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Starting from the authors' discovery that the Persian epic poem Vāmiq and ʿAdhrā by ʿUnṣurī (11th century AD) derives from the ancient Greek novel of Mētiokhos and Parthenopē, the book contains critical editions of the Greek and Persian fragments and testimonia, with English translation and comments. The exciting story of the modern recovery of the two texts is told, and the transformations of the productive theme of The ardent lover and the virgin are traced from Greek novel to Persian poem, and through later Persian and Turkish literature. Of particular importance is the authors' attempt to reconstruct the common plot and individual variations, adding a new work to the limited corpus of ancient novels and shedding new light on the genre of Persian epic poetry.
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Tomas Hägg, Fil.dr. (1971) in Greek language and literature, Uppsala University, is Professor of Classical Philology at the University of Bergen. His publications include Narrative Technique in Ancient Greek Romances, Photios als Vermittler antiker Literatur and The Novel in Antiquity.
Bo Utas, Fil.dr. (1973) in Iranian languages, Uppsala University, . He has published on a wide array of subjects within Iranian linguistics, literature and religion including Arabic and Iranian elements in New Persian prosody, Arabic prosody and its applications in Muslim poetry, (Stockholm 1994) and The aesthetic use of New Persian (Edebiyāt, 1998).
This is an extremely important volume for those interested in the Greek romance, in Persian literature, and especially in the way elements of the Greek and Roman traditions came over into Eastern literatures.It also illustrates the enormous potential for new discoveries concerning Greek literature awaiting a fuller exploration of such eastern texts. I hope in the future we may be able to see many collaborations of this kindJean Alvares, Bulletin of the American Society of Papyrologists
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