By Robinson Ellis
This 1876 paintings is the magisterial remark by means of the Oxford student Robinson Ellis (1834-1913) at the lifestyles and oeuvre of the Roman poet Catullus, whose paintings illuminates the final years of the Roman Republic. Our wisdom of Catullus' existence derives nearly solely from his personal writings. 3 manuscripts live on which include a set of poems which are ascribed to him, and all 3 date from the fourteenth century. Ellis considers the examine that has already been undertaken at the poet and his surroundings yet in most cases attracts on his personal paintings in assessing the worth of the Renaissance Italian commentators who proven the widely authorized poetic canon. He lines the Greek impacts that Catullus used to be uncovered to and discusses his use of alternative metres, whereas additionally speculating at the id of his cherished Lesbia, a debatable query nonetheless unresolved within the twenty-first century.
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Extra resources for A Commentary on Catullus
The elegiac poet Phanocles treated this subject exclusively in his "Epares or KaXoi. The epigrams of Callimachus are full of the names of his favorites ; Apollonius has nothing more finished than his description of Eros and Ganymede; Aratus' passion for Philinus is associated by Theocritus with his own for Ageanax; six epigrams of Rhianus on this topic are preserved in the Anthology; and it probably figured in the poems, as it certainly did in the life, of the Chalcidian Euphorion1. The same feeling takes another shape in the apotheosis of the young and divinely beautiful Adonis, as exhibited in the Adoniazusae of Theocritus and the dirge of Bion : the former especially interesting as showing the connexion of the cultus with women.
Meineke (Anal. Alex. p. 378) attributes the use of hendecasyllables in long poems like Statius' Via Domiliana and Genethliacon Lucani to Greek models, perhaps to the Aeo-x<« of Heraclides Ponticus, a poem in three books written fierp
, in the reign of Claudius or Nero. The scheme of the metre as written by Catullus is as follows— The first foot is ordinarily a spondee, sometimes a trochee or iambus. In LV a spondee in the second foot is allowed to alternate, more or less regularly, with the usual dactyl.
Callimachus used also the scazon in his book of x<»^'V^0'> though he does not seem to recognize the law subsequently found in Babrius, which confines the last foot to paroxytone words ; a rule which the nature of the Latin accent makes almost invariable to Catullus. Yet how little that is truly Catullian can be ascribed to Alexandria, or indeed to any mere imitation ! For that Catullus did not confine himself to this school is shown not only by his translation of Sappho's ode Oaivtrai fioi Krjvoi IO-OS deoim, and his adoption of her metres and subjects elsewhere, especially in his two Epithalamia; but no less by his imitations of other poets, Homer, Pindar, Anacreon, and even more distinctly than these, of Archilochus.
A Commentary on Catullus by Robinson Ellis