Bacchylides: Politics, Performance, Poetic Tradition by David Fearn

By David Fearn

Bacchylides: Politics, functionality, Poetic Tradition combines shut literary research of Bacchylides' poetry with precise dialogue of the important function poetry performed in a number of differing political contexts all through Greece within the early 5th century BC. In Bacchylides' compliment poetry, David Fearn argues, the poet manipulates quite a lot of past Greek literature not just to raise the prestige of his prosperous consumers, but in addition to impress considered the character of political strength and aristocratic society. New gentle is additionally shed on Bacchylides' Dithyrambs, via distinct dialogue of the proof for the kuklios khoros ('circular chorus') and its relation to a number of assorted non secular fairs, in particular inside democratic Athens. The hyperlinks created among literary matters and cultural contexts reinvigorate those underappreciated poems and demonstrate their critical value for the self-definition of political communities.

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3–4). Although the latter is indeed also a conventional metaphor for poetry, it takes on a greater force here because of its connection with later themes. e. wine, in line 10: ανδρα´σι δ’ ψοτα´τω π µπει µερ µνα ·33 There is also a parallel to be drawn between the motivations of sending 31 Steiner (1986) 66–75; Kurke (1991) 33–4, 46–7, 51–2, on Pind. Ol. 12, Pyth. 1, and Nem. 4. 32 This is a broader sympotic topos: see below, n. 152 for Ath. 37b–e on the story of the Akragantine house called ‘Trireme’.

Much the most interesting of the usages is Nem. 20, where the epinician persona is referring to the dangers of inventing ( ξευρ ντα) new epinician material because of the φθ νο it might provoke: A. M. Miller (1982) 114. The Pindaric persona uses this warning as the introduction to his myth of Aias’ downfall; he could be said to be using traditional myth here not as something objectified and made difficult to react against, but as something already understood and taken into account: for Pindar and his victor mythical failure and historical victory work on the same plane as one another and offer mutual support.

Smyth (1920) 377 §1688c; cp. Hom. Od. 266, Plut. De E ap. Delph. 392e4. g. Pl. Phaedr. 246a, αγαθο κα ξ αγαθ ν. 64 For further exposition of the view in this paragraph, see Hardie (2004), esp. 30–2; Zuntz (1971) 277–393 for Mnemosyne and the golden tablets. Tradition and Contextualization 19 modesty. That the words being sought in fragment 5 are αρρητο may of course suggest that they are impossible to find, hence ο δ γα`ρ α˜ιστον. 65 New words are of course not impossible to find. On these terms, Bacchylides’ narrator can be understood to be constructing a link with poetic tradition, and more directly than was the case with Pindar’s paean.

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