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Seamus Heaney and the ClassicsBann Valley Muses$
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Stephen Harrison, Fiona Macintosh, and Helen Eastman

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198805656

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198805656.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 16 October 2019

Boustrophedon between Hellas and Home

Boustrophedon between Hellas and Home

Chapter:
(p.14) 2 Boustrophedon between Hellas and Home
Source:
Seamus Heaney and the Classics
Author(s):

Oliver Taplin

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198805656.003.0002

Seamus Heaney did not actually visit Greece until 1995, a trip ‘long promised, long deferred’, followed by a later visit to Delphi, which added a tribute to Zbigniew Herbert and two further ‘Sonnets from Hellas’ to the four set in the Peloponnese. These were all published in Electric Light in 2001, as was the superb poem ‘Out of the Bag’, which works in a ‘pilgrimage’ to Epidaurus. The aim of this short study will be to trace the topography of Heaney’s Hellas poems in order to bring out his vivid observation of locality and landscape. At the same time it will consider the associations that the Greek settings bring to his mind, especially those of other places: hyperborean Poland, Harvard, Lourdes, and, above all, the myth-haunted island at the far north-west of Europe.

Keywords:   Heaney, Greece, Sonnets from Hellas, Herbert, Epidaurus

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