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Daphnis and Chloe

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  3,048 ratings  ·  227 reviews
This edition of Daphnis and Chloe, the best known of the Greek romances, provides the first modern commentary in English on this intriguing work. This is the story of two young people growing up as goatherd and shepherdess, and their discovery of love, sex and their true selves.
Published June 5th 1992 by Iwanami (first published 150)
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Average rating 3.78  · 
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 ·  3,048 ratings  ·  227 reviews

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A shepherd and a shepherdess fall in love in those ancient days before this became a literary trope.

They are even more innocent than the sheep they herd and have no idea how to satisfy their feelings. They ask an old woman for help. She cackles and tells them that they have to sleep together. So the couple go back to the field, lie down together and fall asleep. They wake up and feel as unsatisfied as before.

Oh, and as so often in the literature of this period there are some pirates too.
May 27, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first classical novel, having only read plays/poems beforehand. Daphnis and Chloe has been cited by many booktubers (whose opinions on classical literature I trust) as a great place to start with literature from antiquity, and the premise of this book was too good to pass up.

Daphnis and Chloe is a very sweet tale of Daphnis (a 15-year-old goatherd) and Chloe (a 13-year-old shepherdess) who fall in love without understanding what 'Love' is. Through a series of bizarre and comedic mish
Sep 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aww 😊 such a lovely, romantic and erotic tale of young love and the trials and tribulations that it entails.
Pirates, masters ,Gods, nymphs, and Pan all have parts to play in this story of a goatherd who loves a shepherdess in times long ago.
My goodness they were forward thinking in there attitudes towards love and sex.
Definitely the oldest literature I've ever read (it's dated around the second century AD)
This was a great Sunday short story and I will read more about Greek mythology. ( I have
Jose Moa
Apr 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
The adolescent,real pure love,the discovery of sensuality,the birth of sexuality,the exploration of one another body,is one of the most beautiful and tender events in the life of a human being;yet no ever happens and if it do, mostly only one time, and by that is a intemporal subject of novels and poetry.

This pastoril bucolic novel ,written in Adrianos time,located in the Lesbos island ,near the turkish coast,tells all this with a lot of references to grek mithology and with happy end.

Is strikin
Sep 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was such a sweet and funny classic from Ancient Greece. Written in prose and exploring the problems of two lovers, who don't know how to make love. With help and hindrance from the Gods (of course), some neighbours, as well as the odd pirate adventure, things end happily ever after... ...more
Things like this make me lament the difference in curriculum between what I studied in school in the US and what my friend studied in Italy in Lecce. At least I'm aware that I missed out, and so I have to fill in the gaps! The way I do so is through this: the Penguin Classics list I found on Wikipedia (see below for the links)

And this is exactly one of the kinds of books that make me glad to have this list to refer to when I choose the next book to read--especially since most of them are free an
Read all my reviews on

I don't think pastoral romance is something for me. I found this one from the ancient Greek author Longus, overly long and without substance of any kind.

A boy and a girl, both foundlings, are raised by poor shepherds/goatherds and while there is pirates and other kind of problems, they only have eyes for each other and are painfully slow acting on it. All the while they seem naive to a fault.

Not for me.

~Little Black Classics #115~
Apr 23, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was super spring-appropriate. I loved how reading the story felt like it was being read to me. It made me laugh and I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of nature and herding goats and sheep. I really appreciated how gentle and lighthearted the story was. The last 20 pages or so were a bit of a drag to me, but I am happy I finally got to this ancient classic. If you’re in the mood for something springy, I would definitely pick it up.
Czarny Pies
Jun 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of European culture.
Shelves: greek-and-roman
Daphnis and Chloé is one of the fundamental works of European civilization that has inspired scores of painters, sculptors, poets, choreographers and composers. Five pages in, I realized it was also the model used by Honoré d'Urfé and Jacques-Henri Bernardin de Saint-Pierre.

All in all Daphnis and Chloé was well worth the two hours that it took to read on my dock at the cottage. I would give it one more star if I could see in any way its relevance to the twenty-first century.

Lee Razer
Recommended if the sentence, "I swear by the goats," said not an iota ironically, appeals to you. ...more
Katherine Hislop
Like a fairytale minus the fun stuff.
Apr 12, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
What a sweet little love story
Barnaby Thieme
Aug 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: greece, literature
One of the great ironies of world literature is that the sole extant novel by the Greek author Longus is actually quite short.

Okay, now that I've gotten that out of my system ....

"Daphnis and Chloe" is one of the quintessential works of the Hellenistic period, and it's tempting to conclude with the classicists of the 19th century, reading this trifle, that Hellenism was a period of decadence in Greek culture. We've come a long way from Aeschylus and Homer, to this artful pastoral diversion writ
This could do with a more vigorous translation, it's so matter of fact. It seems that during the translation a little depth to the story was lost and every now and then there is the odd moment that shines through.

