Pindar and the Renaissance Hymn-Ode, 1450-1700

By Stella P. Revard | Go to book overview

Preface

Many years ago someone told me that there were only two poets who were truly sublime: Milton and Pindar. I already knew first hand the sublimity of Milton, but at that point in my life I was Greekless and the translations of Pindar that I was acquainted with left sublimity behind. At the end of my first year of Greek as a kind of reward for doing well, George Pepe, my instructor at Washington University, offered a tidbit of Pindar—Olympian 14. Little did he know what he was starting. As I came to the end of the first strophe and Pindar's exalted description of the Graces standing by Pythian Apollo and with him eternally revering in song the honor of the Olympian Zeus, I finally experienced with a divine shiver Pindar's sublimity first-hand. I persuaded in due course another member of Washington University's Classics Department, Carl Conrad, to offer the first Pindar course the Department had offered in recent times. Reading a rich selection of Pindar's odes, I found myself wanting to understand how the odes of this extraordinary poet had come down to the Renaissance, and if perchance, in some way my other poet—John Milton—might have owed a little of his own sublimity to his sublime predecessor. Thus I embarked upon this book—about twenty years ago. In due course chapters 1 and 2 of the book served as a Master's Thesis for an M. A. in Classics at Washington University.

I owe a great deal to those who had faith in this project over the years as I sallied forth into territory where few had gone before. The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded me a summer fellowship in 1976 and later a year-long fellowship in 1985; Southern Illinois University granted me research grants, summer fellowships, and leaves

-xi-

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Pindar and the Renaissance Hymn-Ode, 1450-1700
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Medievae and Renaissance Texts and Studies ii
  • Title Page v
  • Table of Contents ix
  • Preface xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Pindar: Man and Poet 9
  • Chapter 2 - Pindar and His Muses 51
  • Chapter 3 - Hymns to the Gods 121
  • Chapter 4 - Classical Hymn in the Renaissance 181
  • Chapter 5 - Pindar and the Christian Hymn-Ode 222
  • Chapter 6 - The Graces in Their Merriment: Pindar and the Light Ode 277
  • Chapter 7 - The Philosophical Ode in the Seventeenth Century 318
  • Epilogue 339
  • Bibliography 341
  • Index 361
  • Mrts 385
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