Book Club | July 2020: Quintus Smyrnaeus Fall of Troy 5–9

wordcloud Ajax and Odysseus

So when all other contests [aethloi] had an end, the goddess Thetis laid down in the midst great-hearted Achilles’ arms immortally wrought; and all around flashed out the cunning work with which mighty Hephaistos overchased the shield fashioned for the the dauntless-spirited descendant of Aiakos. ….. Then among the Argives Thetis dark-veiled in her deep sorrow for Achilles spoke these words [mūthos]: “Now all the contest [agōn] prizes [aethla] have been won [= brought to telos] which I set forth in sorrow [akhos] for my child. Now let that best [aristos] of the Achaeans come who rescued [sozein] from the foe my dead: to him these glorious and immortal arms I give which even the blessed [makar] immortals delighted to see.”

This month we continue our “long summer read” of The Fall of Troy, or Posthomerica, by Quintus Smyrnaeus.

For July, we will read Books 5–9, which feature the contest for the arms of Achilles, Eurypylos the son of Telephos, Neoptolemos, and the death of Eurypylos.

As always, you can read any translation you like. Free online:
Translation by Arthur S. Way is available at
or (downloadable parallel text) Translation by Arthur S. Way at

Available to ‘borrow’ at (registration required):
Translation by Frederick M. Combellack

The Greek text is available online at Perseus

Discussion will start and continue in the forum, and we will meet via Zoom on Tuesday, July 28, at 11 a.m. EDT.

Happy readings!