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Epigoni

(430 words)

Author(s): Eder, Walter (Berlin) | Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
(ἐπίγονοι; epígonoi, ‘future generations’, ‘descendants’). [German version] [1] Second generation of successors of Alexander [4] the Great Second generation of successors of Alexander [4] the Great in regions of the former Alexandrian Empire. Regarding the term Epigoni, see  Diadochi and Epigoni. Eder, Walter (Berlin) [German version] [2] Early Greek epic Lost early Greek epic (only one hexameter certain to belong to it has survived, and that is the introductory verse: F 1 Bernabé = F 1 Davies, see below) which belonged to the Theban part of th…

Theseis

(243 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Θησηΐς; Thēsēḯs). Title of numerous (exact number unknown) poetic reworkings of the Athenian Theseus legend. Aristotle [6] (Aristot. Poet. 1451a 16-22) speaks of "all those poets who have created an Heraklēḯs, a Theseis and similar poetic works." As with other mythical subjects the production of further variations on the theme, in accordance with contemporary tastes, continued in Greek and Latin until the Imperial period. As a rule we know only the authors' names [4. 1046], apart from two cases: (1) of an anonymous hexametric Theseis, which presumably came into…

Oechalias halosis

(170 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Οἰχαλίας ἅλωσις/ Oichalías hálōsis, “The capture of Oechalia”). Lost early Greek epos of the Heracles epics, relating the conquest of the city of Oechalia (probably [3]) by Heracles (= point of departure for Soph. Trach.). 1 fragment (Heracles speaks to Iole) and 3 attestations (= fr. 2-3 in [1] and [2]) survive, which admittedly are only about the correct localisation of the city and the number of children of its royal couple, Eurytus [1] and Antioche (or Antiope). Ascribed either …

Nestor

(1,290 words)

Author(s): Visser, Edzard (Basle) | Günther, Linda-Marie (Munich) | Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
(Νέστωρ; Néstōr). [German version] [1] Son of Nesleus Important figure in Greek mythology, particularly in the legend of the Trojan War. N. represents the aging warrior who has lost some of his former physical strength but due to his wealth of experience fulfills an important function in the group of leaders and in the Greek army. N. is the son of Neleus (thus his fixed epithet Neleid [Νηλεΐδης; Nēleΐdēs]) and of Chloris [4]. He has two brothers by the names of Chromius and Periclymenus, who are of no mythological significance, and a sister Pero who appears to h…

Doloneia

(314 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Δολώνεια; Dolṓneia, ‘poem about Dolon’), a probably old (cf. e.g. Διομήδεος ἀριστείη already in Hdt. 2,116,11; further examples in [1. 148] term for the 10th book of the Iliad, in which the Trojan   Dólōn (a name etymologically derived from δόλος: ‘guile’, so perhaps ‘Foxy’, ‘Wily’, ‘Sneaky’ [2. 186]) plays a major role. In the night after the unsuccessful embassy to Achilles both the Achaeans and the Trojans send scouts into their opponents' camp: Odysseus and Diomedes come upon Dolon, take h…

Philology

(54,308 words)

Author(s): Landfester, Manfred (Gießen RWG) | Latacz, Joachim (Basle) | Schmitz, Thomas A. | Schmidt, Peter Lebrecht | Schwindt, Jürgen Paul (Bielefeld)
Landfester, Manfred (Gießen RWG) I. Greek (CT) A. Byzantine Philology (ca. 800-1453) (CT) [German version] 1. Terminology (CT) As the scientific study of the literature and language of Greek Antiquity, Byzantine philology, in the tradition of ancient Greek philology, meant primarily grammar, constitution of texts and explanation of texts. It was essentially humanistic, for it understood itself as a means for the linguistic, literary, intellectual and moral renewal of the present through texts from Antiquity. The…

Epic

(6,829 words)

Author(s): Neumann, Hans (Berlin) | Latacz, Joachim (Basle) | Courtney, Edward (Charlottesville, VA)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East The convention in ancient oriental studies is to maintain a distinction between epic and myth in so far as the protagonists of each genre are concerned, even though, in respect of genre theory and style, this remains difficult and contentious [1. 145-153; 2. 1-24]: in epic the actors are (heroicized) people, whereas myths inhabit the realm of the divine. Sumerian epic literature is woven around the legendary kings of the 1st dynasty of Uruk: Enmerkar, Lugalbanda a…

