Wandering Poets in Ancient Greek Culture

Wandering Poets in Ancient Greek Culture : Travel, Locality and Panhellenism

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Although recent scholarship has focused on the city-state as the context for the production of Greek poetry, for poets and performers travel was more the norm than the exception. This book traces this central aspect of ancient culture from its roots in the near Eastern societies which preceded the Greeks, through the way in which early semi-mythical figures such as Orpheus were imagined, the poets who travelled to the brilliant courts of archaic tyrants, and on into the fluid mobility of imperial and late antique culture. The emphasis is both on why poets travelled, and on how local communities used the skills of these outsiders for their own purposes. Wandering poets are also set within the wider context of ancient networks of exchange, patronage and affiliation between communities and are seen as one particularly powerful manifestation of a feature of ancient life which is too often overlooked.

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  • Hardback | 328 pages
  • 154 x 228 x 24mm | 662.24g
  • CambridgeUnited Kingdom
  • English
  • New.
  • 3 b/w illus. 1 map
  • 0521898781
  • 9780521898782
  • 1,724,693

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Author Information

Richard Hunter is Regius Professor of Greek at the University of Cambridge, and a fellow of Trinity College. He has published extensively in the fields of Greek and Latin Literature: his most recent books include Plato's Symposium (2004, with M. Fantuzzi); Tradition and Innovation in Hellenistic Poetry (Cambridge, 2004); and The Shadow of Callimachus (Cambridge, 2006). Ian Rutherford is Professor of Greek at the University of Reading. His principal research interests are Greek lyric, religious practice and state-pilgrimage, and the relations between Greek and eastern cultures. His Pindar's Paeans was published in 2001, and he is an editor of Pilgrimage in Greco-Roman and Early Christian Antiquity: Seeing the Gods (2005).

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Review quote

Review of the hardback: '... this is a wonderful book. It deals with a matter whose importance is still underestimated. The authors of the different papers enter into a dialogue with each other and write in a way that is certain to inspire new research. All in all, this is an amazing collection.' Bryn Mawr Classical Review

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