Simonides: A Historical Study

Simonides: A Historical Study

Simonides: A Historical Study

Simonides: A Historical Study

Synopsis

In his examination of the public life and poetic career of Simonides, Molyneux has provided a thorough examination of all the documentary evidence available with respect to one of history's major choral lyric poets.

Excerpt

The principal aim of this study is to examine the public life and poetic career of Simonides from a historical or biographical standpoint. To this end the following topics are considered: the occasion and date of Simonides’ poems (in cases where the evidence warrants such an enquiry); the dates of his association with various patrons; his whereabouts and movements at various stages of his poetic career; and his relationship with the communities, governments, or individuals for whom he wrote. Occasionally it will be appropriate to ask whether the evidence concerning Simonides throws any light on disputed historical questions of a more general nature. I have not attempted a biographical study in the widest sense. No attempt is made to discuss Simonides’ character, beliefs, position in literary history, or contribution to ideas. Matters such as family relationships or episodes of a personal or anecdotal nature, which form the material of the ancient biographical tradition and are treated in modern studies such as those of Bell or Lefkowitz, are discussed only if they are relevant to the question of Simonides’ dates or relationship with his patrons.

Within this framework I have tried to consider the revised dating of Simonides proposed by L. A. Stella, who advances arguments for dating his lifetime from c. 532/29 B.C. to about the middle of the fifth century. a re-dating . . .

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