Homerus ubique: Lucian's use of Homer

Wilshere, Nicholas (2015) Homerus ubique: Lucian's use of Homer. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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It has been long acknowledged that Lucian employs various forms of allusion to the Iliad and Odyssey across his writings. This thesis builds on previous studies — which have produced taxonomic analyses of allusion, (mis)quotation and parody — to explore more fully the intertextual richness and complexity of Lucian’s writing that such approaches can paradoxically conceal.

Works such as Charon, Hercules, Alexander and several of the miniature dialogues are examined in depth, especially those which have received less attention previously and those in which Lucian can be most clearly seen engaging with the Homeric text, whether at the level of whole scenes, through quotation of short passages, by the construction of parodies and centos, or in drawing attention to lexical details. This examination reveals how such techniques are used to signal Lucian’s close familiarity with the author who was the ultimate talisman of sophistic paideia. Lucian is revealed as re-reading and re-presenting Homer in clever, mischievous, even ‘postmodern’ ways to produce striking effects which make his work both accessible and amusing to ancient audiences across a range of levels of education, from those who knew the main features of Homeric stories and language to those who were intimately familiar with allegorical interpretations of Homer and Alexandrian scholarly controversies over textual minutiae.

This is complemented by analysis of Lucian’s presentation of material from the biographical traditions about Homer as man and poet, a topic which has been less studied but which leads to consideration of the role played by Homer both in Lucian’s reflections on truth and lying and in the examination, by this Greek-speaking Syrian, of cultural relations between Greeks and non-Greeks in the cosmopolitan Mediterranean world of the second century.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Mossman, J.
Finglass, P.
Keywords: Lucian of Samosata, Homer, Second Sophistic parody, Cento allusion satire, Greek literature, Epic poetry reception
Subjects: P Language and literature > PA Classical philology
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of Humanities
Item ID: 29999
Depositing User: Wilshere, Nicholas
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2016 09:34
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2016 20:45
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/29999

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