The hunt is on for a better translation.
Richard Seltzer
Apr 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Delightful story of young, innocent love., written in the second century AD. I was reading it for the second time.
John Pistelli
Aug 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ancient, fiction
This early pastoral romance (dating from the second or third century A.D.) is both entertaining in itself and a good corrective to the received wisdom that the novel is a quintessential invention of Cervantes or capitalism or Protestantism or the eighteenth century. Though brief and beholden to the boys-meets/loses/gets-girl conventions of the Hellenistic romance, Daphnis and Chloe is recognizable as a novel: its protagonists learn and grow, deepening their sense of their world and how its const ...more
John Mccullough
Some time in the 2nd century AD/CE a Greek named Longus claims to have visited the island of Lesbos and there found a mural which told a story of a young couple, a goatherd named Daphnis and a shepherd named Chloe. Both were orphans, foundlings in rural Lesbos, suckled by a goat and a sheep, respectively, and adopted by neighboring farm families who took pity on them.

Daphnis grew to be an expert goatherd and beautiful boy. Chloe grew to be an expert shepherd and beautiful girl. By the time Daphn
The original pastoral romance. “And they called it puppy love...”
Callum McLaughlin
Picking up something that was written in the 2nd century is always going to bring with it some worries that it will be far too archaic to possibly understand or enjoy now. Credit therefore has to go to the translation (done, in this edition, by Phiroze Vasunia) for making this so utterly readable, even by modern standards. There wasn't a single point I felt the language or tone were outdated, confusing or dense, and the story itself was fun and charming, as we follow two young people who must go ...more
Sep 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: translated-work
Quality Rating: Four Stars
Enjoyment Rating: Three Stars

I'm not really sure what I feel about this one. While I enjoyed the mythological style, I feel like it's hard to appreciate Daphnis and Chloe without studying it - something that I'm not doing. As someone reading it for fun I was a little distant from what was happening. This poem(?) centres around two young lovers who are unaware of how to make love to each other, and their displays of affection and concern for each other leading up to thei
Jul 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book twenty years and took it with me to Greece, as it seemed appropriate reading matter for a bucolic holiday.

It is one of the seven surviving novels, five Greek and two in Latin, from Classical Times. This is one of the Greek ones and it's one of the best of the seven. I plan to read them all again.

It's an utterly charming story about two young foundlings who grow up together and fall in love. It's typical of the style of the Ancient Greek novels, being full of adventures, pirate
Megan Hoag
Mar 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The most original, and in my opinion, most beautiful love story ever put into words (do not take that statement too seriously, I've probably read a total of 3 or 4 love stories in my lifetime and 2 of them were probably about animals or trees and whatnot).
I'm mildly obsessed with Ancient Greece, and somehow I am more grateful for the survival of this text than any other. Additionally, the tale is highly relevant to all genders, species, ages, etc. If you read the novel in its entirety, you will
Jan 15, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Extremely naive teenagers fall in love while goat/sheep herding and sloooowwwllllyyyyy explore their relationship. There is a lot of drama (intermingling gods, pirates, angry rich kids, jealous neighbours) and quite some crying in desperation. Even though the story went a bit too slow to my liking, I still enjoyed reading Daphnis and Chloe, especially because of the way the author described the surroundings and the way it gave me some insight in Grecian culture.
May 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
An adorable and light-hearted story about the discovery of love, portrayed by Daphnis, a goatherd, and Chloe, a young shepherdess in a bucolic pastoral setting.

Image: 'Springtime' by Pierre-Auguste Cot
Cassandra Kay Silva
This was a beautiful work of literature. The images and characters were very memorable. It had an earthy tone to it and was a great book to pick up for a single sitting that could be read and enjoyed many times again. It reminds me so much of what love feels like to the young.
May 21, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, translated
[3.5 Stars] Bizarre, fun and adorable. The story of two armature lovers who have no idea what "love" is and how to go through with it.
It's all rather cool but I think my favorite thing about it is how Greek it is. lol
Bookishnymph *needs hea*
I'm a hopeless romantic, so I would have liked Chloe to have been Daphnis' first. I mean, couldn't the Nymphs had told him what do do? What are Nymphs for? Other than that, I really enjoyed this book. ...more
Aug 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A single tear was shed!
Jess Grayson
Nov 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: degree-books
I loved this! This is a beautifully whimsical tale of innocence, sex, love and pirates. Perhaps my favourite piece of classical literature I've ever read! ...more
Jerin Tahapary
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The perfect pinnacle pastoral novel - ancient romantic scenery fill'd greenery in sheen stellar sweetly enlinks sexually with twins lovely. ...more
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Longus, sometimes Longos (Greek: Λόγγος), was a Greek novelist and romancer, and author of Daphnis and Chloe. Very little is known of his life, and it is assumed that he lived on the isle of Lesbos during the 2nd century AD. ...more

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