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The 77 Greatest Works of Greek Literature

This selection of literature from Greece is based on the continuing research carried out for The Greatest Literature of All Time list and is additionally informed by the views of local readers, writers, critics and scholars.

It encompasses the greatest works of Greek authors in all forms, genres, cultures and periods.

An odd feature of this list though is that it spans two widely differentiated historical and cultural epochs—ancient and modern Greece. Even the two geographical areas referred to by the word "Greece" are much different. What we call the ancient Greek world comprised a wide swath of eastern Mediterranean civilization, including regions we no longer consider part of the country known as Greece. Nonetheless there is enough continuity between the peoples of old and new Greece to make a common listing of greatest works worthwhile.

This list focuses on major creative—mainly fictional—works, although some shorter or nonfiction writing of literary significance may also be considered.

Latest update: July 23, 2023

c.750 BCE
missing graphic
Iliad
by Homer, Greece, long poem
 
missing graphic
The Odyssey
by Homer, Greece, long poem
c.700 BCE
Theogony
by Hesiod, Greece, long poem
 
Works and Days
by Hesiod, Greece, long poem
c.610–580 BCE
Sappho's Poems
by Sappho, Greece
Poetry collection
c.600-550 BCE
Aesop's Fables
by Aesop, Greece
Story collection
520–440 BCE
Epinician Odes
by Pindar, Greece
Poetry collection
c.504–501 BCE
Fragments
by Heraclitus, Greece
Poetry collection
c.475 BCE
Olympian
by Pindar, Greece
Poetry collection
472 BCE
The Persianse
by Aeschylus, Greece
Play
467 BCE
Seven Against Thebes
by Aeschylus, Greece
Play
c.462 BCE
The Suppliant Maidens
by Aeschylus, Greece
Play
458 BCE
The Oresteia
by Aeschylus, Greece, play series
c.450–425 BCE
Prometheus Bound
by Aeschylus, Greece
Play
 
The Women of Trachis
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
442–441 BCE
missing graphic
Antigone
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
 
Ajax
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
438 BCE
Alcestis
by Euripides, Greece
Play
431 BCE
Medea
by Euripides, Greece
Play
c.430 BCE
Children of Heracles
by Euripides, Greece
Play
 
missing graphic
Oedipus Rex
by Sophocles, Greece
Play also known as Oedipus; Oedipus Tyrannus; Oedipus the King
c.428 BCE
Andromache
by Euripides, Greece
Play
 
Hippolytus
by Euripides, Greece
Play
c.427 BCE
Hecuba
by Euripides, Greece
Play
425 BCE
The Acharnians
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
424 BCE
The Knights
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
423 BCE
The Clouds
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
 
The Suppliants
by Euripides, Greece
Play
422 BCE
The Wasps
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
c.420–410 BCE
Electra
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
418 BCE
Electra
by Euripides, Greece
Play
c.416 BCE
Herakles
by Euripides, Greece
Play
415 BCE
The Trojan Women
by Euripides, Greece
Play
414 BCE
The Birdse
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
414–412 BCE
Ion
by Euripides, Greece
Play
412 BCE
Helen
by Euripides, Greece
Play
411 BCE
Lysistrata
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
 
Women at the Thesmophoria
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
409 BCE
Philoctetes
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
406 BCE
Bacchae
by Euripides, Greece
Play
c.405 BCE
Cyclops
by Euripides, Greece
Play
405 BCE
The Frogs
by Aristophanes, Greece
Play
401 BCE
Oedipus at Colonus
by Sophocles, Greece
Play
c.385–370 BCE
The Symposium
by Plato, Greece
Nonfiction
c.380 BCE
missing graphic
Republic
by Plato, Greece
Dialogue
 
Meno
by Plato, Greece
Nonfiction
c.0370 BCE
Cyropaedia
by Xenophon, Greece
Biography
 
Anabasis
by Xenophon, Greece
Nonfiction
317–316 BCE
Dyskolos
by Menander, Greece
Play
c.270–240 BCE
Aetia
by Callimachus, Greece, long poem
c.270 BCE
Epigrams
by Asclepiades of Samos, Greece
Poetry collection
 
Idylls
by Theocritus, Greece
Poetry collection
c.250 BCE
Voyage of the Argonauts
by Apollonius of Rhodes, Greece, long poem
c.50
Callirhoe
by Chariton, Greece
Novel
c.100
Parallel Lives
by Plutarch, Greece
Biography
c.150
Daphnis and Chloe
by Longus, Greece
Novel
c.500
Hero and Leander
by Musaeus Grammaticus, Greece, long poem
c.800
Digenes Akritas
by Anonymous, Greece, long poem
c.1600
Erotokritos
by Vikentios Kornaros, Greece, Long Poem
1866
The Papess Joanne
by Emmanuel Roidis, Greece
Novel
1935
Poems
by Constantine Cavafy, Greece
Poetry collection
 
Mythistorema
by George Seferis, Greece
Poetry collection
1938
The Odyssey, a Modern Sequel
by Nikos Kazantzakis, Greece, long poem
1946
Zorba the Greek
by Nikos Kazantzakis, Greece
Novel
1955
The Last Temptation of Christ
by Nikos Kazantzákis, Greece
Novel
1959
To Axion Esti
by Odysseas Kazantzákis, Greece, long poem
1962
The Third Wedding
by Costas Taktsis, Greece
Novel
1967
Z
by Vassilis Vassilikos, Greece
Novel
1970
Fool's Gold
by Maro Douka, Greece
Novel
1989
The Life of Ismail Ferik Pasha
by Rhea Galanaki, Greece
Novel
1990
The Daughter
by Pavlos Matesis, Greece
Novel
1991
Astradeni
by Eugenia Fakinou, Greece
Novel
1992
Uncle Petros and Goldbach's Conjecture
by Apostolos Doxiadis, Greece
Novel
1995
The Late-Night News
by Petros Markaris, Greece
Novel
2009
Z213: Exit
by Dimitris Lyacos, Greece
Novella
2013
God Is My Witness
by Makis Tsitas, Greece
Novel
2014
Victory
by Christos Chomenidis, Greece
Novel

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