21-26 of 26 Results  for:

  • Greek Literature x
  • Latin Literature x
Clear all

Article

Revision happens when a text is changed. Its most common name in Greek was διόρθωσις; in Latin, emendatio. It was practised by writers of all styles and levels of ability, working alone and in consultation with others, and in many different genres. Evidence for revision comes from papyri and from descriptions in ancient literature. It occurred on papyri, in wax tablets, and in authors’ minds as they prepared a text, and it was understood by ancient writers as either the inevitable consequence of error or as a valuable exercise leading to greater cognitive and political skill. In addition to reminding us of the fluidity of textuality and the always contingent nature of every literary formation, the study of revision provokes reflection on the relationship between literature and natural language, and on writing’s place in social exchange.

Article

Marilyn B. Skinner

The basic dominance-submission model of sexual relations, involving a hierarchical distinction between the active and passive roles, was the same in Greek and Roman cultures and remained unchanged throughout classical antiquity. However, we find subtle modifications reflected in the literary tradition from the Homeric age to imperial Rome. In Homer and Hesiod, heterosexual relations are the only recognized form of sexual congress, and consensual sex is mutually pleasurable. Forced sex, in the form of abduction and rape, also occurs in epic narrative. Pederasty became a literary theme in Greek lyric poetry of the archaic age. In classical Athens, discourses of sexuality were tied to political ideology, because self-control was a civic virtue enabling the free adult male householder to manage his estate correctly and serve the city-state in war and peace. Tragedy illustrates the dire impact of unbridled erōs, while comedy mocks those who trespass against moderation or violate gender norms, and forensic oratory seeks to disqualify such offenders from participating in government. Philosophical schools disagreed over the proper place of erōs in a virtuous life.

Article

silence  

R. B. Rutherford

Narrators, dramatists, and orators know that there are times when silence is far more effective than the most powerful speech. Only a brief selection can be attempted. The chief motives for silence in Greek epic and drama are intense grief (compare Job 2: 10–3: 1), deep anger, or some other form of emotional distress (including passionate love). Examples are *Homer, Il. 1. 511 ff. (*Zeus), Od. 11. 563 ff. (*Ajax), the latter imitated by Verg.Aen. 6. 469 ff. (*Dido); Aesch.Agam. 1035 ff. (the role of *Cassandra), paralleled in the lost Niobe and Myrmidons and parodied by Ar.Frogs 833 ff., cf. 907–26; Soph. 1252 ff. (Oedipus); Eur.Hipp. 310 and elsewhere (on the theme of speech and silence in that play see Knox). *Herodotus (1) uses the same technique (e.g. 1. 86. 3–4). In a slightly different category comes Pylades in Aesch.

Article

Jan Kwapisz

The term technopaignia is primarily used with reference to the six Greek figure poems of the Palatine Anthology (Anth. Pal. 15.21–22, 24–27); in likely chronological order, these are Axe, Wings of Eros, and Egg by Simias of Rhodes, Syrinx, attributed to Theocritus, and two Altars. The lines of these poems vary in length, through metrical manipulation, to form the outlines of the described objects. The emergence of pattern poetry in the Hellenistic period reflects the broader penchant for bridging art and literature and was due to the development of book culture, including in particular the tradition of metrical experimentalism. The term technopaignia is at times extended to include Roman picture poems, such as the fragmentarily attested figure poem Phoenix by Laevius, a snake-shaped graffito poem from Pompeii (CIL IV 1595), and the highly refined visual poetry of Optatianus Porfyrius. The six Greek technopaignia and the grid poems of Optatianus Porfyrius are followed by a long line of imitators in the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and beyond. The term technopaignia is also used more generally for all sorts of ancient linguistic games.

Article

M. D. Reeve

Textual criticism sets out to establish what a text originally said or meant to say. Anyone who checks a garbled message with the sender has given a faultless demonstration of it. Classical texts, which have mostly come down through a succession of copies, present stiffer challenges. Even some inscriptions (see epigraphy) are corrupt.Politian (Poliziano; see scholarship, classical, history of) in 1489 first refined ancient methods by showing that for historical reconstruction authorities were less to be counted than weighed and derivative ones ignored. He made such arresting discoveries as that all copies of Cicero's Ad familiares in circulation derived from one misbound ancestor. For 300 years these insights were seldom exploited even by critics good at picking out valuable witnesses, like Heinsius and Bentley; and when genealogical classification finally took hold, among editors of the Bible in the later 18th cent. and of classical texts in the 1820s, it was not until 1872 that the historical linguist Johannes Schmidt framed the cardinal principle, still often flouted, that in a family only shared innovations indicate a closer relationship.

Article

Lisa Irene Hau

Tragic history is a phrase coined in the late 19th century to describe a certain type of Hellenistic history writing, which was thought to have Peripatetic underpinnings, and whose main proponents were Duris of Samos and Phylarchus (of Athens or Naucratis). The expression gained currency quickly and is still widely used to designate un-Polybian, sensationalist, and emotionally involved historiography from the Hellenistic period (the works of which have all been lost), in spite of the current communis opinio among specialists that there was no real “school” of tragic history.Tragic history is a phrase coined in the late 19th century to describe a certain type of Hellenistic history writing, which was thought to have Peripatetic underpinnings, and whose main proponents were Duris of Samos and Phylarchus (of Athens or Naucratis). The expression gained currency quickly and is still widely used to designate un-Polybian, sensationalist, and emotionally involved historiography from the Hellenistic period (the works of which have all been lost), in spite of the current .