The Kalevala provides a compelling insight into the myths and folklore of Finland. Compiled by Elias Lönnrot in the 19th century, this impressive volume follows a tradition of oral storytelling that goes back some 2000 years, and it is often compared to such epic poems as Homer's Odyssey. However, The Kalevala has little in common with the culture of its Nordic neighbors: It is primarily poetic, it is mythical rather than historic, and its heroes solve their problems with magic more often than violence.
This version uses the acclaimed translation by Keith Bosley, who is one of the acknowledged experts on The Kalevala. Highly popular and accessible, his is widely regarded to be the authoritative text.
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Like an ancient storyteller
Charming and engaging.
That it sounded like a storyteller of the original tales might have, had they been in English--declaimed and metrical but well paced. He conveyed what must have been the real meaning of the words--which as the translator from the Finnish, he knew.
No, the original was assembled from different, though related tales by a 19th-century collector.
Where other translated folk tales seem flat, this was lively, without the sense that anything had been added to make it so.
This was Meant to be Read Aloud