Download e-book for kindle: Early Greek Monody: The History of a Poetic Type by G. M. Kirkwood

By G. M. Kirkwood

ISBN-10: 0801407958

ISBN-13: 9780801407956

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60 are precisely conceived figures, and the incident of the shield is a vivid scene. Homeric poetry too is precise in description, but the particularity that is characteristic of lyric is different, because the events and persons belong to the poet's immediate experience. The element of narrative is incidental; the events are valuable not intrinsically but for what they tell us about the poet himself, his attitude, tastes, and emotions. 31 Resignation, readiness to accept what deity brings, a sense of powerlessness in the hands of deity, a recognition of the ebb and flow of fortune, and resulting from all of these the thought that neither triumph nor defeat merits unreserved responseall these attitudes are typical of the moral, religious, and social milieu of archaic Greece ; they are on the lips of Achilles in Iliad 24, of Solon in his elegies, and even on occasion, as we shall see, of Alcaeus, for all his partisan zeal.

Ipperœ My shield brings joy to some Saian. Besidea bush I left the blamelessgear against my will. Myself I saved. What do I care for that shield? To hell with it. I'll soon get another no worse. The lines became the progenitor of a series of confessions made by poets at war. But it is one thing for Horace or Anacreon, neither of whom fancied himself at this kind of warfare, to confess to such an act, another for Archilochus. Archilochus does not say that he actually flung the "blameless gear" (the epithet is epic, the word entosis found only here in the singular; the combination of traditional and novel seems designedly odd) away in battle.

I have no love for a tall general, one who struts, Proud of his curly hair, clean-shaven; For my taste let him be short and obviouslybow-legged, Firmly set on his feet and full of heart. This too is un-Homeric, but not anti-Homeric. It may owe something to the description of Odysseus in Iliad 3. 30 Essentially it has the same outlook as Fr. 6, an outlook that puts effective action before appearance. In epic tradition there was almost no room for any such contrast: a great warrior looked the part and followed the code.

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Early Greek Monody: The History of a Poetic Type by G. M. Kirkwood


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