Virgil, the greatest poet of Rome's golden age, was born in 70 B.C. in northern Italy. His Eclogues—satirical, passionate, nostalgic—are among the most influential poems of love and pastoral fancy ever written. David Ferry, whose versions of the Odes of Horace and Gilgamesh established him as a master translator, skillfully captures the playfulness and tones of Virgil's magical verse. The Eclogues of Virgil gave definitive form to the pastoral mode, and these magically beautiful poems, which were influential in so much subsequent literature, perhaps best exemplify what pastoral can do.
"Song replying to song replying to song," touchingly comic, poignantly sad, sublimely joyful, the various music that these shepherds make echoes in scenes of repose and harmony, and of hardship and trouble in work and love. A bilingual edition, The Eclogues of Virgil includes notes and an Introduction that describes the fundamental role of this book in the pastoral tradition.
"Direct, unmannered and fresh: a modern version of classical simplicity."—Merle Rubin, The Los Angeles Times
"Mr. Ferry is a gifted poet and much-admired translator . . . Those to whom the original is a sealed book will enjoy much of its charm through the medium of the author's accomplished translation, while those who, like Shakespeare, have 'small Latin' can experience the additional pleasure of savoring, with Mr. Ferry's help, the musical perfection of Virgil's lines."—Bernard Knox, The Washington Times
"Ferry has achieved a high degree of fidelity to what Virgil wrote . . . Simple, luminous clarity."—Richard Jenkyns, The New Republic
"As fresh-minted and sparkling as his deservedly praised Odes of Horace and his rendering of Gilgamesh . . . Ferry's translation wonderfully preserves the exquisite harmonies of the mode while giving it a vigorous edge of reality."—Robert Taylor, The Boston Globe