Brill’s New Pauly

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Literary genre
(2,454 words)

(Greek εἶδος/eîdos or γένος/génos; Lat. genus).

[German version]

I. Concept

Literary genres are the result of literature being divided into groups. Poetry and/or prose are classified by a culture or its interpreters, based on the principle of similarity - the occasion on which they are presented, audience, topic, musical style, etc. The concept of ‘genre’ has been culturally determined since the dawn of history, because the meaning of a work depends not leas…

Cite this page
Hunter, Richard (Cambridge) and Hardie, Philip R. (Cambridge), “Literary genre”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 26 November 2020 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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