Download Catullus (Blackwell Introductions to the Classical World) by Julia Haig Gaisser PDF

By Julia Haig Gaisser

Catullus is among the liveliest and so much attractive Roman poets. His emotion, attraction, and obvious spontaneity resonate with readers as strongly this present day as in antiquity. This subtle literary and old creation brings Catullus to lifestyles for the trendy reader and provides his poetry in all its number of feelings, topics, and styles.Places Catullus in a social, ancient, and literary contextExamines Catallus's type and topics, and offers a literary advent to his significant topics of affection, social lifestyles, and politicsDiscusses the reception of the poems via translators and interpreters

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17, Penguin translation) After the process of revision and testing the waters was complete, the author would at last allow his friends to let others read and copy the work. At this point it was considered public and allowed to circulate. 6 Accordingly, we can be sure that Nepos was the first “official” reader of poem 1 and the libellus it introduced. Individual poems within the libellus had undoubtedly been made public earlier and circulated independently. 7 But the libellus was made for Nepos—not for his sole enjoyment since the work was available to others once Catullus had released it, but to honor him and his friendship with the poet.

No one knows whether the ancient reader reached the end of a roll (and hence the end of a book) at poem 11 or poem 14 or somewhere else in the collection, and no one can be entirely sure even that the sequence (whether 1 to 11 or 1 to 14) was arranged by Catullus himself. But we do know that the arrangement 40 CATULLUS not only of the sequence but of the larger collection is ancient. This point was mentioned earlier. Now it is time to look at it more closely. D. but perhaps earlier. Although it is conceivable that whoever oversaw that transition changed the order in which the poems appeared in their individual rolls or books, it is far more likely that the rolls were simply copied into the codex just as they were.

We know that Catullus created a libellus specifically for Nepos and intended for subsequent wider circulation, and it seems likely that he composed poetry in other books as well. But we do not know what happened next. After five hundred years of the printed book we are accustomed to the mass production and standardization of texts and take it for granted that a book once written stays put—that its contents remain as the author arranged and intended them. But this was not necessarily so in antiquity, particularly in the case of short or shortish poems on diverse themes like those of Catullus.

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