Panyas(s)is

(788 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
(Πανύασις/ Panýasis, rarely Πανύασσις/ Panýassis; also epigraphically attested in the form Πανύατις/ Panýatis (Syll3 45, I.52-54, Halicarnassus): originally a Carian name with the /s/-phoneme [1. 5f.] foreign to Greek ears). One of the four (or five) canonical Greek epic poets (Homer [1], Hesiod, [Peisander [6]], Panyassis, Antimachus [3] of Colophon). [German version] A. Life Born in 505/500 BC in Halicarnassus, where he died in 455/50, older cousin [1. 6] of Herodotus [1], of a distinguished aristocratic family that opposed the tyrant Lygdamis [3], who came to power c. 460; P.…

Rhapsodes

(749 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
(ῥαψῳδοί/ rhapsōidoí). Professional reciters of (as a rule epic) poetry. The profession emerged in Greece in the 8th cent. BC as a consequence of the transition from speech to writing as a medium for the transmission of information (Literacy/Orality). [German version] A. Meaning and connotation The first component of the word is the stem of the verb ῥάπτειν/ rháptein, 'sew' (cf. modern Greek ῥαπτο-μηχανή/ rhapto-mēchanḗ, 'sewing machine'); the second element the stem of the noun ᾠδή/ ōidḗ (< ἀοιδή/ aoidḗ), 'song', in the role of object effected. The meaning is thus: 'he wh…

Titanomachy

(508 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Τιτανομαχία; Titanomachía). The battle of many years between the Olympic gods under Zeus against the Titans for world-domination. The cosmological-theological meaning of this invention is the revolutionary displacement of a primal state marked by the ('titanic') powers of nature through a regular ('civilized') world order (s., in contrast, Gigantomachy). The probably primeval subject that originated in the oral tradition was a popular source for literary and artistic adaptations d…

Phocais

(149 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Φωκαΐς/ Phōkaḯs). Lost Archaic epic about the city of Phocaea in Ionia in Asia Minor, probably part of a complex of early historical epics about regions and cities [4]. Attested only in a Life of Homer from the Imperial period (Vita Homeri Herodotea 16 = 10,3-7 in [3]): “the inhabitants claimed that the so-called P. had been composed by Homer in Phocaea”. Thus it seems that the author and time of composition were unknown even to later Phocaeans. No fragments survive. Possibly a so…

Oedipodea

(298 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (ἡ Οἰδιπόδεια/ hē Oidipódeia, also ἡ Οἰδιποδία/ hē Oidipodía and τὰ Οἰδιπόδια/tà Oidipódia). Lost early Greek epic belonging to the Epic Cycle, together with the Thebais and the Epigoni [2] part of its Theban section; it probably told the beginning of the legend of Thebes. According to IG XIV 1292 (= T 1 in [1], 1st cent. AD) it contained 6600 hexameters. Other than T 1, only one fragment (2 hexameters) remains, two late summaries of content and an extensive summary of the story of Oedipus, compiled from sev…

Cypria

(590 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (τὰ Κύπρια; tà Kýpria; also τὰ Κύπρια ἔπη; tà Kýpria épē, τὰ Κυπριακά; tà Kypriaká, αἱ Κυπριακαὶ ἱστορίαι; hai kupriakai historíai, its title derived from the dominance of Aphrodite = Cypris in the causality of the plot [3; cf. 9. 287]). This epic, a part of the  epic cycle, recounts in 11 bks. (according to Proclus) the history of Troy prior to the better-known Iliad ( Homerus [1]). Approximately 50 hexameters in 12 [1] or respectively 10 [2] frs. are extant; in addition there are short summaries in  Proclus and  Apollodorus, as well as nume…

Homeric question

(7,185 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle) | Kurz, Gerhard (Gießen RWG)
Latacz, Joachim (Basle) I. General (CT) [German version] A. Structure of the Discipline (CT) The Homeric Question (HQ) can be divided into a question in the narrower and in the wider sense. In its most simple form, the HQ in its narrower sense reads: "are the Iliad and the Odyssey the works of one (possibly one and the same) poet or those of several poets?" Phrased like this, the HQ represented a specialist philological problem, mainly of the 19th cent., but with offshoots into the 1960s. - In its wider sense, the HQ asks: "what is the genesis…

Thebais

(397 words)

Author(s): Latacz, Joachim (Basle)
[German version] (Θηβαΐς; Thēbaḯs). Title of numerous poetic accounts of the Theban cycle (Thebes [2] III.). Only the Latin T. by Statius [II 2] is entirely extant. We have fragments (1) of the 'Cyclic T.' (i.e. pertaining to the Epic cycle), (2) of the T. by Antimachus [3]. From the 'Cyclic T.' 8 testimonies and 10 fragments survive (in [1]), including 6 verbatim with a total of 20 hexameters. Still recognisable from the content are: (1) invocation of the Muse (Muse, invocation of the) with 'Argos' (not 'Thebes') given as the subject ma…
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