An Ethiopian Romance

An Ethiopian Romance

Heliodorus of Emesa Moses Hadas / Dec 08, 2019

An Ethiopian Romance Upon a rock sat a maiden of such inexpressible beauty as to be supposed divine Her head inclined forward without moving for she was looking fixedly at a young man who lay at her feet The man was disf

  • Title: An Ethiopian Romance
  • Author: Heliodorus of Emesa Moses Hadas
  • ISBN: 9780812216721
  • Page: 146
  • Format: Paperback
  • Upon a rock sat a maiden of such inexpressible beauty as to be supposed divine Her head inclined forward without moving, for she was looking fixedly at a young man who lay at her feet The man was disfigured with wounds, but seemed to rouse himself a little as from a deep sleep, almost of death itself Pain had clenched his eyes, but the sight of the maiden drew th Upon a rock sat a maiden of such inexpressible beauty as to be supposed divine Her head inclined forward without moving, for she was looking fixedly at a young man who lay at her feet The man was disfigured with wounds, but seemed to rouse himself a little as from a deep sleep, almost of death itself Pain had clenched his eyes, but the sight of the maiden drew them toward her He collected his breath, heaved a deep sigh, and murmured faintly My sweet, said he, are you truly safe, or are you too a casualty of the war The Romance novel didn t begin with Kathleen Woodiwiss or even with the Bronte sisters By the time Heliodorus wrote his Aethiopica or Ethiopian Romance in the third century, the genre was already impressively developed Heliodorus launches his tale of love and the quirks of fate with a bizarre scene of blood, bodies, and booty on an Egyptian beach viewed through the eyes of a band of mystified pirates The central love struck characters are Charicles, the beautiful daughter of the Ethiopian queen, and Theagenes, a Thessalian aristocrat The story unfolds with all the twists and devices any writer would employ today, with the added attractions of dreams, oracles, and exotic locales in the ancient Mediterranean and Africa.Hadas s was the first modern English language translation of this story, which was first translated into English in 1587 and was a favorite among the Elizabethans His version of this earliest extant Greek novel remains accessible and appealing back cover.The novel is thought to have originally been written in the 2nd or 3rd century A.D Nothing is known about the author, Heliodorus.

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    About "Heliodorus of Emesa Moses Hadas"

      • Heliodorus of Emesa Moses Hadas

        Heliodorus of Emesa, from Emesa, Syria, was a Greek writer generally dated to the third century AD who is known for the ancient Greek novel or romance called the Aethiopica the Ethiopian Story or sometimes Theagenes and Chariclea.According to his own statement, his father s name was Theodosius and he belonged to a family of priests of the sun Socrates us 5th century AD identifies the author of Aethiopica with a certain Heliodorus, bishop of Trikka Nicephorus Callistus 14th century relates that the work was written in the early years of this bishop before he became a Christian and that, when forced either to disown it or resign his bishopric, he preferred resignation Most scholars reject this identification.


    1. 998. Aithiopika = Aethiopica = Aethiopica, HeliodorusThe Romance novel didn't begin with Kathleen Woodiwiss or even with the Bronte sisters. By the time Heliodorus wrote his "Aethiopica"--or "Ethiopian Romance"--in the third century.Heliodorus of Emesa was a Greek writer for whom two ranges of dates are suggested, either about the 250s AD or in the aftermath of Julian's rule, that is shortly after 363. Born: Homs, Syriaتاریخ نخستین خوانش: بیست و ششم ماه ژانویه س [...]

    2. How old is the novel? Can you identify the first novel? I've heard lots of people say Don Quixote is the first. It was written in the early seventeenth century. The most commonly cited first novel is The Tale of Genji, dated to the late tenth, early eleventh century. If you google the words "oldest novel", Genji is the top result.I don't understand how this and other ancient Greek novels were overlooked, though. Heliodorus's work, alternatively known as Aithiopika, An Ethiopian Story, etc. is a [...]

    3. Just another dusty, dry classic featuring the following:• Pirates;• Secret bandit lairs;• Mistaken identities;• Semi-mythical African kingdoms;• Prophecies; and• Human sacrifice.The Aethiopica is one of five complete novels to survive from Greek antiquity. Written around the third century AD, it was probably composed a bit later than the other works in its group. Along with a couple of Roman novels and some other Greek prose works that are novel-esque, these texts make up a fascinati [...]

