Catullus' Bedspread: The Life of Rome's Most Erotic Poet

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9780007554331: Catullus' Bedspread: The Life of Rome's Most Erotic Poet

Daisy Dunn's immediate narrative rediscovers the life and poetry of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome's first `modern' poet, a dandy who fell in love with another man's wife and made it known to the world through his timeless verse.Famed for his lyrical, subversive voice, Catullus was Rome's first and foremost poet. Amid the death of the Roman Republic, his life, as told through his poetry, was beset with love, loss, political conflict and above all, a desire for escape.Catullus' Bedspread follows the young poet's journey from his native Verona to Rome, filled with all the indulgences and sexual, social mores of the time, and then his lasting affair with the married Clodia, whom he would immortalise in his poetry. While Catullus and Clodia made love in the shadows, the whole of Italy was quaking as Caesar, Pompey and Crassus forged a doomed allegiance. When the older Clodia in turn betrayed Catullus for another man, the result was his greatest work, Poem 64: the wonderful, mythical tale of a sorrowful marriage and a lover's desertion, told through a picture on a bedspread. For a year Catullus turned his back on Rome, Italy and love. In his journey of escapism he encountered new geography, new cultures and at last an understanding that there was no escape, that yearning for the past, recent or ancient, is futile. Following a brush with the might of Caesar, and a cunning evasion, Catullus died, at the age of just thirty.Drawing on his peerless poetry and turbulent circumstances, Daisy Dunn's immediate narrative rediscovers Catullus the man, Rome's most `modern' poet - oscillating between the glorious past and the vivid, sensual present.

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About the Author:

Daisy Dunn was born in London in 1987 and read Classics at the University of Oxford, before winning a scholarship to the Courtauld and completing a doctorate in Classics and History of Art at University College London. She writes and reviews for many publications, including The Daily Telegraph, Evening Standard, and Standpoint, and is editor of Argo, a Greek culture magazine. She was longlisted for the 2015 Notting Hill Editions Essay Prize. `Catullus' Bedspread' and an accompanying volume of the poems in translation are Daisy's first books.

Review:

`An amazing mixture of pacey biography and first rate literary analysis. Rome's most famous bad boy poet comes alive as never before. Stunning' Boris Johnson`A haunting reminder of how little humanity has changed over two thousand years and a moving introduction to the greatest love poet of all time' Robert Harris`Dunn's beautifully written biography is a superb portrait of this most human of poets who leaps to life, hating and loving as ferociously as ever, before our 21st-century eyes' Sunday Times`Dunn does a brilliant job of recreating Rome in the first century BC ... This is a triumph of modern classical scholarship made accessible through lucid writing' Independent`Lyrical, playful and startlingly original ... Breathes extraordinary new life into the classical world. An unforgettable journey into the high art and low life of ancient Rome' Dan Jones'Imaginative and learned, Dunn has written the perfect introduction to Catullus and his world' Tom Holland`Dunn's brilliant new biography of the Roman master will shine beams of light on his darkly passionate poetry' Professor Paul Cartledge`A lively, finely crafted biography. Weaving well-researched social history with a compelling account of political machinations in the Rome, the picture here is not just of a libertine prone to writing of his obscene desires, but a soulful man at the heart of a remarkable age' Observer`Dunn is an appreciative and observant guide ... [her] prose is Catullan in its versatility: she can be deliciously coarse and ... lyrical. She marshals the poems into a life story ... Like a good music album ... An imaginative, enriching and quick-witted book reminds us that Catullus is a poet for all time' Standpoint`Imaginatively revive[s] this most accessible of Roman poets' Financial Times`Enjoyable and diligently researched ... Dunn is as a sure-footed and elegant literary critic ... `Catullus' Bedspread' is richly woven, and Dunn's deep passion for her subject is patent' Spectator

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Daisy Dunn
Published by HARPER COLLINS (2016)
ISBN 10: 0007554338 ISBN 13: 9780007554331
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Book Description HARPER COLLINS, 2016. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Daisy Dunn's immediate narrative rediscovers the life and poetry of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome¿s first ¿modern¿ poet, a dandy who fell in love with another man's wife and made it known to the world through his timeless verse. Famed for his lyrical, subversive voice, Catullus was Rome's first and foremost poet. Amid the death of the Roman Republic, his life, as told through his poetry, was beset with love, loss, political conflict and above all, a desire for escape. Catullus¿ Bedspread follows the young poet¿s journey from his native Verona to Rome, filled with all the indulgences and sexual, social mores of the time, and then his lasting affair with the married Clodia, whom he would immortalise in his poetry. While Catullus and Clodia made love in the shadows, the whole of Italy was quaking as Caesar, Pompey and Crassus forged a doomed allegiance. When the older Clodia in turn betrayed Catullus for another man, the result was his greatest work, Poem 64: the wonderful, mythical tale of a sorrowful marriage and a lover¿s desertion, told through a picture on a bedspread. For a year Catullus turned his back on Rome, Italy and love. In his journey of escapism he encountered new geography, new cultures and at last an understanding that there was no escape, that yearning for the past, recent or ancient, is futile. Following a brush with the might of Caesar, and a cunning evasion, Catullus died, at the age of just thirty. Drawing on his peerless poetry and turbulent circumstances, Daisy Dunn¿s immediate narrative rediscovers Catullus the man, Rome¿s most ¿modern¿ poet ¿ oscillating between the glorious past and the vivid, sensual present. Bookseller Inventory # 000342

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Book Description 2016. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Hardcover. A biography of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome's first great poet, a dandy who fell in love with another man's wife and made it known to the world through his verse. .Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 320 pages. 0.490. Bookseller Inventory # 9780007554331

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Daisy Dunn
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, 2016. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 1. A biography of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome's first great poet, a dandy who fell in love with another man's wife and made it known to the world through his verse.This superb book gives a rare portrait of life during one of the most critical moments in world history through the eyes of one of Rome's greatest writers. Living through the debauchery, decadence and spectacle of the crumbling Roman Republic, Catullus remains famous for the sharp, immediate poetry with which he skewered Rome's sparring titans ? Pompey, Crassus and his father's friend, Julius Caesar. But it was for his ****, scandalous but often tender love elegies that he became best known, inspired above all by his own lasting affair with a married woman whom he immortalised in his verse as ?Lesbia'. A monumental figure for poets from Ovid and Virgil onwards, his journey across youth and experience, from Verona to Rome, Bithynia to Lake Garda, is traced in Daisy Dunn's brilliant portrait of life during one of the most critical moments in world history. Hardback. Bookseller Inventory # MM-41036603

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Book Description 2016. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Hardcover. A biography of Gaius Valerius Catullus, Rome's first great poet, a dandy who fell in love with another man's wife and made it known to the world through his verse. .Shipping may be from our Sydney, NSW warehouse or from our UK or US warehouse, depending on stock availability. 320 pages. 0.490. Bookseller Inventory # 9780007554331

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Book Description William Collins. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0007554338 We guarantee all of our items - customer service and satisfaction are our top priorities. Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Bookseller Inventory # TM-0007554338

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