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Peripeteia
(187 words)

[German version]

(ἡ περιπέτεια/hē peripéteia). Literally 'turn-about, reversal' of a situation, mostly of fate, often unexpected and as a rule from good to bad (e.g. Aristot. Rhet. 1371b 10). The concept is central to Aristotle's Poetics (Poet. 11,1452a 22-29), where P. is defined as the reversal of what was to be achieved into its opposite. This should happen by probability (κατὰ τὸ εἰκός) or by necessity (κατὰ τὸ ἀναγκαῖον). Together with  anagnorisis P. is a characteristic of complex narrative structures ('plots', μῦθοι πεπλεγμένοι: 10,1452a 12-21), whereas simp…

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Zimmermann, Bernhard (Freiburg), “Peripeteia”, 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 27 October 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1574-9347_bnp_e914440>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510



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