Delivering extraordinary scope, A significant other to Hellenistic Literature in 30 newly commissioned essays explores the social and highbrow contexts of literature creation within the Hellenistic interval, and examines the connection among Hellenistic and past literature. presents a panoramic serious exam of Hellenistic literature, together with the works of well–respected poets along lesser–known historic, philosophical, and clinical prose of the interval Explores how the indigenous literatures of Hellenized lands stimulated Greek literature and the way Greek literature prompted Jewish, close to japanese, Egyptian, and Roman literary works.
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Additional info for A Companion to Hellenistic Literature
The manner of the crossing is telling. On the European side of the Hellespont Alexander paid his respects at the sanctuary of the hero Protesilaus, the first man ashore in the campaign against Troy. In doing this he recalled the heroic age while also contrasting his own religious observance with the earlier Persian desecration of the shrine (Hdt. 116–20). S. 17; Arr. An. 5; Stewart 1993: 78). Imitation here blurs the boundaries between history and myth, literature and life. This evocation of the Iliad and the age of heroes is further reinforced by a visit to Troy.
This should not, however, be taken to imply that Roman literature simply took over Greek concepts, forms, and styles; rather, it assimilated them, individuating itself from Hellenistic literature with great success. This process of assimilation and individuation culminated in the first century but began as early as the third. In their adaptation of Greek poetic genres, Roman authors managed to maintain their own voice from the start. Enough survives of the earliest Roman epics by Livius Andronicus, Naevius, and Ennius to demonstrate a keen awareness of Hellenistic sensitivities (Clauss).
While earlier praise poems, from the Homeric Hymns to Simonides’ encomia, were first and foremost scripts to be performed at some sort of public occasion, many of their Hellenistic incarnations are more redolent of the library than the festival (Bulloch). The borders between hymn, encomium, and epyllion are often blurred, as gods, heroes, and kings are matched up in poems that praise but also, as in mythological epic, show their subjects’ human side. In evidence throughout the extant corpus is a novel mixture of traditional religious-political thought and contemporary ideologies, from Egyptian concepts of kingship, as in Callimachus and Theocritus, to Stoic theology, as in Cleanthes.
A Companion to Hellenistic Literature