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by Percy Bysshe Shelley

ePub Prometheus Unbound download
Percy Bysshe Shelley
Kessinger Publishing, LLC (May 23, 2010)
History & Criticism
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Prometheus Unbound is a four-act lyrical drama by Percy Bysshe Shelley, first published in 1820.

Prometheus Unbound is a four-act lyrical drama by Percy Bysshe Shelley, first published in 1820. It is concerned with the torments of the Greek mythological figure Prometheus, who defies the gods and gives fire to humanity, for which he is subjected to eternal punishment and suffering at the hands of Zeus. It is inspired by the classical Prometheia, a trilogy of plays attributed to Aeschylus

Prometheus Unbound book.

Prometheus Unbound book.

Whilst Prometheus Unbound is a four act lyric play it was not written to be performed as a play but staged within the imagination of the reader. It is a reply to Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound which has the hero stealing fire from the gods to give to mortals. Many think this work is Shelley's masterpiece as it represents a culmination of the poet's political thought and displays his considerable gift of lyrical expression

Prometheus Unbound by Percy Bysshe Shelley is a lyrical drama told in four acts. In the first act, Prometheus, the Titan, is bound to a rock.

Prometheus Unbound by Percy Bysshe Shelley is a lyrical drama told in four acts. When morning dawns, Prometheus cries out against the Monarch of Gods and Daemons, who is Jupiter (Zeus in the Greek pantheon). The Demogorgon appears and speaks at the end of Prometheus Unbound, to laud Prometheus’s victory. Prometheus Unbound (1820) deals with the aftermath of Prometheus stealing fire from the gods and giving it to humans. Shelley was inspired to write Prometheus Unbound by the classical trilogy of plays known as Prometheia, written by Aeschylus during the height of Ancient Greek power.

His major works include the long visionary poems 'Prometheus Unbound' and 'Adonais', an elegy on the death of John Keats. His shorter, classic verses include 'To a Skylark', 'Mont Blanc' and 'Ode to the West Wind'.

Writing but one fine, enduring poem is a remarkable achievement. Writing a book of great poems is an even rarer triumph. Yet in 1820, British Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley (born August 4, 1792 – died July 8, 1822) published just such a book: Prometheus Unbound, with Other Poems, a collection of 10 poems of varying length and form, which ought to be ranked among the best ever made by an English poet. These 10 poems are arguably Shelley’s finest. Shelley was 28 years old and at the height of his poetic powers

Prometheus is discovered bound to the Precipice. Panthea and Ione are seated at his feet. The life and works of Percy Bysshe Shelley exemplify English Romanticism in both its extremes of joyous ecstasy and brooding despair.

Prometheus is discovered bound to the Precipice.

Percy Bysshe Shelley. Prometheus Unbound Hyperion books. Percy Bysshe Shelley. Не удалось найти ни одного отзыва. Collins' Clear Type Press, 1892.

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This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.
  • Percy Bysshe Shelley died less than a month before his 30th birthday, by drowning, when his small boat sank in a storm off the coast of Italy. The year was 1822. He was one of the most influential poets of the Romantic Movement. Having poked around a few ruins in the Middle East, his poem, “Ozymandias,” with its classic line, “Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!... the lone and level sands stretch far away” frequently came to mind. But this is the first work of his that I have read, selected after recently finishing Aeschylus’s Prometheus Bound (Dover Thrift Editions). Aeschylus also wrote a “Prometheus Unbound” as part of his trilogy, but no copy of it has survived. Thus, in a way, it seemed that Shelley completed his own version of this classic tale of the god who stole fire and gave it to man, some millennium and a half after Aeschylus’s first version.

    The play is in four parts. The first two mainly concern the laments of the still bound Prometheus, in good company with a chorus, and assorted character foils. Then Hercules comes to the rescue, and releases him. O Joy. In fact quite a bit of it. There are a lot of “dew-soaked morns” thereafter. Literally. Consider: “…and the dew-mingled rain, Of the calm moonbeams, a soft influence mind, Shall clothe the forest and the fields, ay, even The crag-built deserts of the barren deep, with ever-living leaves, and fruits and flowers.” Well, I’m all for making the desert bloom… in fact, I spent a quarter century watching one’s transformation… and it was not accomplished through mere exhortation. I also like the dew, and have been moved to awe by the moon. But Shelley seemed to overdo it a bit, so I decided to unleash the power of my Kindle, and I found that he used the words “dew” and “moon” each, 23 times.

    Certainly Shelley expressed equalitarian sentiments that I can wholeheartedly subscribe to: “And behold, thrones were kingless, and men walked, One with the other even as spirits do, None fawned, none trampled; hate, disdain or fear, Self-love or self-contempt, on human brows, No more inscribed, as o’er the gates of hell, ‘All hope abandon, ye who enter here.’ None frowned, none trembled, none with eager fear.” And later: “The loathsome mask has fallen, the man remains, Sceptreless, free, uncircumscribed, but man equal, unclassed, tribeless and nationless, exempt from awe, worship, degree, the king over himself; just, gentle, wise…” And ending his work on the ultimate of up-notes: “This, like thy glory, Titan, is to be Good, great and joyous, beautiful and free; This is alone Life, Joy, Empire, and Victory.”

