The bloody prequel: a triumphant new translation of the Iliad

There is an ancient comment (on the work of a grammarian with the terrific moniker Dionysius Thrax) that the performers of the Iliad and the Odyssey changed costume according to which poem they were reciting: a dark blue crown for the sea of the Odyssey, red for the blood of the Iliad. Emily Wilson, whose brisk and clear-eyed translation of the Odyssey became a bestseller, has now switched her sea-blue crown for her blood-red one. Even the covers of the two books – the Odyssey had a blue-dominated cover depicting the Minoan fresco of ‘Ladies in Blue’; the Iliad is red and gold, with an image of Thetis giving Achilles

The age-old story of strongmen

The only good news, after the massacres in Ukraine, is that so many ugly behemoth super-yachts have been seized and will not be polluting the seas this summer. There is no more horrible sight than an oligarch’s super-yacht on the horizon, and that is before it disgorges its passengers, which is a horror show in itself. Arab boats, with their hookers on board, are even worse. The other good news is that Elon Musk has become the largest shareholder in Twitter, and in a Trojan War replication has challenged Putin to a duel. Oh, what a wonderful world this would be if those who started wars would duke it out