History is more or less bunk. It's tradition. We don't want tradition. We want to live in the present and the only history that is worth a tinker's dam is the history we made today. — Henry Ford

Homer and Virgil for Boys and Girls

Authors: Rev. Alfred J. Church
Publisher: Macmillan Company, New York
Dates: 1906–1908

Rev. Alfred J. Church was a prolific writer of classical history for young people, but he is most well known for his simplified Classics. Although most of his revised classics are directed toward young adults, he also wrote significantly abridged versions of the Aeneid, Iliad, and Odyssey for elementary age students. These versions are completely rewritten from the original, as they inevitably must be to make them accessible to younger children, but they benefit from the authors thorough learning of the subject, and are highly faithful to the originals. All three are action-packed and have no difficulty holding a reader's attention. The "Boys and Girls" Classics, was one of Church’s best selling, and most widely read series.

Iliad for Boys and Girls   by Alfred J. Church   63 credits
Vigorous retelling of Homer's Iliad, relating the incidents of the great siege of Troy, from the quarrel of the chiefs to the ransoming of Hector's body. This versions provides a more complicated retelling of Homer's famous than some other adaptations, but is still directed at intermediate students rather than young adults. Alfred Church was a British high school instructor whose career was dedicated to popularizing the classics for young people and this is one of his most well-known books.

Odyssey for Boys and Girls   by Alfred J. Church   62 credits
This lively version of Homer's Odyssey tells of the wanderings of Ulysses and his adventures with the giant Cyclops and the enchantress Circe as he makes his way home to his beloved Ithaca. There, after slaying the suitors who have been wooing his wife Penelope, he is reunited with his family after twenty long years. This version is especially appropriate for middle school students because it highlights many details that are usually omitted in children's version, and yet is still very accessible to younger teens.

Aeneid for Boys and Girls   by Alfred J. Church   59 credits
This story recounts the fascinating tale of Aeneas, the legendary ancestor of Romulus, who escaped from the burning city of Troy and wandered the Mediterranean for years before settling in Italy. His adventures once arriving in Latium are no less interesting since he must fight the jealous suitor Turnus for the hand of the princess Lavinia. Patterned after the Iliad and the Odyssey, the Aeneid was described in an epic poem by Virgil to glorify the imperial city of Rome.