Homer the preclassic by Gregory Nagy

By Gregory Nagy

Homer the Preclassic considers the advance of the Homeric poems-in specific the Iliad and Odyssey-during the time once they have been nonetheless a part of the oral culture. Gregory Nagy lines the evolution of rival “Homers” and the various types of Homeric poetry during this pretextual interval, reconstructed over a time-frame extending again from the 6th century BCE to the Bronze Age. exact of their linguistic element and striking of their implications, Nagy's insights conjure the Greeks' nostalgia for the imagined “epic area” of Troy and for the resonances and distortions this mythic earlier supplied to some of the Greek constituencies for whom the Homeric poems have been so crucial and definitive.

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On this variant καθέσωσιν, see Martin 2000b:421n61. 14 Homer and the Athenian Empire αὐτοῖς σὺν παίδεσσι καὶ αἰδοίῃς ἀλόχοισιν. οἱ δέ σε πυγμαχίῃ τε καὶ ὀρχηθμῷ17 καὶ ἀοιδῇ μνησάμενοι τέρπουσιν, ὅταν στήσωνται ἀγῶνα. 150 [End of point of insertion. Now, to resume what Thucydides is saying . . 5] ὅτι δὲ καὶ μουσικῆς ἀγὼν ἦν καὶ ἀγωνιούμενοι ἐφοίτων ἐν τοῖσδε αὖ δηλοῖ, ἅ ἐστιν ἐκ τοῦ αὐτοῦ προοιμίου· τὸν γὰρ Δηλιακὸν χορὸν τῶν γυναικῶν ὑμνήσας ἐτελεύτα τοῦ ἐπαίνου ἐς τάδε τὰ ἔπη, ἐν οἷς καὶ ἑαυτοῦ ἐπεμνήσθη· ἀλλ’ ἄγεθ’, ἱλήκοι μὲν Ἀπόλλων Ἀρτέμιδι ξύν, χαίρετε δ’ ὑμεῖς πᾶσαι.

One of them is Vita 1, sometimes 1. I offer the following system for referring to these Lives (with page numbers as printed by Allen 1912): Vita 1: Vita Herodotea, pp. 192–218 Vita 2: Certamen, pp. 225–38 Vita 3a: Plutarchean vita, pp. 238–44 Vita 3b: Plutarchean vita, pp. 244–45 Vita 4: Vita quarta, pp. 245–46 Vita 5: Vita quinta, pp. 247–50 Vita 6: Vita sexta (the “Roman Vita”), pp. 250–53 Vita 7: Vita septima, by way of Eustathius, pp. 253–54 Vita 8: Vita by way of Tzetzes, pp. 254–55 Vita 9: Vita by way of Eustathius (on Iliad IV 17), p.

This thinking of Thucydides is a most valuable piece of evidence about ancient ideas of Homer. 36 HOM E R A N D T H E PA N ION IA N F E ST I VA L S OF DE LO S A N D B EYON D In the verses of the Homeric Hymn to Apollo quoted by Thucydides (146–50), the speaker pictures Delos as a festive center where representatives of all Ionian cities converge in a grand assembly to validate their common origin by celebrating a Panionian festival. In commenting on the Homeric Hymn to Apollo, Thucydides says that this supposedly Homeric description of the festival indicates a prototype of the Delia, to be contrasted with the contemporary version that was organized (‘made’) by the Athenians to be celebrated on a quadrennial basis: καὶ τὴν πεντετηρίδα τότε πρῶτον μετὰ τὴν κάθαρσιν ἐποίησαν οἱ Ἀθηναῖοι τὰ Δήλια.

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