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A finely crafted epic and literary monstrosity from the seventeenth-century "poet of the marvelous": the harrowing account, in four bloody cantos, of King Herod and his campaign to murder the male infants of his kingdom to prevent the loss of his throne to the prophesied King of the Jews. The book starts in the pits of Hell, where the Devil stokes the flames of Herod's paranoid bloodlust in his troubled sleep, and concludes in the heights of Heaven where the "unarmed champions" march on to eternal glory. In between is an account of physical and political brutality that unfortunately holds too clear a mirror to world events today. The Massacre of the Innocents describes unbelievable cruelty while championing the nobility of suffering, all brilliantly translated and presented in ottava rima.

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