by Derek Jacobi, it is quite wonderful. Stirring, mysterious, even bewildering, but completely gripping.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-07-18

many many pages missing in audiobook

This reading misses large quantities of the Fagles Illiad translation - no introduction and many sections of the story were removed and summarised, which is a real shame because the story, translation and narration is excellent and if you actually got all of the book it would easily be 4 or 5 stars.

Extremely dissapointing.