Sweeney Astray

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ISBN 9780571210091 Format Paperback
9780571210091
Paperback
Published 06/08/2001 Length 96 pages
96

About Book

Sweeney Astray is Seamus Heaney's version of the medieval Irish work Buile Suibhne - the first complete translation since 1913. Its hero, Mad Sweeney, undergoes a series of purgatorial adventures after he is cursed by a saint and turned into a bird at the Battle of Moira. The poetry spoken by the mad king, exiled to the trees and the slopes, is among the richest and most immediately appealing in the whole canon of Gaelic literature.

Sweeney Astray not only restores to us a work of historical and literary importance but offers the genius of one of our greatest living poets to reinforce its claims on the reader of contemporary literature.

Sweeney Astray is Seamus Heaney's version of the medieval Irish work Buile Suibhne - the first complete translation since 1913. Its hero, Mad Sweeney, undergoes a series of purgatorial adventures after he is cursed by a saint and turned into a bird at the Battle of Moira. The poetry spoken by the mad king, exiled to the trees and the slopes, is among the richest and most immediately appealing in the whole canon of Gaelic literature.Sweeney Astray not only restores to us a work of historical and literary importance but offers the genius of one of our greatest living poets to reinforce its claims on the reader of contemporary literature.
  • About Seamus Heaney

    Seamus Heaney was born in County Derry in Northern Ireland. Death of a Naturalist, his first collection of poems, appeared in 1966, and was followed by poetry, criticism and translations which established him as the leading poet of his generation. In 1995 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, and twice won the Whitbread Book of the Year, for The Spirit Level (1996) and Beowulf (1999). Stepping Stones, a book of interviews conducted by Dennis O'Driscoll, appeared in 2008; Human Chain, his last volume of poems, was awarded the 2010 Forward Prize for Best Collection. He died in 2013. His translation of Virgil's Aeneid Book VI was published posthumously in 2016 to critical acclaim.

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