Since its emergence as an independent nation during the first decades οf the nineteenth century Greece has produced a succession οf poets οf whom any country would be proud. Their poetry has behind it the majestic and awe-inspiring worlds οf ancient Greece and Byzantium, as well as the centuries-old tradition οf folk-song and ballad; and each οf them has drawn upon this background in various ways. At the same time their imaginations have been enriched through contact with other European cultures. It is this fusion οf the local and the cosmopolitan that gives their poetry its unique quality, at once characteristically Greek and universal in its relevance.
Ιn this book, Philip Sherrard, a leading authority in the field οf modern Greek studies, examines the poetry οf five οf Greece's major poets: Solomos, Palamas, Cavafis, Sikelianos and Seferis. Working from the centre outwards, he explores the inner struggle that issues in the complex pattern οf the poetry, thus introducing the reader to the poet's imaginative world and giving him access to the experience οf life to which the poetry bears witness.