Hyblaea avena. Reception of Theocritus in Greek and Latin Literature of the Roman Imperial and Early Modern Period

Pipes being handed down from one shepherd to another in the tradition of music making can easily be imagined as a scenario in real life, whether in ancient times or today. And indeed, some pipes from antiquity are still in use 2000 years later, at least metaphorically speaking. Easy to track are the ones Theocritus used in creating the genre of pastoral poetry with idyllic landscapes and characters that seem to be transported from their real life duties and dialogues into the realm of verses. His pipes are depicted as the instrument of the predecessor offered to a poet of a new era and language in Virgil’s 10th eclogue (Verg. ecl. 10,51: carmina pastoris Siculi modulabor avena), and are from there given to another even later poet in Theocritus’ and Virgil’s footsteps, Calpurnius Siculus (Calp. 4,62f.: Tityrus hanc [sc. fistulam] habuit, cecinit qui primus in istis / montibus Hyblaea modulabile carmen avena).

DATE: 15-16/11/2018

LOCATION: Bergische Universität Wuppertal (Wuppertal, Germany)

ORGANIZER: Jun.-Prof. Dr. Stefan Weise (Bergische Universität Wuppertal); Anne-Elisabeth Beron, M.A. (Bergische Universität Wuppertal)

INFO: weise@uni-wuppertal.de – beron@uni-wuppertal.de

2 PhD positions in the field of Hellenistic festival culture

We are pleased to announce 2 PhD positions in the field of Hellenistic festival culture, at the University of Groningen, starting 1 February, 2019.
Application deadline is 9 September, 2018 before midnight (Dutch time). For details, also on how to apply, see the announcement:
A third related PhD project on Rome-oriented cults and festivals will soon be advertised separately as part of the Anchoring Innovation research initiative of the Dutch National Research School in Classical Studies – OIKOS – https://www.ru.nl/oikos/anchoring-innovation/
More information on the projects may be found at: https://tinyurl.com/connectinggreeks
contact via Prof. O.M. van Nijf: o.m.van.nijf@rug.nl  or Dr. C.G. Williamson: c.g.williamson@rug.nl

Kind regards,

Dr. Christina Williamson
Asst. Professor Ancient History
University of Groningen
P.O. Box 716 | 9700AS Groningen | NETHERLANDS

The Epigrams of Crinagoras of Mytilene

Maria Ypsilanti

ISBN-13: 978-0199565825
ISBN-10: 0199565821
Oxford University Press – 536 pages
Relatively little is known of the life of Crinagoras of Mytilene: a Greek epigrammatist and diplomat who lived between the first centuries BC and AD, he was despatched to Rome as part of the embassies to Julius Caesar and Octavian, was held in high regard by his contemporaries, and divided his life between his home of Mytilene and the centre of the Roman Empire, where he was acquainted with the family of the emperor Augustus. Much of the detail we have to flesh out this brief account comes from his poems, which, in keeping with the genre, draw extensively on his personal experience and on the events of the day to provide a key source for the circumstances of his life. They are also eloquent and dynamic in their own right, and as a corpus they cover a wide thematic range: many were inspired by contemporary political or military events or by personal experiences, observations, or contemplation, though they also include several sepulchral epigrams concerning the deaths of persons the poet knew, and many which were composed as notes to be sent with gifts to friends or acquaintances.

This new edition collects together all fifty-one of the surviving epigrams which have come down to us as part of the Greek Anthology. Presented here in a new critical text alongside engaging English translations, they are analysed in detail in an incisive introduction and exegetic word-by-word commentary, both as individual poems and as part of the corpus as a whole. With discussion throughout covering not only textual and stylistic matters, but also literary and historical context and Crinagoras’ place within his social and cultural milieu, this edition provides a guide to the life and work of this understudied poet which is both authoritative and accessible.

The Poets of Alexandria

Susan A. Stephens

9781848858794. –  192 pages
I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd

Alexandria was the greatest of the new cities founded by Alexander the Great as his armies swept eastward. It was ruled by his successors, the Ptolemies, who presided over one of the richest and most productive periods in the whole of Greek literature. Susan A Stephens here reveals a cultural world in transition: reverential of the compositions of the past (especially after construction of the great library, repository for all previous Greek oeuvres), but at the same time forward-looking and experimental, willing to make use of previous forms of writing in exciting new ways. The author examines Alexandria’s poets in turn. She discusses the strikingly avant-garde Aetia of Callimachus; the idealized pastoral forms of Theocritus (which anticipated the invention of fiction); and the neo-Homerian epic of Apollonius, the Argonautica, with its impressive combination of narrative grandeur and psychological acuity. She shows that all three poets were innovators, even while they looked to the past for inspiration: drawing upon Homer, Hesiod, Pindar and the lyric poets, they emphasized stories and material that were entirely relevant to their own progressive cosmopolitan environment.

Susan A Stephens is Sara Hart Kimball Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Classics at Stanford University. Her books include Seeing Double: Intercultural Poetics in Ptolemaic Alexandria (2003), Callimachus in Context: From Plato to the Augustan Poets (with Benjamin Acosta-Hughes, 2012) and Callimachus: The Hymns (2015).