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Perseus Project

The Perseus Home Page can be accessed from any networked computer using a World Wide Web browser. This is the best resource for discovering future directions in classical sources. For instance Renaissance and Latin texts have been added to the original scope as well as an on-line running commentary to the Odyssey.

Perseus is an evolving digital library, engineering interactions through time, space, and language. Our primary goal is to bring a wide range of source materials to as large an audience as possible. We anticipate that greater accessibility to the sources for the study of the humanities will strengthen the quality of questions, lead to new avenues of research, and connect more people through the connection of ideas.

Perseus 2.0: Interactive Sources and Studies on Ancient Greece; Platform-Independent Version available for Windows and Macintosh™ systems, editor in chief Gregory Crane, The Perseus Project  (Yale University Press: Comprehensive Edition 4 CD-ROMS: ISBN 0300080921 $350.00; Concise Edition 1 CD-ROM includes only thumbnails of the photo archive; ISBN 0300080913 $150.00)

Named for the Hellenic hero who explored the world to its most distant reaches, Perseus is a remarkable, award-winning digital resource that is revolutionizing the study of ancient Greece by expanding the ways in which ancient Greek literature, history, art, and archaeology can be examined. Now available for the first time for PCs and Windows-based computers, Perseus has been widely praised as one of the most innovative educational tools ever published Perseus is the work of a collaborative team including philologists, historians, and archaeologists.

Perseus is represents a major innovation in how to access information about the classical world. A collaborative effort developed by specialists who have taken pains to present vast stores of information usually only available in major museums or research libraries is now are accessible to any enterprising novice student. The heart of the Comprehensive Edition is the huge picture archive especially of sculpture and illustrated pottery that makes close study of visual and textual sources. The Concise Edition provides the full textual and interactive resources but only provides thumbnails of the picture library this can inhibit serious study of the visual record. This work is an indispensable tool for any serious study of Classic Greek culture and history. The variety of approaches to linking the content makes Perseus an effective interactive teaching tool. And research resource that exhibits the fuller potential of multimedia.

Perseus 2.0 is the most comprehensive collection of primary sources and supporting reference materials on ancient Greece ever created. It contains over 380 texts in Greek and in translation, representing all of the major authors of the classical period and others, extensive morphological tools, art and archaeology resources, and much more. Superb navigational tools and hypertextual links make searching this enormous resource quick, intuitive, and effective. This unparalleled program supports teaching and study in literature, art, history, and language and is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in the ancient world.

Comprehensive Edition
Four CD-ROMs contain the complete textual database, encyclopedia, lexicon, and atlas, plus the complete visual database of 25,000 full-screen images.

For the Comprehensive Edition of Perseus 2.0, we recommend a multiple-disc CD- ROM drive or that you plan on devoting 2 gigabytes of your hard drive for full installation.

Concise Edition
One CD-ROM provides the complete textual database, encyclopedia, lexicon, and atlas with 5,200 full-screen images and an online catalogue of all 25,000 images in small format (1.3" x 1.1") for reference.

Contents of Perseus 2.0

  • complete works of 31 authors in Greek, many with modern English translations, others with classic English translations from the Loeb Classical Library: Aeschines, Aeschylus, Andocides, Antiphon, Apollodorus, Aristophanes, Aristotle*, Bacchylides, Demades, Demosthenes, Dinarchus, Diodorus Siculus*, Euripides, Herodotus, Hesiod, Homer, Homeric Hymns, Hyperides, Isaeus, Isocrates, Lycurgus, Lysias, Pausanias, Pindar, Plato, Plutarch*, Pseudo-Xenophon, Sophocles, Strabo*, Thucydides, and Xenophon. *selected works
  • many texts are accompanied by notes, including those of Sir J. G. Frazer to Apollodorus
  • collection of 25,000 images of architecture, sculpture, coins, vases, and sites, making Perseus the largest photographic database of ancient Greece ever published
  • detailed catalogue entries for 1,420 vases, 366 sculptures and sculptural groups, 523 coins, 387 buildings, and 179 sites, linked to in-depth background essays
  • extensive atlas including schematic, satellitle, and topographical maps of ancient and present-day Greece on which 1,644 sites can be plotted
  • online version of the Liddell-Scott Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon (35,000 words)
  • hypertextual encyclopedia of major historical and mythological figures, places, and terms
  • collection of secondary resources on Greek vase painters, sculptors, and history, including Caskey and Beazley's vase catalogue, Attic Vase Paintings in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
  • chronological summary of the major historical and cultural events of fifth-century B.C. Greece with more than 2,000 hypertextual links to the rest of the Perseus database
  • bibliographical database with full citations for over 2,630 works

The features of Perseus 2.0 allow you to:

  • pinpoint searches with the Browser tool using 1,437 keywords as well as specific criteria such as object type, museum, and context
  • easily access and save search results, build a series of searches, and return to previously completed search paths without re-executing them
    plot up to 1,644 sites on color satellite images or traditional line maps, measure the distance between any two selected sites (e.g., Athens and Sparta), and plot sites in any user-specified region
  • search for both complete and partial English words in the Perseus texts with the comprehensive English Index; search the complete database or limit your search to a specific author, a category of art objects, or a single resource, such as the encyclopedia
  • use the Greek Word Frequencies function to get a statistical tabulation of the usage of Greek words in the texts included in Perseus
  • read textual descriptions and view thumbnail-sized images to make searching easier
  • take advantage of online help, available at any point within Perseus


System Requirements:

Windows users:
Windows 95, 98 or NT™. (May run on Windows 3.x with Win32s.)
486 PCs and above
16 MB of total RAM
4 MB of free space on hard disk
CD-ROM drive
SVGA or VGA monitor with 256 colors

Macintosh users:
PowerPC processor or later
Mac OS system 8 or later
at least 5 MB of free RAM; 10 MB preferred
3.5 MB of free space on hard disk
CD-ROM drive
color monitor

 The Internet provides several connections to Perseus users. The publisher offers a free one month trial purchase of either edition through their Website.

The Perseus users forum is an excellent way to communicate with other users and get the latest information about Perseus.

Collaborators initially formed the project to construct a large, heterogeneous collection of materials, textual and visual, on the Archaic and Classical Greek world. The Perseus Project has published two CD-ROMs and created the on-line Perseus Digital Library. Recent expansion into Latin texts and tools and Renaissance materials has served to add more coverage within Perseus and has prompted the project to explore new ways of presenting complex resources for electronic publication. Yale University Press released Perseus 2.0 (Macintosh only) in 1996 and Platform Independent Perseus 2.0 in 2000. Nearly four times the size of Perseus 1.0, Perseus 2.0 features additional art and archaeology materials and more texts. Since 1995, the Perseus WWW site has grown into the Perseus Digital Library, an on-line publication of the materials contained on the Perseus CDs as well as new areas of research. Recent expansions include Roman materials, Renaissance texts, and new lexicography tools for Greek and Latin. Perseus is a non-profit enterprise.