Skip to main content
US Macmillan Tradebooks for Courses

The Iliad

Ralph Blakely

Forge Books

The Iliad Download image

ISBN10: 0765331683
ISBN13: 9780765331687


496 Pages



Request Desk Copy
Request Exam Copy


Sign up to receive information about new books, author events, and special offers.

Sign up now

The Iliad opens in the late stages of the Trojan War, and, with reflection on prior battles, follows through the sacking of Troy and the Greeks' bitter victory. Spanning the defeats, allegiances, victories, and vengeances of mortals and Gods alike, this epic poem of the ages still manages to be intensely relevant to modern readers. The major thematic thrusts (glory, honor, wrath, and fate) are both the stuff of legend and part of our ongoing experience.

Now, in an updated prose translation from the original Greek, Blakely focuses his Iliad on the gripping heroics of Achilles and Patroclus, recounting a relatable tale of angry young men striving for glory, trapped by fate into prescribed warrior roles.


Praise for The Iliad

"Blakely's translation is fluent and accurate. That it is in prose will no doubt offend purists, but it has an elegance and loftiness that proclaims something other than a prose document from a government agency or a contemporary novel. He has included the epithets and other mechanisms of oral poetry which in our time have become adornments, and they feel right. If I were a teacher, I would very much be inclined to use it as a text."—Charles Rowan Beye, distinguished professor of classics emeritus at the City University of New York

"Translators of Homer tend to be philologists or poets, but Blakely is unabashedly neither. Instead, this gentleman, a self-proclaimed amateur, [has] spent more hours with The Iliad for the love of it than most scholars of classics will in their lifetimes, and he [has] in the process developed a profound and deeply personal relationship with the poem . . . Now, with this translation, Blakely invites his readers to cultivate a like intimacy with the work, a relationship of profound rewared that will serve for years to come."—Keyne Cheshire, associate professor and chair of classics at Davidson College

Reviews from Goodreads


Read an Excerpt


Book 1

Sing, goddess, of the wrath of Achilles Peleusson, the ruinous wrath that brought immense pain to the Acheans and propelled many valiant souls of heroes down to Hades, and made them pickings for dogs and birds...

About the author

Ralph Blakely

RALPH BLAKELY is proficient in six languages (German, Spanish, French, Italian, Latin and Greek). He has been an organist-choirmaster and a private investor, and currently serves on the board of directors at the Carolina Art Association/Gibbes Museum of Art.

Ralph E. Blakely