Stephen Halliwell provides the first translation into English of On the Sublime in over fifty years. This volume contains a substantial introduction, which places the treatise in the wider context of Graeco-Roman culture.
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This is the first new edition in English for more than half a century of one of the most influential works in the entire history of aesthetics, the treatise On the Sublime, whose author is unknown but usually called Longinus. It was On the Sublime which was chiefly responsible, in the early modern period, for giving the vocabulary of 'sublimity' the important place which it has held ever since in critical discourse about literature, visual art, music, and the experience of
nature. This edition contains a substantial introduction to the contents of the work; a newly edited Greek text with facing English translation (designed to be both accurate and readable, and therefore of assistance to non-specialists); and a comprehensive commentary which deals with everything from details of language
to the work's overarching ideas and arguments. The book undertakes the fullest and most probing engagement with On the Sublime yet attempted in any language. It advances many new interpretations and seeks to make sense of the treatise both as a remarkable document in its own right and in relation to the traditions of ancient Greek and Roman literature, philosophy, and criticism. In addition to supplying all the needs of scholars and students directly concerned with Graeco-Roman
culture, the introduction and translation make the book also of value to the many other kinds of readers—philosophers of aesthetics, art-historians, literary critics, historians of ideas, and more besides—who are interested in the ancient origins as well as the modern development of concepts of the