Puneet Varma

Archimedes and the Seagle

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Language  English
Pages  228 pp
Preceded by  City of Women
Author  David Ireland
Followed by  Bloodfather
3.8/5 Goodreads

Publication date  1984
ISBN  067080309X
Originally published  1984
Publisher  Viking Press
Media type  Print Hardback & Paperback
Similar  The Chantic Bird, The Unknown Industrial, A Woman of the Future, The Glass Canoe, Secrets of a Satisfying Life: Disc

Archimedes and the Seagle (1984) is a novel by Australian writer David Ireland. It won the ALS Gold Medal in 1985.


Plot summary

The Archimedes of the title is a dog, an old red setter who has learnt to read and who philosophises about the world. In particular, he is fascinated by seagulls, and one in particular, who appears to soar like an eagle, hence the "seagle".


Veronica Sen in The Canberra Times noted: "An extraordinary thing about this novel is that while being defiantly a 'novel with a message' it has sufficient charm to invite reader co-operation. Somehow it's possible to go along with the ten qualities that Archimedes proposes for all living things, or his reflections on the real meaning of an open society and the spirit of Australia. If the dog sounds priggish, be not afraid. He has the capacity to love his imperfect family as well as another dog-person, Darling, whose eyes are 'untouched, can did and happy' and who bubbles and fizzes and is 'just perfect'." And she concluded: "...I was entranced by his novel's whimsical humour, its beautifully rhythmic language and its humane insights. As a recipe for living, whether by man or dog, this very personal book of hard-won knowledge could well be tried and found true."

Awards and nominations

  • 1985 – winner ALS Gold Medal
  • References

    Archimedes and the Seagle Wikipedia

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