Authors, whose works are available to us just in a fragmentary form, raise a most central issue: why are they pre-served only in fragments? With respect to some poets it is possible to find an answer in their reputation as pessimi poetae, already attested in antiquity. I intend to approach this topic by considering a revealing passage in Philode-mus’ De Poematis (Tractatus A, col. XXV Sbordone, from book 2 in Janko’s reconstruction, from 3 in Dorandi’s), which has been curiously neglected by the critics. There, models of good poetry are opposed to examples of bad poetry: for instance, Euripides in opposed to Carcinus and Cleaenetus for what concern tragedy, and Homer to Choerilus and Anaximenes with respect to epic poetry. It is not hard to recognise in their bad reputation the reason why their works have not been transmitted to us. Carcinus, Cleaenetus, Choerilus and Anaximenes represent in fact a blatant case of literature preserved only in fragments. In this paper, I aim therefore to consider the tradition related to the pessimi poetae, starting from Philodemus’ pas-sage. I shall have this achieved by elaborating on their bad reputation, which would be impossible to reconstruct without Philodemus’ testimony. For Cleaenetus (TrGF 84), I will reconsider a fragment by Alexis (fr. 268 K.-A.). I will then focus on the tradition about Carcinus: in this case, it is necessary to establish if the author cited by Philo-demus is Carcinus I (TrGF 21) or rather Carcinus II (70). Lastly, I will dwell on Choerilus (from Iasus: SH 333) and Anaximenes (from Lampsacus: SH 31). Both are to be identified with the homonymous poets that accompa-nied Alexander the Great on his Asiatic expedition. Even if Horace corroborates Choerilus’ bad reputation, details are to be added to his depiction; also for Anaximenes new evidences need to be taken into account. Thanks to such a reconstruction of the tradition concerned with the pessimi poetae, it is possible to focus on an ex-tremely early selection in the transmission of ancient literature, otherwise ignored. Thanks to Philodemus’ passage we can understand how the neglect concerning a number of poets, far from being casual, reflects the standpoint adopted by ancient critics.
Pessimi poeti: tradizione antica e criteri di selezione / M. Pelucchi. ((Intervento presentato al convegno Optanda erat oblivio : Selection and Loss in Ancient and Medieval Literature tenutosi a Bari nel 2018.
|Titolo:||Pessimi poeti: tradizione antica e criteri di selezione|
|Data di pubblicazione:||20-dic-2018|
|Parole Chiave:||Philodemus; Fragments; Fragmentary literature; Selection criteria; Damnatio memoriae; Hellenistic philosophy|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore L-FIL-LET/02 - Lingua e Letteratura Greca|
Settore L-FIL-LET/05 - Filologia Classica
|Citazione:||Pessimi poeti: tradizione antica e criteri di selezione / M. Pelucchi. ((Intervento presentato al convegno Optanda erat oblivio : Selection and Loss in Ancient and Medieval Literature tenutosi a Bari nel 2018.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||14 - Intervento a convegno non pubblicato|