    What to make of all this, since I have not been feeling very victorious lately, and the equalitarian sentiments are being demolished in a world of extreme (and growing!) income inequality? Should it be labelled “escapist literature”? In reading about Shelley at Wikipedia, I was impressed how influential this early 19th Century Romantic was, a Romantic who never made it to 30. The list is long: Gandhi, Tolstoy, Marx, Thoreau, Oscar Wilde, Bertrand Russell, Isadora Duncan. This work is widely considered to be his “masterpiece,” yet no one seems to read it, since there are only three reviews posted at Amazon in the USA and none in the UK. Another telltale sign from Kindle: there were NO passages underlined by others, a first in my reading experience of Kindle books.

    I found the 23 “dews” heavy going, as they seemed to turn into treacle. Sure, I take solace in the natural world, the more so as I age. Now that I am decades beyond that demarcation that Shelley never reached, I wonder if it is not time to invert one of those imperative slogans of my youth: “Don’t trust anyone over 30!” Perhaps now it should be that one cannot trust anyone under 30 to understand life, an understanding that is often improved with some creaky bones. In terms of reading pleasure and takeaways, I’d give this work 3-stars, but I’ll admit being intimidated by that long-list, and the very spectrum of his admirers, thus, 4-stars, since maybe I missed something, even a lot.

  • Beautifully written! Inspiring story of Justice, Love, and Truth establishing the rightful heir the Glory and Honor he deserves.

  • It should be noted that contrary to what the reviewer "A Customer" says below, this $3.99 Kindle edition includes neither the introduction by Percy nor the afterword by Mary.

  • This book is totally awesome. It's best to read it out loud. I never knew this other side of Percy B. Shelly.

    Both Percy and his dear wife, Mary, were great fans of what Benjamin Franklin was doing at the time, and taken by Franklin's miraculous discovery of...electricity! This was in the days of the great American Statesmen...Franklin was seen then as very cool and his discovery shook the world. Suddenly, this fire from the heavens could be contained in glass jars...

    His dear wife, Mary Shelly, started her own book, "Frankenstein," when Percy was halfway into the writing of Prometheus Unbound. This historical event gives much to wonder about as you read. It has nothing to do with the Aeschylus, "Prometheus Bound"--you can skip the Aeschylus and go straight to the Shelly. (And I think...Shelly himself said it had nothing to do with the Greek play, "Prometheus Bound") Either way, you can speed to the Shelly.

    This book was suggested by a highly refined gentleman in L.A., Roger Weir, the developer of the LEARNING CIVILIZATION. Weir shared the some of the history of the book that I'm including here, as it added to my enjoyment of the book. Weir suggests Prometheus Unbound to be read along with Fredrick Schiller's "On the Aesthetic Education of Man," as a pair, a complement of two books. As you read, and approach the last part the book, suddenly you connect with the feeling of Schiller's poetry at the end of the Ninth Symphony (the chorous) and you are transported beyond the canopy of the stars...!

    "Prometheus Unbound" is one of the finest books in the English Language. It's actually a play, and as readable as Shakespeare, and at an even higher level of refinement and vibration. It's like sitting alone with a spiritual master and listening, listening. Then... BEING... into the unknown unbound...

    It might be useful to recall the myth of Prometheus before this superlative reading adventure:

    Prometheus was one of the Titans and helped the god Jupiter(Zeus) take over the Heavens to be number-one-God. After this, Prometheus took pity on mankind and stole fire to give to man. Now, Jupiter (Zeus) could not have such a creative thinker roaming heaven and earth and doing favors for men and women. And so Prometheus was chained to a rock in the frozen wastes of what we now call, Sibera. Each day his guts and innards would be plucked out by ravenous birds, and each night his guts and innards would heal and mend--only to be torn out the next day, and the next, to eternity.

    Just as the mythological Prometheus liberated man with stealing fire from the Gods--an act for which he is punished by Jupiter (Zeus)...ya know....don't let any man be at the level of Heaven, only below it...don't let any man discover the divine fire within...this book liberates.

    (I do "therapy" with people in the ocean-CraniOcean-and work with dolphins --and this book is along a session flow in the ocean. A perfect compliment for meeting the ocean...without and within...for meeting the organic oceanic spiraling waves in love and with freedom.)

    After this book, I saw the very first (and best) original "Frankenstein" black and white movie--made in 1931, directed by the great James Whale--and I really got it for the first time...I began to see the Frankenstein image interpenetrating corporate-run-culture, especially in foods at any grocery store in the United States, frozen coagulates of hot dogs, old meat balls, genetic altered fruits...

    Percy and Mary were also a pair--the divine united. Percy the blade, Mary the chalice. Their bonding one of the love stories of English poetry.

    Awesome read! So grateful it was pointed out to me, and that sat to read it aloud. It took a few hours over two late afternoons. One of the required reads of Western Civilization, especially now!

    Thank you for letting these inspirations rest here with your own.

  • This is a nice edition of Shelley's classic play. Includes both Shelley's own foreward to the play and Mary Shelley's afterward. Recommended.