    4. Heliodorus's Ethiopian Story was engaging, complex, and inventive. It was also a kind of mixed bag for me. At times it is clear that this is a sort of proto-soap opera, and sometimes I felt I'd had just about enough of Theagenes and Chariclea repeatedly proving, in more and more extreme ways, how desperately they loved one another and how utterly committed they were to preserving their chastity. And all the jeopardy, and jeopardy averted, only to arrive at even greater jeopardy. But then, for th [...]

    5. Απάτη! Το τομάκι περιέχει μόνο το ένα τρίτο της ιστορίας, η οποία ειρήσθω εν παρόδω, και τι δεν έχει: ληστές, ιερείς, Αιγύπτιους, προφήτες, σπηλιές, λάφυρα, καράβια, κόλπα, αφηγήσεις, επιχειρηματολογία πάνω στο γιατί ο Όμηρος είναι Αιγύπτιος (!) κι άλλα πολλά. Απορώ τι άλλο θα δι [...]

    6. Aethiopica is an early Greek Romance. It tells the tale of two lovers: Chariclea, daughter of Ethiopian Royalty and Theagenes. The plot begins at what seems to be halfway through the progression of events, and much of the story is told as tales by other characters (stories within the stories). The poor lovers always seem to fall from one misfortune into the next and of course all is resolved at the very last minute. It’s very dramatic, fast-paced, and surprisingly easy to read for such an old [...]

    7. First I have to say, if you’re going to read this book (on the 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die list) I recommend finding a modern translation. The edition that I had was a print-on-demand reprint of an out-of-copyright translation that prided itself on being based on something from the 17th century, and it was not an easy read. The story itself is a lively if confusing tale of the stunningly beautiful and perfectly chaste heroine Chariclea and the love of her life Theagenes. Chariclea [...]

    8. Fascinating that this is a story over 1500 years old, and a chance to read about characters and civilisations that are so distant. However Ethiopian story is one of those tales where the two characters are subjected to a series of trials and tribulations. They are tested and seem to go from one difficult situation to another.Chariclea's life seems particularly complicated, did find it fun to see how the author was going to solve each problem. The book ends quickly and I did find it a bit to easi [...]

    9. Rounding up a bit because of the age of this book. I mean, this is one of the first novels and it tells an enjoyable tale, though a bit rambling and losing focus at times.The story is of a beautiful woman trying to get home with her beloved and the trials they encounter en route. At times, it was surprising how modern and familiar the tropes were, and it was fun to see now-common sights (like certain animals) described from an ancient point of view. It was also very interesting to read about how [...]

    10. Read this for the 1001 book list. It wasGreek. And old. And wow were the ancient Greeks arrogant.The beginning of this book is actually really good. It starts with two young people who have apparently just survived a slaughter being captured bypirates. Really. Swamp pirates. This was apparently a thing back then. Except the pirate leader is really Egyptian high priest. Yes, really. You eventually hear is story and the story of pretty much every main side character in the course of trying to get [...]

    11. Well, I can now say that I have read one of the world's most ancient novels and it was a real trip. It was exhausting in fact. This is a romance novel on steroids, there is a little bit of everything in here and it did offer an interesting insight into ancient culture. I learned a lot but I don't think I would ever want to read another ancient Greek romance novel. This poor couple has been through so much that I am not sure that they have any life left to enjoy together but I am glad that they a [...]

    12. Firstly, it must be pointed out that I didn't actually read this version of the book, but rather one that I found online with updated translations (elfinspell/Heliodorus). The enjoyability of reading any book from such an ancient period (c1700 years ago), is directly dependent on the quality of the translation and it's spelling, so make sure you start with something readable before engaging in such a lengthy book. The story started out nicely and was fairly easy to follow until the protagonists [...]

    13. Heliodorus seems to have been aware that his novel could become just an extended sequence of somewhat unlikely adventures, so mixes things up with an in medias res opening, with suspense and clues as to our heroes' identities, but in the end it does remain a bit a of a string of stories and the two heroes just need to find a quiet place and have a quick bonk rather than wittering on about virginity (this is not merely projecting modern thoughts backwards, even the other ancients in the story bec [...]

    14. 4 down, 997 to go. This was not a very satisfactory experience at all, and as as a matter of fact, gets a full star only because if I leave the star off, one might think I forgot to apply a rating. I had no idea what was happening at any point, save for a few paragraphs that may have been coherent. The book went back and forth in time, without advising the reader exactly when this was happening. I was so lost and confused that I checked reviews to figure out what was generally happening at certa [...]

