TAPA Issue 134.2

I. Presidential Address 2004

  • James J. O'Donnell

    Late Antiquity: Before and After

II. Papers

  • Dimitri Nakassis

    Gemination at the Horizons: East and West in the Mythical Geography of Archaic Greek Epic

    This paper examines descriptions of remote places in archaic Greek epic. I argue that Homeric cosmic geography consists of two complementary models, one in which the sun rises and sets at a single locus—the axis mundi—as in the Theogony, and another in which sunrise and sunset take place on the eastern and western horizons respectively. Conflation of these models in the Odyssey results in the gemination of peoples and places associated in myth with the sun. This not only explains some recurrent patterns in Homeric geography and their thematic importance to Odysseus' travels, but also resolves some traditional interpretive difficulties with descriptions of the edges of the earth in archaic epic.
     

  • Herbert Granger

    Heraclitus' Quarrel with Polymathy and Historiê

    Heraclitus' attitude towards polymathy (B40) and inquiry or historiê (B129) is controversial, although most scholars believe that he was a practicing histôr who thought that polymathy was a necessary, but not a sufficient, condition for "understanding." Through a study of historiê and polymathy as practiced by those whom Heraclitus explicitly attacks, and by other practitioners of the sixth and fifth centuries, this paper argues that the histores were dependent upon polymathy, and that since Heraclitus believes that polymathy is an impediment to understanding, he would not count himself among the polymaths and histores.
     

  • Andrew Scholtz

    Friends, Lovers, Flatterers: Demophilic Courtship in Aristophanes' Knights

    The politician-as-lover conceit in Aristophanes' Knights presents a comic twist on the "demophilia topos," a strategy whereby speakers accuse opponents of seducing the dêmos with specious claims of affection. By sexualizing the topos, Aristophanes stages demophilic politics as pederastic courtship, foregrounding tensions between the eunoia ideal and kolakeia scare-image in city leadership. But Aristophanes does not stop there. Demos, a virtual pornos complicit in his leaders' efforts to con and "bugger" him, pursues self-interest no less passive-aggressively, cynically, or covertly than they do. Hence value-reversals suggesting stasis, along with a profoundly equivocal return to the "noble simplicity."
     

  • Ralph M. Rosen

    Aristophanes' Frogs and the Contest of Homer and Hesiod

    Dionysus' unexpected decision at the end of the play is generally thought to reflect the notion that poets such as Aeschylus and Euripides had practical moral insight to offer their audiences and to promote an "Aeschylean" over a "Euripidean" approach to life. I argue, however, that this ending offers a curiously offbeat combination of aesthetic insight and intertextual playfulness that ultimately relieves the Aristophanic Aeschylus and Euripides of the moralizing burden they have had to shoulder for so long. My reasons for suggesting this arise from consideration of the relationship between Frogs and another literary text that featured a high-profile poetic contest, namely, the Contest of Homer and Hesiod.
     

  • David Rosenbloom

    Ponêroi vs. Chrêstoi: The Ostracism of Hyperbolos and the Struggle for Hegemony in Athens after the Death of Perikles, Part II

    The ostracism of Hyperbolos, a ponêros and sykophant, realized a comic plot, bordered on pharmakos ritual, and inaugurated a period of increasingly violent stasis between chrêstoi and ponêroi that included the affairs of the Hermai and the Mysteries and the oligarchic takeovers of 411 and 404. The stasis ends with the labels ponêros and chrêstos negotiable. Over the next two generations, citizens of Hyperbolos' profile attained hegemony in Athenian society and the dikasterion evolved as the authoritative venue for the allocation of the labels. This marks the moment when ostracism is an institutional relic. This is the second and final part of a paper whose first part appeared in TAPA 134.1 (2004).
     

  • Andreola Rossi

    Parallel Lives: Hannibal and Scipio in Livy's Third Decade

    I trace the correspondences between the lives of Hannibal and Scipio in the third Decade of Ab urbe condita and show how Livy fashions the two as "parallel lives." I further explore how this synkrisis reflects issues critical to the political discourse of the late Republic and sets up an exemplary antithesis between Rome's past virtus and her present decline.
     

  • Kathryn Gutzwiller

    Gender and Inscribed Epigram: Herennia Procula and the Thespian Eros

    A marble statue base found at Thespiae preserves an elegiac couplet about Praxiteles' Eros signed by one Herennia Procula (BCH [1926] 404–6). This poet, who is absent from surveys of ancient women writers, is here identified as a member of a wealthy Roman family resident at Thessalonica (IG X 2.1 no. 70). The couplet, which was probably composed for a copy of the Eros statue made to replace the original removed by Nero, makes sophisticated allusion to a series of epigrams about Praxiteles' Cnidian Aphrodite, but with a key variation that points to the nature of the worship of Eros at Thespiae. Plutarch's Amatorius, set during the celebration of the Thespian Erotidia, provides important parallels to show that the Praxitelean Eros had by the early Flavian period become an object of veneration for women hoping for happy and sexually fulfilling marriages.

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