    15. Why I started this book: I'm trying to work through some of the unread books that inhabit my bookshelf. I think this was one of the books bought for a college class where the professor ran out of time and we never read it.Why I'm giving up on this book: Life is too short to read something I don't enjoy. The book isn't terrible, and I suppose it is interesting in terms of what a novel written in the 3rd century is like, but it's not my type of book. It reminds me of Candide but without the satire [...]

    16. Probably not to everyone's taste, this was a bit of a challenge for me, chosen from the pre-1700 section of the 1001 Books list. Originally written around the 3rd century, my copy was a revised edition of a 1587 translation. It tells of the romance between Chariclea and Theagenes, she the daughter of Ethiopian royalty banished at birth, and he her faithful champion, and details their journey to return to her family. Along the way they are involved in battles and wars, abducted into slavery, tort [...]

    17. La primera parte me gustó muchísimo más que la segunda: los flashbacks me parecieron maravillosos. La segunda parte, por otra parte, me pareció pesada por todos los enredos y desgracias que había.Algo que me gustó bastante fue la cantidad de personajes, situaciones y ex cursus que introdujo el autor, aunque eso contribuyó a que a la pareja protagonista tuviera una profundidad menor que otras (Dafnis y Cloe o Quéreas y Calírroe, por ejemplo).También, me parece que ésta es la novela gri [...]

    18. This a second book in a row that I read from that era, and I must confess did they like to make diversions and changes of fate. Again a story of a beautiful maiden, who men can`t help but fall in love with (thou in this book a little less than in the last) and an equally beautiful man, who have found each other but cannot jet be together because faith buts different obstacles on their path. However I quite enjoyed this book, as the fair maiden was not only beautiful but also clever and did not j [...]

    19. Transl. Moses Hadas. Really funny 3rd century CE novel with excesses of trickery, pirates, looting, faithfulness, adventure, and fighting, and, of course, a happy ending. A princess born white to the black Ethiopian queen, Chariclea was secretly sent away at birth to avoid disgracing her mother. This story details the travails and adventures she encounters with her Greek love Theagenes as she journies and reclaims her birthright with the help of various people along the way. So much fun.

    20. Great opening -- bandits stumble upon a slaughtered army on the beach, along with the remains of a banquet and heaps of treasure. From there, a bit rambly and convoluted, as though H felt the need to cram in every available plot device (romance, war, mistaken identity, stories-within-stories-within stories). Worth hanging in there for the moment when the terrifying appearance of a giraffe causes pandemonium in the Ethiop court.

    21. Greek romances are about pirates. At least, that is what the two I read have been about. And about the hero and heroine being incredibly beautiful yet constantly put in chains or into slavery. Seems like that would spoil a girl's looks. But she always comes up fresh as a daisy and in the end she becomes a princess and marries her prince to live happily ever after. But really, these aren't awful. Would make a good B-movie.

    22. Chariclea is an Ethiopian princess whose mother left her to the elements just after her birth. She was adopted by a priest, served in Aphrodite's temple and eventually fell in love with Theagenes. This is the story of their exploits and their trials.This was one of the books on the 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die list. I'd never read it before and quite enjoyed the complex story line.

    23. This was a surprisingly quick and easy read for something that was written so long ago.Plot devices abound - pirates, kidnapping, mistaken identities, stories within stories within stories, love, lust, obsession you get the idea. It all ends with Ethiopians setting aside human sacrifice in the interest of love and fidelity.

    24. I only read this to cross off the "1001 Books " list, but was singularly unimpressed. I thought the whole writing style was totally basic and unengaging. One of the many books on the list where I was at a loss as to why it had made it to the list. This just drivelled on and on and on! Hey - at least I can cross it off the list!

    25. Romance, adventurepirates! What is considered to be the first popular novel (written by Heliodorus - a phoenician? in the 3rd century AD) hasl.Definitely a pot boiler. I particularly enjoyed the scenes where the author was poking fun at Herodotus's narrative style.

    26. What I found amazing about this novel was how much it was like a modern novel considering it was written in the 3rd century. Like it actually had a plot and there was actually a story goal, but different things kept getting in the way of the goal.

    27. I liked that this ancient tale was full of adventures, danger, pirates, robbers and royalties. What I didn't like so much was that there was too much crying and despair. The main characters cried in every single chapter, which I think was a bit too much.

    28. A Romance a bit like a Shakespearean romance, Pericles, or Sydney's Arcadia perhaps. Mine says on the back: "As day breaks over the Nile Delta, a gang of Egyptian bandits discover an empty ship and a mass of newly slain corpses." Which is why I bought it.

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